Bruce McAbee (born 1951) is an American farmer and financial services executive specializing in agricultural lending who established scholarship programs for future New Mexico agricultural entrepreneurs when he served as president and CEO (2003–2008) of Farm Credit of New Mexico, the state's largest agricultural lender, before becoming executive vice president (EVP) of Fresno Madera Farm Credit in 2008.
Personal history and education
McAbee was born in Earlimart, California, and raised on his family's cotton and grape farm. He served for four years in the United States Air Force and then attended California State University, Fresno, in Fresno, California, where he earned a bachelor's degree in agricultural business. Following his graduation in 1974, McAbee ran his own farm for three years before starting his agricultural-lending career in central California over the next 25 years.
With his family, he lived and worked in Albuquerque, New Mexico, from 2003 to 2008, before moving back to Fresno, California, in the summer of 2008, to assume an executive vice presidency at Fresno Madera Farm Credit, where he had previously worked for ten years, from 1993 to 2003.
Career in banking and agricultural lending
McAbee’s early work in the agricultural lending sector included positions at Yuma Production Credit Association, Bank of America, and Bakersfield Production Credit Association. From 1993 to 2003, he was senior vice president and director of credit operations for Fresno Madera Farm Credit in Fresno, California.
Farm Credit of New Mexico
In 2003, succeeding Joe E. "Eddy" Ratliff, he became president and CEO of Farm Credit of New Mexico, the state’s largest agricultural lender, where he sought to expand credit opportunities for young people interested in beginning or maintaining careers in farming and ranching. McAbee launched the Growing Futures program in 2005, which readjusted lending requirements while reducing interest rates and waiving fees for borrowers ages 35 and younger. In an interview published in New Mexico Business Weekly, McAbee explained the genesis of the Growing Futures program and its mission: "We looked around the state and realized that we needed to do whatever we could to encourage young farmers and ranchers to stay in the state and to make agriculture their livelihood. There are not that many incentives for young people to stay on the farm."
In 2006, McAbee also launched a $250,000 scholarship program providing a $2,000 annual scholarship to the children and grandchildren of Farm Credit of New Mexico members enrolled as undergraduates at New Mexico State University.
During the 2008 U.S. federal campaign election cycle, as president and CEO of Farm Credit of New Mexico, McAbee contributed to the Farm Credit Council Political Action Committee (PAC), as he had also done since 2003 as both vice president and president of that credit institution. Representing Farm Credit of New Mexico, as its president, he sent a letter endorsing the legislative lobbying organization People for Preserving Our Western Heritage.
Fresno Madera Farm Credit
In July 2008, McAbee resigned from Farm Credit of New Mexico, where he was succeeded by Alfred Porter, Jr., and returned to Fresno Madera Farm Credit (FMFC), in Fresno, California, in order to join the administration of President Tom Brown, in which he had worked from 1999 to 2003, as an executive vice president (EVP).
- Dennis Domrzalski (NMBW Staff) (2005-04-15). "Ag Lender Puts Up Millions to Stem Loss of Young Farmers" (Web). New Mexico Business Weekly. bizjournals.com (American City Business Journals, Inc.). Retrieved 2008-08-27.
- Marvin Tessneer (Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News) (2003-06-25). "Farm Credit of New Mexico Board Names New President" (Web). Las Cruces Sun-News. AccessMyLibrary.com. Retrieved 2008-08-27. (Free AccessMyLibrary membership registration required for access).
- "Fresno Madera Farm Credit Company Profile". Fresno Madera Farm Credit. Retrieved 2008-08-27.
FMFC is a federally chartered, member-owned, credit institution with two subsidiaries (Fresno Madera Production Credit Association and Fresno Madera Federal Land Bank Association, FLCA) operating under the authority of the Farm Credit Act. FMFC provides service to eligible borrowers in the central San Joaquin Valley.
- Tom Brown (July 2008). "President's Message" (PDF). Fresno Madeira Farm Credit Connection. Fresno Madeira Farm Credit. Archived from the original (Web) on 2011-07-11. Retrieved 2008-08-27.
... [F]ormer employee, Bruce McAbee, has returned to FMFC. Bruce previously worked for FMFC for 10 years; including five (5) years in my administration from 1999 to 2003. He was instrumental in setting the foundation for the success that we have enjoyed.
- "Farm Credit Gives $250,000 for Endowed Scholarship at NMSU". High Plains/Midwest Ag Journal. High Plains Journal, Inc. 2005-12-15. Archived from the original (Web) on 2013-01-25. Retrieved 2008-08-27.
- "Bruce Mcabee Political Campaign Contributions: 2008 Election Cycle" (Web). CampaignMoney.com. Retrieved 2008-08-27.
- "Letters and Public Statements". People for Preserving Our Western Heritage. Retrieved 2008-08-27.
Letter of endorsement from Bruce McAbee, Farm Credit of New Mexico....
- "Former Socorroan Promoted to Top Position". El Defensor Chieftain. 2008-07-16. Archived from the original (Web) on 2011-07-18. Retrieved 2008-08-29.
Submitted to El Defensor Chieftain By Farm Credit of New Mexico.