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Former president of Wis. Federation of Cooperatives drowns
MARQUETTE, Mich. (7/23/10)--Rod Nilsestuen, secretary of Wisconsin's Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection and a long-time former president/CEO of the Wisconsin Federation of Cooperatives, drowned Wednesday evening while swimming in Lake Superior off Michigan's Upper Peninsula (Wisconsin State Journal and Madison.com July 22). He had been on vacation, working for Habitat for Humanity in northern Michigan, an activity he had performed every summer. Nilsestuen, 62, had been secretary of the state agency since 2003. He served as president of the cooperatives organization from 1978 to September 2002. He helped establish the Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board, the Wisconsin Corn Promotion Board and the Wisconsin Soybean Marketing Board, and was a founding chairman of the National Rural Cooperative Development Task Force. He is survived by his wife and three sons. Funeral services will be Tuesday at Bethel Lutheran, 312 Wisconsin Ave., Madison, Wis., with visitation at 10 a.m.-1 p.m. and a memorial service at 1 p.m.


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