TUCKER, Ga. – The US Poultry & Egg Association appointed Bernard Leonard, former group vice president of food service poultry and prepared foods for Tyson Foods Inc., as a representative to the US Farmers & Ranchers Alliance (USFRA) board of directors.

Leonard replaces Gary Cooper, chief operating officer of Cooper Farms and past chairman of USPOULTRY. Cooper is stepping down from the post after serving two years on the USFRA board.

“I look forward to representing US Poultry & Egg Association in USFRA, consisting of such a wide range of prominent national, regional and state agricultural groups and industry partners," Leonard said. "These partners have embraced the responsibility that stewardship of our food, our land, and our animals brings. USFRA is committed to leading the conversation to provide answers to consumer’s questions about how our food is grown and raised.”

Leonard spent 13 years with Tyson Foods, and brings many more year of experience to the role of board member, according to USPOULTRY. He has held executive-level management positions with Hudson Foods, Southland Foods, and ConAgra. He also has been chair of both US Poultry & Egg Association and the National Chicken Council, and active in the Boy Scouts of America organization.

“Throughout his career, Bernard’s efforts have been integral in producing a safer, more sustainable poultry product, and he understands first-hand the importance of modern agricultural practices in providing healthy choices for everyone," said John Starkey, president of USPOULTRY. "We look forward to his continued leadership on the USFRA Board."