Center for Rural Affairs board announces leadership changes
On Saturday, Feb. 18, the Center for Rural Affairs board of directors met by conference call to discuss granting an extended leave of absence to Chuck Hassebrook, executive director and long-time staff member of the Center.
The board voted, without dissent, to grant Hassebrook up to 10 months of unpaid leave, beginning March 1. Hassebrook requested the leave in order to run for public office.
"As board president, I have every confidence in our staff's ability to keep the Center and our work for rural America moving forward," said Jim Knopik, Fullerton, NE farmer and Center board president. "I've seen many changes at the Center since I first became a supporter 14 years ago. I can tell you the Center continues to be in a strong position - now as much as ever."
According to Knopik, Hassebrook has been with the Center for 34 years and was named director in 1996, serving in that capacity for the last 16 years.
The Center board, in other action, voted to implement a succession plan previously developed by Center board and staff and tapped Assistant Executive Director Brian Depew to fill the role of acting executive director. Depew will assume the interim position on March 1, 2012.