THE BEST INVESTMENT YOU'LL MAKE IN YOUR BUSINESS ALL YEAR...
What is FARMCON?
FARMCON is an opportunity for you to connect with like-minded movers and shakers in the ag sector. These are people who have felt the ground crumbling beneath their feet and lived to tell the tale. It’s is an event for learning, working, and some play too. It’s not for everyone though – we’re looking for those ready and willing to take themselves and their businesses to the next level in 2024. It’s a series of hands-on workshops that will encourage you to push the limits of your creativity, discipline, and potential for success.
Most importantly, FARMCON doesn’t end when the conference is over. We are working to build a network of creative-minded people that love rural America and what it stands for, and people that are willing to fight to keep it alive. We aim to give you something you can take home to your team, to help arm you with the tools to needed to create a growing and thriving modern business. Together we can make a difference!
It will change your perspective!
The Main Event
Chef Andre Rush
Chef Andre Rush is renown as one of the top chefs in the United States military, and retired as Master Sergeant. He has represented the Army resulting in over 100 new soldiers joining the forces. He was also a member of the United States Culinary Arts Team where he competed and won 150 medals and trophies.
Chef Andre Rush was the Senior Enlisted Aide to the Superintendent of the United States Military Academy. In this capacity he served as Senior Aide and advisor for DVQ’s, dignitaries and high profile VIPs.
He joined the military as a reservist where he would later switch over to active Army in July of 1993. He has spent time at Fort Stewart, 503 Infantry at Camp Casey Korea, Fort Campbell Kentucky and Fort Bragg North Carolina
In September 1996 he served as the Joint and Vice Chief of Staff for eight general officers and four Chief of Staff of the Army over the next three years. Moving to West Point soon after, Chef Rush had the opportunity to work for four Superintendents as well as ASI Finance CMD GO Washington DC. He has also worked in the White House and the Presidential Guest House.
Chef Rush has deployed multiple times and has held a variety of leadership positions to include Senior Advisor, Enlisted Aides, Operational Manager, and Foodservice Manager.
He has served as a hand-to-hand combat trainer to over 1,000 cadets, airmen, soldiers, marines and civilians. He trained over 10,000 troops in the art of culinary and was called upon Army wide to assist in teaching other senior and junior aides. He has volunteered his entire career and rendered his services for the Core of cadets for the last 10 years.
Chef Andre Rush holds a Bachelors degree in Business Management from TUI; Associates degree from Culinary Stafford University; and Associates degree in Hotel Restaurant Management from Central Texas. He is also certified in Household/Estate Management from Starkey International; Sommelier Course from Denver Colorado; CCNA; ACF; and Certified Ice Carver.
On April 10, 2012, United States Army Staff Sergeant Travis Mills of the 82nd Airborne was critically injured on his third tour of duty in Afghanistan by an improvised explosive device (IED) while on patrol. The explosion blew off portions of all four of his limbs… He is one of only five quadruple amputees from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan to survive his injuries.
Thanks to his amazing strength, courage, an incredible will to live, the heroic actions of the men in his unit, the prayers of thousands, and all the healthcare providers at the Walter Reed Army Medical Center, near Washington D.C., Travis remains on the road to recovery. Every day is a battle, but Travis continues to astound friends and family alike with his progress and with his amazing spirit.
Travis maintained his lifelong mantra of: “Never Give Up. Never Quit,” and credits Kelsey and Chloe (then 6 months old) as the driving force behind his positivity and persistence to overcome the challenges of his new normal.
Michael Batnick is an American author, blogger, and Chartered Financial Analyst from Merrick, New York. He runs the daily online blog the irrelevant investor, where he aims to educate people about investing. He is also a co-host of two weekly financial podcasts, Animal Spirits and The Compound and Friends.
In 2018, Batnick authored the book Big Mistakes: The Best Investors and Their Worst Investments. In the book, Batnick describes the ways in which the big name investors like Warren Buffett and Bill Ackman have failed and talks about the lessons learned that shaped more successful strategies for them going forward. Batnick is on the investment committee and is the director of research at Barry Ritholtz’s Ritholtz Wealth Management LLC, a Registered investment adviser firm.
Batnick has been featured in publications and media outlets, including CNBC, Bloomberg, Business Insider, and Barron’s.
Ben Carlson is the Director of Institutional Asset Management at Ritholtz Wealth Management. He has spent his career helping various nonprofit, institutional, and high-net-worth clients plan and invest their money wisely. Ben is the creator of a popular financial blog and podcast and is the author of several books including A Wealth of Common Sense: Why Simplicity Trumps Complexity in Any Investment Plan and Organizational Alpha: How to Add Value in Institutional Asset Management.
Kevin Van Trump, CEO
CEO, Farm Direction, Angel Investor, Trader, Corp. Coach, and author of The Van Trump Report. Helps investors and Ag professionals better execute by making more informed decisions.
CEO & Founder Erik Huberman launched Hawke Media in 2014. Now valued at over $150 million, Hawke Media is the fastest growing marketing consultancy agency in the United States. Prior to its launch, Erik successfully founded, grew, and sold two e-commerce companies by the age of 26. Erik has since continued to strategically expand his business portfolio inclusive of a handful of company acquisitions, the 2018 launch of Hawke Ventures which reached a closed single fund of $5.6 million, the 2020 launch of his own podcast, HawkeTalk, the 2021 launch of HawkeZ, an agency offering brands the tools needed to tap into GenZ and most recently authored his own book, The Hawke Method.
As a serial entrepreneur and marketing expert, Erik has been recognized by his industry peers throughhonors and awards including, Forbes Magazine’s 30Under30, CSQ’s 40Under40, and Inc. Magazine’s Top 25 Marketing Influencers just to name a few.
Tom Koulopoulos is Chairman and founder of Delphi Group, a 30-year-old Boston-based think tank named one of the fastest growing private companies by Inc. Magazine, and the founding partner of Acrovantage Ventures, which invests in early-stage technology startups. He is also the author of 13 books, an Inc.com columnist, the past Executive Director of the Babson College Center for Business Innovation, the past director of the Dell Innovation Lab, and a professor at Boston University.
His insights have received wide praise from luminaries such as the late Peter Drucker, the father of modern management; Dee Hock, founder of Visa International, and Tom Peters, who called his writing, “a brilliant vision of where we must take our enterprises to survive and thrive.” His Inc. column is read by over one million people yearly.
Mr. Koulopoulos’ thirteen books include his most recent, Reimagining Healthcare, The Bottomless Cloud, Revealing the Invisible, The Gen Z Effect, and Cloud Surfing. His upcoming book, Gigatrends, looks at the seven tech trends that are shaping the future of how we live, work, and play.