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 are responsible for maintaining the highest standards in conducting business. In that regard, Codes of Ethics have been established for the Board of Directors and for the Chief Executive Officer, Chief Financial Officer, Chief Credit Officer, and other financial professionals. These Codes of Ethics supplement Golden State's Standards of Conduct Policies for directors and employees.

  • Code of Ethics for the Board of Directors

    Golden State Farm Credit, ACA (Association) and its Board of Directors (Board) commit to conduct business in accordance with the highest ethical standards as set forth in this Code of Ethics and the Standards of Conduct Policy for Association Directors (Policy), which are applicable to all members of the Board relating to ethical conduct, conflicts of interest, and compliance with the law.

    This Code of Ethics applies to all members of the Board, elected or appointed, all of whom are instrumental in providing oversight to all Association activities, including accurate and complete financial reporting. The Association is responsible for the preparation and distribution of its financial statements and related disclosures and for providing relevant information that is true, accurate, and complete to CoBank, ACB for use in preparing the CoBank District (District) and Farm Credit System (System) financial statements and related disclosures.

    The Board expects all of its members to act in accordance with the highest standards of personal and professional integrity in all aspects of their activities, to comply with all applicable laws, rules and regulations, to deter wrongdoing, and abide by the Policy and other policies and procedures adopted by the Board that govern the conduct of its members. This Board Code of Ethics is intended to supplement the Policy.

    In agreeing to this Board Code of Ethics, each director pledges and agrees to:

    1. Engage in and promote honest and ethical conduct, including the ethical handling of actual or apparent conflicts of interest between personal and professional relationships.
    2. Avoid conflicts of interest and disclose to the Association Standards of Conduct Official and the Chairperson of the Association’s Audit Committee, as appropriate, any material transaction or relationship that reasonably could be expected to give rise to a conflict of interest, or the appearance of a conflict of interest.
    3. Take all reasonable measures to protect the confidentiality of non-public information about the Association and its customers obtained or created in connection with its activities and to prevent the unauthorized disclosure of this information. Disclosure will only be made when it is authorized by applicable law, regulation or legal or regulatory process.
    4. Ensure, through its oversight activities, full, fair, accurate, timely and understandable disclosure in Association financial statements and related financial reports or communications, as well as Association reports and documents filed with, or submitted to, CoBank or the Farm Credit Administration.
    5. Comply with applicable governmental laws, rules and regulations, as well as the rules and regulations of self-regulatory agreements to which the Association is a party.
    6. Promptly report any possible conflicts of interest or other possible violations of the Board’s Code of Ethics by the director, or by any other director, to the Chairperson of the Audit Committee. If this violation is potentially material to the District’s financial statements, the Chairperson of the Audit Committee will coordinate with management to develop a notification to the CoBank General Counsel or Chief Executive Officer, as appropriate. The Chairperson of the Audit Committee shall determine the appropriate course of action. Any issues involving the Chairperson of the Audit Committee will be reported to the Vice Chairperson of the Audit Committee.

    In agreeing to this Board Code of Ethics, directors understand they are prohibited from directly or indirectly taking any action to fraudulently influence, coerce, manipulate or mislead the Association’s independent public accountant for the purpose of rendering the financial statements of the Association misleading. Further, actions of directors, at all times, and shall be constructive to the process of generating timely and accurate financial reporting. In addition, it is understood that directors will be held accountable for adherence to the Board’s Code of Ethics and Policy and that failure to observe the terms of this Board Code of Ethics or the Policy may result in Board disciplinary action. A violation of the Board’s Code of Ethics or Policy may also constitute a violation of law and may result in civil and criminal penalties for the director, for the Board, or for the Association.

    All possible violations reported will be investigated. Any actual violation of this Board Code of Ethics will be reported by the Chairperson of the Audit Committee to the Board, and the Chairperson of the Audit Committee will coordinate with management to develop a notification to the CoBank General Counsel or Chief Executive Officer and the CoBank Audit Committee, along with a corrective action plan that has been developed with respect to the actual violation.

    Directors who have questions regarding the best course of action in a particular situation should promptly contact the Chairperson of the Audit Committee or the Association’s Standards of Conduct Official.

  • Code of Ethics for Employees

    Board Approval Date: December 16, 2020, June 15, 2016
    References: Audit Committee Charter Policy; Standards of Conduct Policy for Association Employees; Whistleblower Program

    Golden State Farm Credit, ACA (Association) and its officers, and employees are committed to conduct business in accordance with the highest ethical standards as set forth in the Standards of Conduct Policy for Association Employees (Policy), which is applicable to the officers, and employees relating to ethical conduct, conflicts of interest, and compliance with the law.

    This Code of Ethics applies to all employees. The Association is responsible for the preparation and distribution of its financial statements and related disclosures and for providing relevant information that is true, accurate, and complete to CoBank, ACB (CoBank) and Federal Farm Credit Banks Funding Corporation (Funding Corporation) for use in preparing the Farm Credit System financial statements and related disclosures. The Association expects all of its employees to act in accordance with the highest standards of personal and professional integrity in all aspects of their activities, to comply with all applicable laws, rules and regulations, to deter wrongdoing, and abide by its Policy and other policies and procedures adopted by the Association that govern the conduct of its employees. This Code of Ethics is intended to supplement the Policy.

    In agreeing to this Code of Ethics, each employee pledges and agrees to:

    1. Engage in and promote honest and ethical conduct, including the ethical handling of actual or apparent conflicts of interest between personal and professional relationships.
    2. Avoid conflicts of interest and disclose to the Association Standards of Conduct Official or CEO or Association Audit Committee any material transaction or relationship that you have that reasonably could be expected to give rise to a conflict, or the appearance of a conflict of interest.
    3. Take all reasonable measures to protect the confidentiality of non-public information about the Association and its customers obtained or created in connection with its activities and to prevent the unauthorized disclosure of this information unless required by applicable law or regulation or legal or regulatory process.
    4. Produce full, fair, accurate, timely and understandable disclosure in Association financial statements and related financial reports or communications, as well as Association reports and documents filed with, or submitted to CoBank, the Funding Corporation and/or the Farm Credit Administration.
    5. Comply with applicable governmental laws, rules and regulations, as well as the rules and regulations of self-regulatory agreements to which the Association is a party.
    6. Promptly report any possible conflicts of interest or other possible violation of this Code of Ethics by you or by any other employee, officer, or director to the Association Standards of Conduct Official or Association Audit Committee. If this violation is potentially material to the System financial statements, the individual contacted will notify the CoBank General Counsel or Chief Executive Officer or the CoBank Audit Committee.

    Reporting a possible violation to the Association Standards of Conduct Official or Association Audit Committee in connection with this Code of Ethics may be accomplished through the Association Whistleblower Program, which ensures the employee may remain anonymous.

    In agreeing to this Code of Ethics, employees understand they are prohibited from directly or indirectly taking any action to fraudulently influence, coerce, manipulate or mislead the Association’s independent public accountant for the purpose of rendering the financial statements of the Association misleading. Further, their actions at all times shall be constructive to the process of generating timely and accurate financial reporting. In addition, employees understand that they will be held accountable for adherence to this Code of Ethics and that their failure to observe the terms of this Code of Ethics or the Policy may result in disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment. A violation of the Association’s Code of Ethics or the Policy may also constitute a violation of law and may result in civil and criminal penalties for employees, their supervisors, or the Association.

    For your information, all possible violations reported will be investigated. Any actual violation of this Code of Ethics will be reported to the Association Board of Directors, along with the corrective action plan with respect to the actual violation.

    If you have any questions regarding the best course of action in a particular situation, the Association Standards of Conduct Official or CEO should be promptly contacted.

    The Code of Ethics is signed electronically by all employees as part of Golden State Farm Credit Service’s Annual Disclosure process.

Executive Leadership

Rob Faris

President and Chief Executive
Officer
Read Bio Close Bio

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

Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Read Bio Close Bio

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

Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Read Bio Close Bio

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

Senior Vice President and Chief Credit Officer Read Bio Close Bio

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

Senior Vice President and Chief Lending Officer Read Bio Close Bio

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

Michael Fry

Board Chair Read Bio Close Bio

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.

Gregory W. Long

Vice Chair of the Board Read Bio Close Bio

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.

Mike Andersen

Director Read Bio Close Bio

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.

Jim Bates

Director, Audit Committee Vice Chair Read Bio Close Bio

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.

Stephen Brown

Director Read Bio Close Bio

Mr. Brown is a dairyman and farmer. He also serves on the California Dairies, Inc. Board of Directors. Prior to joining the Golden State Farm Credit, ACA Board, he served on the Federal Land Bank Association of Kingsburg, FLCA Board since 2009. His term expires in 2025.

Michael R. Chambers

Director Read Bio Close Bio

Mr. Chambers grows walnuts, prunes, and pears in the Gridley area. He is involved with Butte County Farm Bureau and Sunsweet Growers, Inc. Prior to joining the Golden State Farm Credit, ACA Board, he served on the Northern California Farm Credit, ACA Board since 1987. His term expires in 2023.

Casey Jones

Director Read Bio Close Bio

Mr. Jones and his family farm peaches, plums, pluots, nectarines, apricots and almonds in the Kingsburg area. Mr. Jones is the Managing Partner with Sun Valley Packing in Reedley. Mr. Jones also serves on the California Fresh Fruit Association Board. He has served on the Golden State Farm Credit, ACA Board since 2017. His term expires in 2022.

Pete Knight

Director Read Bio Close Bio

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.

George R. Nicolaus

Director Read Bio Close Bio

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.

Vernon Peterson

Director, Compensation Committee Chair Read Bio Close Bio

Mr. Peterson, along with his family, grows organic stone fruit and chickens in Kingsburg. Additionally, the family packs stone fruit, pomegranates and citrus for a few dozen of their neighbors. He has served on the Golden State Farm Credit, ACA Board since 2016. His term expires in 2026.

Terri West

Appointed Director, Audit Committee Chair Read Bio Close Bio

Ms. West serves as an appointed Director. From 2009-2019, Ms. West served as the Chief Financial Officer at Actagro, LLC. Currently, she is consulting for businesses in the agriculture industry, as well as a private equity client. Prior to joining Actagro in 2009, Ms. West served as Finance and Credit Manager for a California-based manufacturer and as Senior Accountant at two public accounting firms. She received an MBA in Finance from California State University, Fresno and Bachelor of Business Administration in Marketing from Pacific Lutheran University. Ms. West was appointed to the Golden State Farm Credit, ACA Board in 2017. Her term expires in 2023.

Vacant Board Position

Appointed Director Read Bio Close Bio

GSFC currently has a vacant appointed Board of Director position. If intersted in applying, please complete the Candidate Interest form.

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.

Candidate Interest Form

Fill out my online form.