SANTA ROSA, Calif., (June 24, 2024) – The farmers and ranchers who own American AgCredit elected Steven Van Houten to the cooperative’s board of directors. Van Houten, who currently serves as Chief Executive Officer of Rancon Group and its Europa Village Winery and Resort, has more than 25 years of business experience.

“Steven led Europa Village’s team through exponential growth, creating one of the largest – and most award winning – wineries in Southern California,” said Gary Harshberger, chair of the American AgCredit board. “This experience and expertise will be invaluable on our board as we set the future growth path for American AgCredit.”

According to Harshberger, globalization, regulations, and changing consumer demands create an extremely competitive and commoditized marketplace across all of agriculture today. As a mission-based Farm Credit cooperative, American AgCredit focuses on how to best serve farmers and ranchers as they face these challenges and opportunities today, and long into the future.

“Strategic planning is one of my passions,” said Van Houten. “It drives success, and I’m looking forward to the work we’ll do together on the American AgCredit board to build success.”

American AgCredit finances a diverse agriculture portfolio, including dairies, tree nuts and fruit, vegetables, beef cattle, and field crops – as well as vineyards and wineries, which at 16% represent the largest part of the company’s loan business.

A 24-member board governs American AgCredit and oversees the management of the cooperative. Of these directors, 20 are elected by the stockholders and represent the geographic regions of American AgCredit’s territory. Four are appointed by the elected directors. For more information about the board, board committees, responsibilities, and election process, please visit


American AgCredit was chartered in 1916 as part of the nationwide Farm Credit System and is the nation’s fifth-largest Farm Credit association. American AgCredit specializes in providing financial services to agricultural and rural customers in California, Colorado, Hawaii, Kansas, New Mexico, Nevada, and Oklahoma, and serves capital market customers throughout the United States.

American AgCredit’s financial services include production and mortgage financing, equipment and vehicle leasing, crop and life insurance, lines of credit, and the Young, Beginning and Small Farmer Program. American AgCredit also provides interest-free loans for qualifying 4-H, FFA and AgYouth programs, and college scholarships to students interested in agriculture. Learn more at

For more information:

Chris Carter, Media Relations, American AgCredit,, (804) 314-4841

Steven Van Houten headshot for download



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