Ray Grabanski, J.D., MS/BS Ag Econ

Ray Grabanski

President, Lead Market Analyst, Attorney

Ray has roots that run deep in agriculture. Ray developed his passion for agriculture growing up on a small grain and livestock farm near Inkster, ND. Balancing working on the farm and college education, Ray worked to triple the family farm's acreage during the difficult 80's while he graduated magna cum laude from North Dakota State University, getting his Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Agricultural Economics. Ray, as part of his M.S. Education, worked as a legislative intern at the 1989–1990 session of the North Dakota Legislature writing bill amendments and bill summaries for the House Ag and State and Federal Government committees, where he developed his passion for the law. Ray firmly believes after a thorough study of economic theory and applying it to a lifetime of business excellence, that just like the Bible teaches, "There is a time for every season...", which includes a time to buy, and a time to sell!

After becoming an extension agent in Grand Forks County in 1989, Ray was quickly promoted to the state office as a farm management specialist. In 1992, Ray struck out on his own to form Progressive Ag, a market consulting/commodity brokerage firm which expanded into crop insurance for a total risk management package, thereby leading to Progressive Ag Systems, Inc., one of the largest crop insurance agencies in the upper Midwest.

Ray continues to be the President providing visionary leadership and direction to all Progressive Ag firms, (Marketing, and Systems—the crop insurance agency), and he has always been the lead market analyst at Progressive Ag Marketing, Inc which has been recognized as the top marketing firm in many surveys Progressive Ag has participated in. PAM is a firm which either has been ranked the best or second best marketing firm each year for corn and soybeans the last 8 years running. For the 8 year track record from 2008–2015, Progressive Ag has blown every CBOT firm out of the water, getting 67c/bu more for corn and $1.03 more for soybeans over the #2 firms—every year for the entire 8 year period. Ray is very proud of what this small, regional firm in Fargo, ND—made up of farm kids with humble roots—has accomplished in such a short period of time, simply becoming the best in the world at what they do, by far.

In 2010 at the age of 48, Ray decided to tackle a lifelong goal, enrolling in law school at the University of ND. While continuing to provide leadership as President of Progressive Ag—Ray graduated cum laude from the University of North Dakota Law School in Spring 2013 and passed the bar, becoming a licensed attorney. Ray prides himself on his legal expertise as it applies to crop insurance law as well as Ag Estate Planning/Transitioning to the Next Generation, but also his in-depth knowledge of agriculture gained from an extremely successful career spanning decades. In particular, Ray focuses on passing control of a successful family farm from one generation to the next, integrating the legal, financial, crop insurance, and estate planning considerations.

Ray's hobbies are water skiing, surfing, and most especially, golfing (a sport he has taken up later in life). Ray's athletic goal at 59 years old is golfing his age - a realistic goal based on how he's lowered his handicap as he ages.