Terry L. Stokes has been named Chief Executive Officer of the National Cattlemen's Beef Association effective immediately. Stokes, 47, is currently the organization's executive vice president and chief financial officer, and has served as interim CEO since the departure of Chuck Schroeder last month.

A search committee named by NCBA Executive Committee recommended Stokes for the position today. The recommendation was accepted unanimously by the Executive Committee.

According to NCBA President Wythe Willey, the organization will not miss a step with Stokes at the helm. "I've had the opportunity to work with Terry and he is an extremely capable, talented and motivated individual," Willey said.

"I am confident he will provide valuable leadership to our organization." Willey said Stokes will oversee NCBA staff and help manage the day-to-day operations of the leading organization representing America's cattle farmers and ranchers.

John Lacey, chairman of the search committee and a beef producer from California, said the search was done quickly, but carefully and thoroughly. "We received about 40 applications for the position, and each of our committee members reviewed each resume," Lacey said. "The seven finalists we eventually brought in for interviews were each exceptional, but in the end we recommended Terry as the most qualified for the position."

"I'm honored and humbled to be given this opportunity," Stokes said. "The beef industry has been a key part of my life – and part of the lives of my entire family – for more than half a century."

Stokes joined NCBA as chief financial officer in 1996, and added the assignment of executive vice president in 1999. Before joining NCBA he was the Executive Vice President and CFO for the Texas Beef Council, where he had worked for three years.

A native Texan, Stokes' career spans all segments of the cattle and beef industry, including cow/calf, feeding and packing. He currently partners with his brother-in-law in a small stocker operation in Southern Texas. According to Stokes, NCBA is a catalyst for positive change in the industry, working to enhance the potential for producer profitability.

His role as chief executive will involve managing staff and finances to accomplish the objectives defined by members and stakeholders who invest their time and money in the organization.

"We have a great team to help meet the needs and expectations of the industry," he said. "Those of us who work for NCBA go to bed every night and get up every morning thinking of ways we can enhance the beef producing environment and demand for beef. It's all about how we can improve the success opportunities for those in our industry."

Stokes said NCBA and its staff and members, as well as state cattlemen's associations, state beef councils and national breed associations, have a passion for the beef industry that reflects its grassroots. And the same goes for his family, he said, whose strong work ethic, integrity and desire to pass values and assets to the next generation can be tied to industry involvement.

A graduate of Angelo State University with a degree in animal agriculture, Stokes also has an MBA with emphasis in operations management and managerial accounting from the University of Texas - Austin. He and his wife, Beverley, reside in Denver.