Fortner has been a farmer for 24 years and is the managing partner for Bayou Pierre Farms where he grows peanuts, cotton, soybeans and corn. Fortner is a graduate of Mississippi State University with a Bachelor of Science in agricultural economics and a 2012 graduate of the Syngenta Peanut Leadership Program.
For more than a decade he has been a member of several industry organizations including the Mississippi Peanut Promotion Board as chairman; Mississippi Peanut Growers Association Board as vice president; Claiborne County Farm Bureau Board as vice president; and the Farmers Co-Op Board as president. His volunteer role with the Mississippi Farm Bureau has been extensive and includes serving as past chairman of the bureau’s peanut advisory board, and as a member of the Crop Insurance, Transportation, Farm Fund and Farm Families Campaign committees. He also served with the American Farm Bureau Federation Peanut Advisory and Farm Policy committees, respectively. Fortner is also an active member of the First Baptist Church in Vicksburg.
Fortner and his wife, Karen, have two children, Beth and Lee. When he is not involved with the farm, Fortner enjoys traveling with his family and hunting.
“I am looking forward to serving on the National Peanut Board for a second term,” said Fortner. “I’m honored to be able to represent Mississippi’s peanut producers on a national level and to help make a difference through research development.”