ARA’s Jack Eberspacher Loses Battle With Cancer

Jack Eberspacher, president and CEO of the Agricultural Retailers Association (ARA), died July 5 in a hospital in suburban Washington, DC.

According to an ARA news release, he "died peacefully in his sleep on July 5, 2009 at the Inova Cameron Glen Care Center in Reston, VA. Eberspacher was out on indefinite medical leave from ARA after a diagnosis of cancer in late April of this year."

“ARA and the industry lost a dynamic leader and true visionary,” says ARA Chairman Ken Manning of Wilbur-Ellis Co. “Jack worked tirelessly to build this organization into the strong voice for agricultural retailers and distributors we have today in the nation’s Capitol. He always stressed the importance of ARA listening to its members and providing value to those members. Due to his efforts, we have an experienced and very capable team at ARA who are committed to seeing Jack’s and the Board of Director’s vision for the organization fulfilled. ARA has a solid foundation in place that will only get stronger through the active involvement of its members and the industry.”

Eberspacher was appointed president of ARA in July 2001 by the association’s board of directors. He grew the association by over 100 percent, increasing the annual association dues revenue from $567,000 to over $1.3 million, according to ARA’s Web site.

Prior to joining ARA, Eberspacher served as CEO of the National Association of Wheat Growers (NAWG). His leadership was the catalyst behind NAWG’s financial turnaround, guiding the organization out from negative $200,000 in net earnings to a positive $80,000 in two-and-a-half years. Before NAWG, Eberspacher served as CEO of the National Grain Sorghum Producers Association, located in Lubbock, TX. He grew that association by 300 percent and is credited with developing balanced association programs on policy, plant science and utilization; placing the association on the national legislative and regulatory scene. As a result, sorghum was the only commodity not to take a reduction in farm program payments within the 1995 farm bill.

In February 2002, Eberspacher was the only commodity leader invited to address the National Governors Conference, where he discussed the state of the agriculture economy and the importance of the 2002 farm bill. He was also appointed to the Bush/Cheney Agricultural Transition Team.

According to ARA’s Web site, Eberspacher also had direct agricultural experience as a general manager of Quercus Farms, Inc., a 3,200-acre farm comprising purebred cattle and a timber operation near Atlanta, GA. He earned a bachelor’s degree in animal science from the University of Nebraska and completed coursework toward a masters in business administration at Texas Tech University.

Richard Gupton, ARA’s vice president of legislative policy and counsel, has been serving as the interim leader of ARA during Eberspacher’s medical leave.

Other industry leaders are talking to CropLife eNews about his legacy in agriculture:

  • "In the years that I was lucky enough to call Jack Eberspacher a friend, I could not get over his ‘positive only’ mood. When ARA was struggling a few years ago, Jack was always upbeat. When several of the big companies dropped out a few years ago over a difference of opinion, Jack said, ‘They will be back’ and he was right. When Jack would give the board his budget for new members each year, we would all think that he was just wishing, but he would always exceed those lofty goals. When other ag business associations were losing members, ARA was gaining. Under Jack’s leadership, and dedicated staff, ARA is now a very influential voice in D.C.
    Jack’s replacement will need size 100 shoes." — John Hester, owner/manager of Nichols Agriservice, LLC, Nichols, IA
  • "I join everyone in the agricultural inputs industry in expressing profound sympathy to Jack’s family and ARA staff colleagues and members on the occasion of his passing. CropLife America, ARA, and Jack and I have enjoyed an incredibly positive and productive relationship since he came aboard in 2001, and of course we worked closely with Jack at his previous posts with wheat and sorghum grower groups. In every instance Jack was always focused on clear objectives for his members and was a steady and willing partner in so many coalition activities we worked in together. His departure leaves a major hole in the fabric of the larger agricultural community here in Washington, DC and we’ll miss his support, creativity, doggedness, and good humor." — Jay Vroom, president and CEO of CropLife America
  • “Jack was a good man who was dedicated to his family and passionate about his job. He worked hard to promote the interests of the members of the Ag Retailers Association. We all want to live to a ripe old age where we can tell stories of our youth and see our children and grandchildren prosper. We are saddened that Jack was taken at such an early age and our thoughts and prayers are with his family.” — Ford West, president of The Fertilizer Institute
  • "Jack was a leader, a visionary, and a person who made things happen, and will be missed by all who knew him. Agriculture has lost a good and talented friend.” — Bryan Gentsch, executive vice president, Texas Seed Trade Association

Eberspacher is survived by his wife, Jinger, and two children, Sam and Maggie.

A memorial service will be held at 2:30 p.m. July 11 at the Vienna Presbyterian Church on 124 Park St., NE, in Vienna, VA. A reception will be held at the church immediately following the service.

An educational trust has been created for Sam and Maggie Eberspacher, and checks should be made payable to the "Sam and Maggie Eberspacher Educational Trust," according to an ARA news release. Memorials may be mailed to: Bank of America, N.A. c/o Carolyn F. Grant-Suttie, 8300 Greensboro Dr., Suite 500, McLean, VA 22102.

An online guest book has been set up on Legacy.com, which will remain online until Aug. 7.

(Primary source: Agricultural Retailers Association)

Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher Jack Eberspacher
 

Leave a Reply

Featured Stories

CropLife 100CropLife 100: The Colors Of Custom Application
December 5, 2014
Although many color spray rigs are in the yards of the nation’s top ag retailers, the majority of them still come in only a few shades. Read More
EquipmentAGCO Names Idaho Custom Applicator As 2014 Operator of the Year
December 4, 2014
Praised for his quality work and strong customer relationships, Idaho professional farm applicator Brent Klein has been named by AGCO Application Equipment as 2014 Operator of the Year. Read More
EquipmentAGCO Announces Operator Of The Year Finalists
November 20, 2014
Four custom applicators have been selected by AGCO Application Equipment as finalists for 2014 Operator of the Year, an honor that recognizes them as being among the top professionals in their industry throughout North America. Read More
CropLife 100Pinnacle Ag Acquires Colorado Aerial Application Outlet
November 17, 2014
Ft. Lupton, CO-based Reck Aviation — a full-service chemical application company providing aerial crop applications of fertilizers and crop protection products — will operate as part of Pinnacle's AgOne Application Services brand. Read More

Top 100 Articles

CropLife 100CHS: Driving Momentum To Help Farmer-Owners Grow
December 11, 2014
CHS Inc., the nation’s leading farmer-owned cooperative and a global energy, grains and foods company, must capture new opportunities to Read More
CropLife 100BRANDT, Verdesian Ink Distribution Agreement
December 9, 2014
The agreement grants BRANDT the exclusive right to sell and market Verdesian’s patented Steric chemistry in the Turf and Ornamental and eastern U.S. ag markets under the BRANDT Reaction product line name. Read More
CropLife 100CropLife 100: The Colors Of Custom Application
December 5, 2014
Although many color spray rigs are in the yards of the nation’s top ag retailers, the majority of them still come in only a few shades. Read More
CropLife 100Pinnacle Invests In Meridian Agriculture Distribution
December 4, 2014
Meridian will provide retailers with supplier-branded products and numerous opportunities to differentiate themselves from their competitors. Read More
CropLife 100CropLife 100: Entering A New Seed Era
December 4, 2014
The seed category has been re-vitalized during the past few years, and more good news (and varieties) are headed the industry’s way in 2015. Read More
CropLife 100CropLife 100: The Depressed State Of Fertilizer
December 3, 2014
Following downright giddy growth earlier this decade, fertilizer sales have fallen back down to earth the past two years. Read More

Latest News

Crop InputsNufarm Fills Regulatory VP Position
December 18, 2014
Nufarm announced today that Rob Schwehr has been promoted to the position of Vice President of Innovation & Regulatory Affairs for Nufarm Americas. Read More
Seed/BiotechReport: China Approves Viptera Corn, U.S. Officials Awa…
December 17, 2014
Chinese authorities have informed some agriculture industry officials the government has approved U.S. imports of a type of genetically modified corn developed by Syngenta. Read More
FertilizerMonty’s Plant Food Brings In New Sales Rep
December 16, 2014
Monty's Plant Food Company has hired Warren Kearns as its newest Sales Representative for the South Carolina area. Read More
EquipmentHagie Wins 2014 CropLife IRON Product Of The Year Award
December 15, 2014
The self-propelled sprayer maker has a hit on its hands with the new STS Series model. Read More
Syngenta
Seed/BiotechSyngenta Sees China Approving Contentious GMO Corn Soon
December 15, 2014
Syngenta will make an announcement when it receives official documentation from China that Agrisure Viptera corn, known as MIR 162, has been cleared for import. Read More
Crop InputsVerdesian Life Sciences Names Vice President Of Communi…
December 15, 2014
Amy Bugg will oversee the execution of all promotional strategies for the corporate brand and the complete product portfolio. Read More
StewardshipFarmers, Retailers Attend 4R Certification 4U Workshop
December 15, 2014
More than 160 farmers and ag retailer attended the “4R Certification 4U” workshop December 12 to learn more about the 4Rs of nutrient stewardship, water quality research in the area and cost-sharing opportunities. Read More
Matt Hopkins10 Best New Agriculture Apps For 2015
December 15, 2014
These new agriculture apps are certain to help ag professionals do their jobs more efficiently in 2015 and beyond. Read More
ManagementARA Learnings, Retail Buying Intentions: Welcome To Cro…
December 12, 2014
This informal video program puts news and events effecting retailers into context, and features Editors Paul Schrimpf and Eric Sfiligoj. Read More
Seed/BiotechMonsanto Herbicide-Tolerant Technology Closer To Commer…
December 12, 2014
The final EIS moves Monsanto one step closer to the introduction of Bollgard II XtendFlex cotton and Roundup Ready 2 Xtend soybeans, paving the way to provide access to dicamba-tolerant soybeans and cotton. Read More
Seed/BiotechUSDA Issues Final Environmental Impact Statement On Her…
December 12, 2014
The USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is issuing a final environmental impact statement on varieties of cotton and soybeans that have been genetically engineered for resistance to several herbicides, including the one known as dicamba. Read More
CropLife 100CHS: Driving Momentum To Help Farmer-Owners Grow
December 11, 2014
CHS Inc., the nation’s leading farmer-owned cooperative and a global energy, grains and foods company, must capture new opportunities to Read More
LegislationARA Applauds CFATS Passage Prior To Holiday Adjournment
December 11, 2014
The streamlined bill provides a four-year authorization of the CFATS program and guidance to DHS on key issues of chemical facility security Read More
Seed/BiotechBayer CropScience’s ILeVO Approved By EPA
December 11, 2014
EPA has approved ILeVO, the only seed treatment that protects the root system against infections caused by the Sudden Death Syndrome fungus and has activity against dangerous nematodes. Read More
Biologicals in Emerging Markets Map.
Crop InputsBiocontrols Could Quadruple By 2025; Will Regulators Pl…
December 11, 2014
The European experience with GMOs offers caution — and a promise — for biologicals. Read More
Crop InputsBASF Donates $75,000 To Feeding America
December 10, 2014
The donation will support Feeding America’s National Produce Program, an initiative that helps with planning, transportation and logistics to ensure fresh produce deliveries to the 200 member food banks around the country. Read More
InsecticidesHow To Avoid Aphid Infestation In Winter Wheat
December 10, 2014
The best strategy for managing aphid infestations in winter wheat — and the potential yellow dwarf diseases that they transmit — is prevention, according to a South Dakota State University Plant Pathology field specialist. Read More
LegislationDufault Installed As New ARA Chair
December 10, 2014
Dave Dufault, Vice President and General Manager of J.R. Simplot Company's Retail Business, was installed as the 2015 Chairman of the Board for ARA on December 4. Read More