Farm Credit System
Established by Congress in 1916, Farm Credit is one of the nation's oldest financial institutions created to provide a dependable source of financing and financial services for agricultural purposes and rural housing. Farm Credit is an equal credit opportunity lender and an equal housing lender. Our members, the same people who borrow from Farm Credit, own us. As a stockholder, you elect the board of directors that govern your lending institution. We obtain funds from the sale of bonds and notes in the national money market. Loans and financial services are made through our nationwide network of local lending institutions.
Code of Ethics
All directors and employees of Golden State Farm Credit are responsible for maintaining the highest standards in conducting business. In that regard, a Code of Ethics has been established for the Board of Directors, Executive Leadership Team, and all Association staff. The Code of Ethics supplements Golden State's Standards of Conduct Policy.
Click here for the Association's Code of Ethics Policy.
Rob Faris has served as President and Chief Executive Officer since April 2019. He also serves as the Vice Chairman for the AgVantis Board of Directors, our technology services provider, since January 2019, and has been a member of the Board since 2014. He was previously the President and Chief Executive Officer for Farm Credit Services of Colusa-Glenn, ACA. Rob began his career in agricultural lending in 2000. His career experience includes credit, business banking and management. Rob is based in the Chico Administrative office.
Dave Lehrman has served as Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer since February 2020. Prior to this appointment, he was Senior Vice President and Chief Appraisal Officer. Dave has been employed with the Farm Credit system since 1986 and served in several roles including Appraisal Manager for Golden State Farm Credit and Federal Land Bank of Kingsburg, FLCA. His career experience includes operations, business development and management. Dave is based in the Kingsburg office.
Zach Clark has served as Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer since July 2021. Prior to this role, he served as Vice President, Controller from 2019-2020 and interim CFO from August 2020 through July 2021. Zach is a licensed certified public accountant and certified fraud examiner. Before his employment in the Farm Credit System, he worked as a manager for a large regional public accounting firm focused on providing CPA services to businesses in the agricultural sector. Zach is based in the Chico Administrative office.
Justin Nunes has served as Senior Vice President and Chief Credit Officer since September 2021. He has been working in the Farm Credit System for 15 years in various roles, including loan officer and credit administrator. Justin served as the Regional Vice President until his current role where he was responsible for managing the credit team in the North region. He brings experience in agriculture lending and credit procedures and administration. Justin is based in the Chico Administrative office.
Mike Rico has served as Senior Vice President and Chief Lending Officer since September 2021. He has been working in the Farm Credit System since 1996 with various associations. Prior to his current role, Mike has served as the Branch Manager in Hanford and most recently in the role of Regional Vice President, where he was responsible for managing the credit team in the South Valley region. He brings experience in agriculture finance and lending. Mike is based in the Kingsburg office.
Board of Directors
Mr. Fry is Vice President of Ag Operations for Olam Spices. Mr. Fry also farms tree fruit, pistachios and walnuts in partnership with his brother. Prior to joining the Golden State Farm Credit, ACA Board, he served on the Federal Land Bank Association of Kingsburg, FLCA Board since 2006. His term expires in 2026.
Mr. Long grows almonds and does custom farm management of almonds, walnuts and prunes. He is a member of the Tehama County Farm Bureau and Red Bluff High School AG Advisory Committee. Prior to joining the Golden State Farm Credit, ACA Board, he served on the Northern California Farm Credit, ACA Board since 2005. His term expires in 2024.
Mr. Andersen is a third generation farmer in Vina, along with his family, he owns and operates Andersen & Sons Shelling and Andersen & Sons Ranch where they farm walnuts, almonds and prunes throughout Tehama, Butte and Glenn Counties. Mr. Andersen is an active supporter of Tehama County Farm Bureau and Los Molinos High School FFA. He has served on the Golden State Farm Credit, ACA Board since 2018. His term expires in 2023.
Mr. Bates, along with his son, grows mandarins, walnuts and timber in Fresno and Tulare Counties. He is on the Board of Fowler Fruit Growers Cooperative and Fowler Packing Company where he served as CFO for over 30 years. He is also serving on the Board of the Central California Food Bank and is a retired member of the American Society of CPA’s. He has served on the Golden State Farm Credit, ACA Board since 2018. His term expires in 2023.
Mr. Knight and his sons run a diverse farming operation in Glenn and Butte Counties. Their main crops are rice, almonds, walnuts, prunes, tomatoes, vineseeds, sunflowers and alfalfa. They also own and operate Dixon Seed, Inc. Mr. Knight serves on the Glenn Colusa Irrigation District Board and is an active supporter of Hamilton High School FFA. He was elected to the Golden State Farm Credit, ACA Board in 2019. His term expires in 2024.
Mr. Nicolaus grows almonds, walnuts and seed crops in Butte County. His family owned business, Nicolaus Nut Company, provides custom farming, planting and harvest operations. He is a general partner in two farming and land development partnerships in the Chico area. Mr. Nicolaus is chairman of the Zimmerman Scholarship Committee, member of the North State Hulling Co-op, and a Butte County Farm Bureau member. Prior to joining the Golden State Farm Credit, ACA Board, he served on the Northern California Farm Credit, ACA Board since 2006. His term expires in 2025.
Mr. Rocha is the owner-operator of R&R Farms, which consists of pistachios and row crops and K&M Ag, an agriculture composting and trucking business in Kings County and surrounding areas. He is a member of Kings County Farm Bureau, a supporter of the E.A.T Foundation, actively involved with local 4-H and FFA programs as well as the Kings Fair in Hanford. He has served on the Golden State Farm Credit, ACA Board since 2022. His term expires in 2027.
Mr. Mattos retired from CoBank in March of 2021 where he served as a Relationship Manager for nine years. He worked with Farm Credit Associations as well as lending to cooperatives in California. Prior to joining CoBank, he worked in the Farm Credit System for USAgBank, Western Farm Credit Bank, Sacramento Farm Credit Bank and Fresno-Madera Production Credit Association. He received a Bachelor of Science in Ag Business from Cal Poly and an Associate Degree from Modesto Junior College. He was appointed to the Golden State Board in 2022.
Ms. West is Chief Financial Officer at Ostara Nutrient Recovery Technologies. Previously, she provided consulting services for a broad range of clients with large, complex agribusinesses from 2019 to 2021. Prior to that, she served as Chief Financial Officer at Actagro, LLC from 2009 to 2019. Before joining Actagro in 2009, she served as Finance and Credit Manager for a California-based manufacturer, and as Senior Accountant at two public accounting firms. She received an MBA with an emphasis in Finance from California State University at Fresno and a Bachelor of Business Administration in Marketing from Pacific Lutheran University. Ms. West is a certified public accountant. She was appointed to the Golden State Board in 2017.
Interested in running for our Board?
The Golden State Farm Credit board consists of twelve members: ten are elected by Golden State Farm Credit stockholders and two are appointed by the board. Directors are responsible for representing the best interests of Golden State Farm Credit and its borrowers. Customers can impact the business by electing the board of directors who set policy.
The board meets ten times a year to review operating results and provide strategic direction for the Association.