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Potatoes USA Appoints 2022 – 2023 Industry Outreach Committee Co-Chairs

August 18, 2022

Left to right: Leah Halverson and Shelley Olsen

DENVER (August 18, 2022) – Leah Halverson of Grand Forks, North Dakota, and Shelley Olsen of Othello, Washington were elected to the Potatoes USA Executive Committee on March 9, 2022, at the organization’s Annual Meeting. Halverson is starting her second three-year term on the Board and her second year on the Executive Committee. She was previously an administrative member of the Industry Outreach Committee. This is Olsen’s fifth year serving on the board and her second year on the Executive Committee, previously, a Co-Chair for the Domestic Marketing Committee, of which she was also an administrative member for three years.

Halverson has been in the potato industry for over 20 years and is the Director of Marketing at Black Gold Farms, a fourth generation of a family-owned farm. Black Gold Farms primarily grows chipping potatoes and is based out of North Dakota with nine additional farms throughout the United States. As Co-Chair, Halverson is looking forward to increasing industry members’ engagement and excitement to promote what we love, potatoes! In addition to serving on the Potatoes USA Board, Halverson is a member of the National Agri-Marketing Association (NAMA) and is also involved with the Marketing & Merchandising Council for United Fresh as well as the Northern Plains Potato Growers Association.

Olsen works under two family-owned companies, LJ Olsen and Two O’s Inc., where three generations work together, including her parents-in-law, Lynn and Marthann, her husband Chris, who previously served on the Potatoes USA Board, and her two sons, Owen and Connor and his wife, Kaitlyn. Their focus is on growing potatoes for frozen processing. Olsen looks forward to sharing the board’s exciting and forward-thinking programs and promoting the positive messages with other potato growers. In addition to her involvement with Potatoes USA, Olsen is the Chair of the Potato Leadership and Education Foundation Board and is a 2015 Potato Industry Leadership Institute graduate.

The Industry Outreach Committee oversees industry communications. The committee is focused on expanding the awareness of Potatoes USA’s marketing and research programs, establishing Potatoes USA as the go-to resource for the industry, and, most importantly, increasing engagement and involvement by the industry in Potatoes USA promotional programs and activities.


About Potatoes USA
Potatoes USA is the national marketing and promotion Board for the 2,000 potato farming families operating in the United States. Potatoes USA, the largest vegetable commodity board, was established in 1971 by potato farmers to promote the benefits of eating potatoes. For more information on Potatoes USA’s mission to “Strengthen Demand for Potatoes,” visit

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