Markham, Rosentrater recognized for industry contributions at FEW

By BBI International | July 14, 2021

BBI International and Ethanol Producer Magazine on July 14 recognized Steve Markham and Kurt Rosentrater for their contributions to the U.S. ethanol industry during the general session of the 2021 International Fuel Ethanol Workshop & Expo (FEW) in Des Moines, Iowa.

Markham, who currently serves as director of risk, Global Grain & Processing, at CHS Inc., is the 2021 recipient of BBI’s High Octane Award, which acknowledges a person who has helped the industry progress over time, especially through market development and product championing. The High Octane Award is given to the ethanol industry’s top market builders, strongest advocates and our most ardent and engaged industry supporters.

During his decades-long career, Markham has been a driving force in the development of domestic and international distillers grains usage. He pioneered the practice of third-party marketing for the valuable ethanol industry coproduct. Markham also played an important role in facilitating early research projects for distillers grains and guided industry developments related to rail and barge transportation as market demand for distillers grains grew.

Markham is a passionate advocate of the important work the U.S. Grains Council does to increase global demand for distillers grains and is a regular speaker at the organization’s overseas events.

“BBI is proud to recognize Steve with this year’s High Octane Award,” said Tom Bryan, president of BBI International and editor of Ethanol Producer Magazine. “His belief in the ethanol industry, enthusiasm for our industry’s coproducts, and passionate advocacy has elevated this industry to a higher level. We appreciate all Steve has done to build markets for our most valuable coproduct over the past 30 years.”

Markham said it feels great to be recognized for his work in the ethanol industry. “It never felt like work to me. It was just such a ride. It’s such a great industry to grow with,” he said, noting his favorite part of his career has been all the incredible people he’s gotten to meet. “I never dreamed when I got out of South Dakota State, I’d get to do the things I’ve done, go the places I’ve gone, and meet the people that I’ve met and gotten to know.”

Rosentrater, executive director and CEO of the Distillers Grains Technology Council and associate professor at Iowa State University’s Department of Agriculture and Biosystems Engineering, is the 2021 recipient of BBI’s Award of Excellence, which recognizes individuals who have made significant contributions to the fuel ethanol industry through their research, technical advisory and/or development activities.

For nearly 20 years, Rosentrater’s unique approach to research has helped overcome challenges and improved utilization of distillers grains coproducts. Specifically, his work has helped improve material handing and storage of distillers grains. He was the first to develop a commercially viable method to pelletize 100 percent distillers dried grains with solubles (DDGS). Rosentrater has also helped develop new market opportunities for distillers grains in aquaculture.

“We are excited to recognize Kurt with our 2021 Award of Excellence,” Bryan said. “His two decades of work to advance ethanol coporducts has helped our industry overcome difficult technical challenges while opening new market opportunities. Kurt has also been generous with his time, benefiting industry members by taking on a variety of speaking and teaching roles that have greatly benefited the U.S. fuel ethanol industry.” 

"Receiving this award is such an honor. To be recognized by one’s peers and the companies that I have aimed to serve is a testament to the importance of the work," Rosentrater said. "That I have had the opportunity to contribute to the growth and improvement of this industry is truly humbling.  ... There is still so much work to do in the coproducts and feed ingredients space, and this work is critical to the long-term sustainability and profitability of alcohol production."

Watch the FEW general session live here

About BBI International:
Founded in 1995, BBI International produces globally recognized bioenergy events and trade magazines. In addition to the International Fuel Ethanol Workshop & Expo, the largest, longest-running ethanol conference in the world – BBI International owns and operates the International Biomass Conference & Expo. The company publishes Biomass Magazine, Ethanol Producer Magazine, Pellet Mill Magazine and Biodiesel Magazine as well as a number of ancillary products including maps, directories, e-newsletters and other web-based industry resources.

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