Advisory Board

The Advisory Board’s core functions are to 1) advance the HICAHS vision and mission and 2) ensure HICAHS is grounded in the needs of the regional agricultural community. The Advisory Board’s representation is from across sectors, commodities, and geographies, enabling HICAHS to better meet its mission and further our regional and interdisciplinary approach.

Advisory Board Members 2022-2027

Agricultural Industry/Producer Organizations

AJ Ferguson
VP Membership Analysis and Information Technology
Utah Farm Bureau Federation

Rick Naerebout
Chief Executive Officer
Idaho Dairymen’s Association

Agricultural Producers

Juan Velez, MV, MS
Chief Agricultural Officer
Aurora Organic Dairy

Extension and Academia

Jeff Bender, DVM, MS
Professor and Director
Upper Midwest Agricultural Safety and Health Center (UMASH)
University of Minnesota

Gilbert John, PhD
Assistant Dean for Research
College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences
Colorado State University

Angie Johnson
Farm and Ranch Safety Coordinator
North Dakota State University

Peter Kolb, PhD
Associate Professor
Forestry Extension
Montana State University

Maristela Rovai, DVM, PhD
Associate Professor
Dairy Extension Specialist
South Dakota State University


Wade Werbelow
Foreign Labor Certification Program Manager
Wyoming Workforce Services

Insurance and Workers’ Compensation

Trent Brewer
Safety Consultant
Pinnacol Assurance, Colorado

Worker Health and Advocacy

Bethany Boggess Alcauter, PhD
Director of Evaluation and National Agricultural Worker Health Program
National Center for Farmworker Health

Jenifer Rodriguez
Managing Attorney
Migrant Farm Worker Division
Colorado Legal Services


The HICAHS Leadership Team acknowledges, with gratitude, the service of long-time advisory board members who completed their terms in September 2022, including Ragan Adams, Shawn Archibeque, Keith Belk, Kevin Dole, Jeff Edwards, Alvaro Garcia, Herb Gibson, Paul Gunderson, Robert Hagevoort, Dan Hair, David Knell, Jessica Lemmel, Matt Nonnenmann, Brian Schiller, and Mike Taylor.