To the Editor,

I am pleased to announce a leadership transition at the Center for Rural Affairs. Assistant Executive Director Brian Depew has been named the new executive director, effective Sept 1. Chuck Hassebrook, who shaped the Center for decades through his hard work and leadership, will depart to pursue new challenges.

This transition follows a thorough and rigorous process the Center for Rural Affairs Board of Directors established some time ago to meet this eventuality.

No one associated with the Center for Rural Affairs can thank Chuck enough for his dedication, hard work and selflessness in serving the mission of the Center for 36 years, 17 of those years as director.

I know I speak for the members of the Centerís Board of Directors and staff when I say we are excited and confident in the abilities and leadership that Brian honed during his time as Acting Executive Director in 2012. And we are fortunate to have his talent and dedication at hand. We have great expectations for the Centerís future.

On Sept. 5, 1973, the Center for Rural Affairs was incorporated as a nonprofit organization. Now, almost 40 years later to the day, we head into a new future.

Hereís to another 40 years of representing the best of rural America.

Jim Knopik,

Center for Rural Affairs

Lyons, Neb.