CoBank Board Approves Special All-Cash Patronage Distribution for 2020 Totaling an Estimated $106 Million

  • Incremental Payment Will Represent a 21% Patronage Increase for Most Eligible Customer-Owners
  • CoBank Also Announces 2020 Board Officers

DENVER (December 14, 2020) — CoBank, a cooperative bank serving agribusiness, rural infrastructure providers and Farm Credit Associations throughout the United States, today announced that its board of directors has unanimously approved a special all-cash patronage distribution for eligible customer-owners.

The distribution, totaling an estimated $106 million, will be made in March 2021 in addition to the patronage program payments the bank had initially targeted to make to member-borrowers under its various patronage programs. For most eligible borrowers, the distribution will represent a 21% increase in patronage.

“In spite of extraordinary challenges in the marketplace environment due to the COVID-19 pandemic, CoBank has been able to deliver exceptional business and financial results throughout 2020,” said Kevin Riel, chair of the CoBank board of directors. “Under our structure as a financial cooperative, customer-owners benefit from this success through patronage, which remains a core element of the CoBank value proposition. Our board is gratified to approve this special distribution, and committed to supporting our customers through this uniquely challenging period.”

This special patronage distribution to eligible customer-owners was approved at the board’s recently concluded December meeting. It will be based on average daily loan balances held by the bank during the year and vary by patronage pool, as detailed in the following table.

Customer or Loan Type Patronage Special Patronage
Program Rate Rate %
Agribusiness, Communications & Project Finance 95 bps 20 bps 21%
Rural Electric & Water 80 bps 16.5 bps 21%
Affiliated Associations 36 bps 7.5 bps 21%
Loans Purchased from Farm Credit Institutions 95 bps 20 bps 21%
Nonaffiliated Farm Credit & Other Financing Institutions 26 bps 4 bps 15%
Final patronage totals, including both distributions, will be announced in February as part of CoBank’s year-end earnings announcement.


Also today, CoBank announced board officers for 2021. The CoBank board elects its officers to serve a one-year term commencing January 1 and expiring December 31 each year.

Kevin Riel will continue to serve as board chair. Riel has been a director since 2014, and board chair since 2018. He is the president of Double ‘R’ Hop Ranches, Inc., a diversified farming operation primarily growing hops, in Harrah, Washington. He is a former director of Northwest Farm Credit Services, one of CoBank’s affiliated Farm Credit associations, where he served as vice chair and chair.

Kevin Still will serve as first vice chair. Still has been a director since 2002 and is the president and chief executive officer of Co-Alliance, LLP, a partnership of five cooperatives supplying energy, agronomy and animal nutrition, producing swine and marketing grain in Avon, Indiana. He is also the owner and president of Still Farms, LLC, a grain farm, and serves as an executive or director of various agricultural retail and energy cooperatives.

Jon Marthedal will serve as second vice chair. Marthedal has been a director since 2013 and is the owner and operator of Marthedal Farms in Fresno, California, a grape, raisin and blueberry farming operation, and serves as vice chair of The Farm Credit Council. Marthedal also serves as a director of several agricultural cooperatives and trade associations.

“I look forward to working closely with Kevin, Jon and the rest of our directors in the coming year,” Riel said. “Our board and executive management team are fully committed to preserving and building the long-term financial strength of the bank so it can continue fulfilling its mission and delivering dependable credit and financial services to our customers.”

CoBank’s 2021 board will consist of 14 directors elected by customer-owners from six voting regions across the country, as well as two outside directors and two appointed directors.

About CoBank

CoBank is a $148 billion cooperative bank serving vital industries across rural America. The bank provides loans, leases, export financing and other financial services to agribusinesses and rural power, water and communications providers in all 50 states. The bank also provides wholesale loans and other financial services to affiliated Farm Credit associations serving more than 70,000 farmers, ranchers and other rural borrowers in 23 states around the country.

CoBank is a member of the Farm Credit System, a nationwide network of banks and retail lending associations chartered to support the borrowing needs of U.S. agriculture, rural infrastructure and rural communities. Headquartered outside Denver, Colorado, CoBank serves customers from regional banking centers across the U.S. and also maintains an international representative office in Singapore.

Forward-Looking Statements

Certain of the statements contained in this news release that are not historical facts are forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Our actual future business may differ materially and adversely from our expectations expressed in any forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are typically identified by words such as “believe,” “expect,” “anticipate,” “intend,” “estimate,” “plan,” “project,” “target,” “may,” “will,” “should,” “would,” “could,” or similar expressions. Although we believe that the information expressed or implied in such forward-looking statements is reasonable, we can give no assurance that such projections and expectations will be realized or the extent to which a particular plan, projection or expectation may be realized. These forward-looking statements are based on current knowledge and subject to risks and uncertainties. We encourage you to read our Annual Report and Quarterly Reports located on the bank’s website at We undertake no obligation to revise or publicly update our forward-looking statements for any reason.

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Knowledge Exchange