IL Pork Producers Association Announces New Board Members


IL Pork Producers Association Announces New Board Members

The 2023 Illinois Pork Producers Association (IPPA) delegate body recently elected four At-Large Directors and three new District Directors. The IPPA board consists of six district representatives, twelve At-Large positions, and representatives from the following organizations: Illinois Farm Bureau, Illinois Purebred Swine Council, National Pork Board, and National Pork Producers Council. They meet quarterly to discuss promotion of pork products and meeting the needs of pig farmers across the state.


The newest District Directors are Kaylee Hillinger, District #2; Beth Spiekermeier, District #3; and Dr. Will Fombelle, District #5. The newest At-Large Director is Randy Kuker. Three current At-Large Directors were re-elected to serve another term, including Chad Leman, Rachel Schulte, and Cheryl Walsh. Also, recently appointed to fill an At-Large vacancy, is Tyler Main.


Kaylee Hillinger—District #2 Director


Kaylee Hillinger, along with her husband, Derek, two children, Ada and Myles, and two beloved dogs, are new residents of Mahomet. Kaylee has been working at Boehringer Ingelheim Animal Health for the past eight years in sales and marketing roles within the swine division. Prior to that, she gained pork industry experience with multiple production systems and university research while completing her undergrad degree in Animal Sciences and master’s degree in Animal Ag Production, both at the University of Illinois. As an IPPA Allied Industry Member, Kaylee has served on a variety of committees, including Production Tech and Research, Expo, and Marketing.


Outside of work, Kaylee enjoys photography. She and her family love traveling and experiencing new cultures around the world. They also spend a tremendous amount of time outdoors and are excited to have a new home on a couple of acres for gardening and more room to play. Kaylee is excited to represent the Illinois Pork Producers and is thrilled for this opportunity.


Beth Spiekermeier—District #3 Director


Beth Spiekermeier is a Finishing Records Department Manager with over 17 years’ experience in multiple facets of the swine industry. In 2005, she was a Bronze Tablet graduate from the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana with a BS in Animal Science. Following graduation, she


joined the Carthage System and held multiple roles within both Professional Swine Management, LLC, and Carthage Veterinary Serve, Ltd., such as laboratory technician, logistics, manager and training, and education coordinator. In 2014, she transitioned to PIC as a health assurance specialist where she worked with producers and veterinarians in areas such as biosecurity, managing data, event planning, and project management. In 2021, she rejoined Carthage Veterinary Service, Ltd. as a Junior Data Analyst and recently accepted the position of Finishing Records Department Manager.


Beth is passionate about helping others succeed in the swine industry, educating people, and improving processes to make everyone’s lives better. She currently lives in Carthage, Illinois, with her husband, twin teenage daughters, and a small personal zoo which includes a dog, a guinea pig, and a bearded lizard.


Dr. Will Fombelle—District #5 Director


Dr. Will Fombelle grew up on a farrow-finish swine farm near Atwood, Illinois, where he was actively involved in the day-to-day operation of the farm. His family converted their farm from sows into a contract finishing operation which continued until his father retired in 2018. Dr. Fombelle was also involved in 4-H and showed pigs at local and state fairs for ten years.


Currently, he is a veterinarian and a partner in Carthage Veterinary Service based out of Teutopolis, where he lives with his wife, Michelle, and their three children: Madison, Emma, and Charlie. He works closely with clients in Illinois, as well as surrounding states, managing the health of their swine herds, to ensure the success and longevity of their farms.


Dr. Fombelle enjoys interacting with the swine producers in Illinois, visiting their farms, and seeing them continue to excel and grow. He looks forward to serving on the IPPA board and being able to interact with even more Illinois pork producers.


Randy Kuker—At-Large


Randy Kuker has been working in the pork industry since 1998 after he finished serving four years in The United States Marine Corps. He worked in both large and smaller systems in Iowa, Minnesota, and, most recently, Illinois. His background is in both Sow and Grow Finish production and his passion has always been to develop strong teams so that they can execute proven protocols successfully, challenge one another, and look for creative ways to improve performance.


Randy is currently the Director of Livestock at The Equity in Effingham. He oversees a team that markets 300,000 pigs annually for four different producers. They provide health and production management, logistics, record keeping, feed, and labor services to their partners.


Randy currently lives in Clinton with his fiancé. They have a blended family of 8 kids, ranging from 8-25 years old, and welcomed their first grandchild last year. They stay busy at home with a 40 head cow/calf operation and a couple of horses. Randy used to be a farrier, and he still likes to do some blacksmithing and enjoys making knives from time to time.


Chad Leman—At-Large


Chad Leman, the newly elected 2023 IPPA president, is a third-generation farmer from Woodford County. He owns Leman Farms, Inc., which includes the production of hogs, corn, and soybeans. Partnering with contract growers, they market approximately 100,000 hogs each year while utilizing much of their corn production in feed rations for their pigs. In addition, they have operated a Pioneer seed dealership since 1991.


He and his wife, Staci, have been married since 1995 and have four daughters: Tessa, Darcy, Sofie, and Sierra. Chad is actively involved in his community, having previously served on the Eureka CUSD school board and currently as an elder at New Castle Bible Church in Mackinaw, IL. Professionally, Chad is a shareholder and board member of several organizations that contribute to the livelihood of his core business: raising pigs.


Rachel Schulte—At-Large


Rachel Schulte and her husband, Kyle, live in Oakford with their two children, Reagan and Kendra. Rachel grew up on a farrow-to-finish and row crop family farm, named Bauer Pork and Brooks Farms, in Cass County, Illinois. Rachel met her husband while she was interning for the Maschhoff’s in southern Illinois. During veterinary school, Rachel and Kyle had their first child, Reagan.


Rachel services farmers in southern Illinois and Indiana and has traveled to China to teach biosecurity. As an IPPA member, she has served on the Production Technology and Research Committee and the Education and Youth Committee.


Cheryl Walsh—At-Large


Cheryl Walsh and her two daughters, Reagan and Rylie, are from Princeville. As a 4th generation farmer, she grows corn, soybeans and hay with her family. They also have around 35 calf/cow pairs in addition to 2,200 sows. Their farm is a breed to wean, where all weaned pigs are sold directly to a great group of customers.


For the last ten years, Cheryl has conducted the Ag in the Classroom project in Peoria County. The program started with 120 classrooms and has expanded to over 250 classrooms. Cheryl serves as the vice president on the Peoria Farm Bureau and was recently voted the 2023 IPPA President-Elect.



Tyler Main—At Large


Tyler Main works on his family’s grain and swine farm. His family grows corn and soybeans and raises pigs from wean to finish. He earned his associate degree from Black Hawk East and his bachelor’s degree from Illinois State University, where he majored in Agronomy Management.


Upon graduation in 2016, he spent the summer on a wheat harvest out west and returned home to the family farm at the end of August. He currently serves as a director on the Knox County Soil and Water board, is active in the Knox County Young Farmers Committee through Farm Bureau, and is a volunteer on the Altona Fire Department.  




IPPA delegates also voted on the following officer team for the 2023 year:

  • President: Chad Leman, Secor
  • President-Elect: Cheryl Walsh, Princeville
  • Vice President-Treasurer: Josh Maschhoff, Nashville
  • Secretary: Thomas Titus, Elkhart



Lana Shovlin, Communications Director

Illinois Pork Producers Association

O: 217-529-3100                     C: 757-339-6077          





The Illinois Pork Producers Association (IPPA) represents more than 1,600 pork producers throughout Illinois and the Illinois pork industry, which contributes more than $1.8 billion and more than 10,500 jobs to the state’s economy. IPPA is comprised of county pork producer groups in approximately 20 counties throughout Illinois. IPPA is an affiliate of the National Pork Producers Council and the National Pork Board.