The Leadership Link

AgriTalk – June 27, 2024

In this month’s Soy Checkoff Check-In, USB CEO Lucas Lentsch discusses his first six months as CEO and what he’s learned by listening to farmers, QSSBs, and partners. Plus, he digs into biodiesel and how soybean oil has the opportunity to provide energy independence and sustainable solutions to consumers.

Key Initiatives










The management team has been restructured to support USB’s goal of delivering more transparency, efficiency and accountability across the U.S. Soy ecosystem. 


  • Keenan McRoberts, Ph.D. — Executive Vice President, Strategy. McRoberts leads USB’s investment strategy team. His oversight ensures high impact and returns on strategic investments throughout USB’s portfolio. 
  • Darryl Chatman — Executive Vice President, Compliance. Chatman leads USB’s compliance and governance oversight. In addition, he provides parliamentary and legal guidance and is the executive staff liaison to USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service, Foreign Agricultural Service, and Office of the General Counsel. 
  • Sandi Schwarzen, CPA — Executive Vice President, Finance. Schwarzen leads USB’s financial affairs, including financial risk management, accounting, financial reporting, budgeting, revenue projections, banking, collections and auditing. 
  • John Jansen — Senior Vice President, Marketing. Jansen supports USB’s marketing strategy by engaging the soybean value chain and identifying demand opportunities. His expertise drives soybean oil investments and engagement with consumer packaged goods companies. 
  • Doug Ackerman — Senior Vice President, Reputation & Insights. New to the team, Ackerman will lead USB’s reputation and insights strategy, including integrated communications. He will also advise board members and staff on all reputation-related matters and oversee U.S. Soy and soy checkoff brand channels. 
  • Regina Cleary — Vice President, Board Relations & Farmer Outreach. Cleary leads USB’s board engagement and farmer outreach strategy. In addition, she manages USB’s internal operations, facilitates office processes and coordinates logistics for the Board.

Karen Baudendistel — Effective June 11 — Baudendistel joined as director, contract compliance. Karen joins USB full-time as she previously worked as a contractor with USBs legal contractor. 

Stephen Pope — Effective June 17 — Pope joined USB as senior manager, financial compliance. Stephen has moved over from financial contractor CLA to USB staff.

Mac Marshall — Effective June 7 — Marshall is no longer with USB. We thank Mac for his service to the United Soybean Board organization. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact Lucas Lentsch or Darryl Chatman.