A native of Gilbert, La., Monroe grew up on a cotton, soybean and cattle farm. He moved to Baton Rouge to pursue a degree in agribusiness from Louisiana State University.
Louisiana Farm Bureau Assistant to the President James “Jim” R. Monroe announced he would retire after 47 years of service to the state’s farmers, ranchers and rural residents.
“I couldn’t ask for a better ‘right-hand-man’ to lead the state office staff for all the years I’ve been president,” Louisiana Farm Bureau President Ronnie Anderson said. “Over his career, Jim was instrumental in guiding policy and legislation on the state and national levels.”
A native of Gilbert, La., Monroe grew up on a cotton, soybean and cattle farm. He moved to Baton Rouge to pursue a degree in agribusiness from Louisiana State University. After earning his bachelor of science degree in 1970, Monroe entered graduate school and received a master’s degree in agricultural economics in 1974.
Former Louisiana Farm Bureau President James “Jimmy” Graugnard, Sr. hired Monroe in 1972 to serve as Assistant Commodity Director. Monroe then became Commodity Director in July of 1976, and Assistant to the President in January of 1983, the highest staff position within the grassroots organization.
“Jim really knows how to get the people around him to get things done without micromanaging them,” said Louisiana Farm Bureau General Counsel Henry Bernard, Jr., who served as Assistant to the President prior to Monroe and has been with the company for 52 years. “Aside from being a great administrator, Jim is also very involved at the State Capitol and has a knack for getting in front of issues even before they’re issues.”
“The best thing is the people I work with,” Monroe said. “It’s wonderful to watch people come into this organization as youths in our contests, go into the Young Farmers and Ranchers program and mature into leadership. You get to know them as people, see their families and their whole lives. They’re all volunteers and they’re all driven by the same goal—to make a difference.”
Monroe, 70, plans to spend more time with his wife, Connie, and two children, Chris and Darryl, and four grandchildren, Ryan, Raegan, Parker and Pierson, following his retirement.
President Anderson appointed Louisiana Farm Bureau Associate Commodity Director Kyle McCann to take the role of Assistant to the President upon Monroe’s retirement on April 30.
Founded in 1922, the Louisiana Farm Bureau Federation is the state’s largest general farm organization representing more than 137,000 member families. For more information: www.lafarmbureau.org.