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MFA Oil Joins the Advanced Governance Series

08/23/2016

MFA Oil Joins FCC Services Advance Governance Series Program

Effective governance is key to organizational success for cooperatives as much as for any other business, and strong board performance depends on each director understanding the board’s fiduciary responsibilities and roles in strategic planning and working with senior management.

FCC Services’ Advance Governance Series (AGS) is designed to provide the context and the information necessary for directors to fully serve their cooperative. Through six distinct program modules, AGS provides professional development and education to improve both overall board performance and individual competence by connecting directors with subject matter experts and with their peers, and through experiential learning opportunities. Participants learn about board roles and responsibilities, financing and risk management, strategy and human capital issues, and have the opportunity to attend the Gettysburg Leadership Experience and the Lewis & Clark Experience.

MFA Oil, a dynamic farmer-owned cooperative with 40,000 members, recently joined AGS.  The cooperative operates across 11 states and has made multiple acquisitions over recent years.

“We hadn’t really offered any formal director development programs for a number of years, and we thought it prudent to give our directors the opportunity to attend an organized professional development program that would provide them with insight on best practices and a deeper understanding about the importance of board leadership,” says Mark Fenner, MFA Oil’s CEO.

MFA Oil has made participation in AGS mandatory for new directors as part of their onboarding process, and incumbent directors are invited to participate as they are interested. Very new to the program, only a few directors have had a chance yet to attend one of the AGS modules but the feedback is already very positive.

“Our directors have really enjoyed the sessions, and appreciate the inclusiveness of the discussions with the facilitators ensuring that everyone has the chance to participate,” Mark says. “Another real benefit is the interaction with directors from other cooperatives.”

The results are already apparent in the boardroom: "They’ve come back with a deeper understanding of their roles, and there’s already more interaction and discussion in our meetings, and that’s critical as we discuss important issues,” says Mark.

Mark is also a strong supporter of the Gettysburg Leadership Experience – after his experience with the program, he’s now sending the cooperatives entire senior management team this July.

If you’re a cooperative interested in taking your board from strong to stellar, FCC Services offers a comprehensive array of targeted programs and expert-guided services that support governance excellence and your organization’s strategic plan. For more information on the Advanced Governance Series, call Bill Wilson at 502.244.7286.

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