Shane Stephens, President Cotton Growers Warehouse Association is a service organization whose members are producer-owned warehouse businesses. CGWA members are dedicated to high standards in receiving, storing, handling and shipping its member's cotton. Preservation of and enhancing the US cotton industry's reputation in the global marketplace is paramount to CGWA's mission.

Shane Stephens, was elected president of the CGWA at its annual meeting in June 2017. Shane is Vice President of StaplCotn Coop and is headquartered in Greenwood, Mississippi.

CGWA began in 1957 as a means to share information with other grower-owned warehouse operations. Initially, labor, building construction, mechanical operations, bale packaging, receiving, and shipping and management practices were the primary focus. The CGWA is now a major cotton warehouse association, which plays a leadership role in policy development and proactive practices to protect the quality, integrity of the bale and improve the flow of cotton to textile mills around the world.

Member associations pay dues to the National Cotton Council and clearly have a vested interest in the long term success of the U.S. cotton industry.

From its earliest days, CGWA members provided leadership for industry improvements and standards. Working with other segments of the cotton industry, CGWA members played key roles in converting trading standards to net weight trading, industry-wide conversion to universal density bale standards, creation and adoption of electronic warehouse receipts, participation in industry led experimental bale packaging programs, and proactive recommendations for enhancing cotton flow.

The CGWA is integral to the NCC policy development to advance industry efficiencies through establishing a consensus for the Cotton Flow Standards, creation of the Permanent Bale Identification system, adoption of advanced sensor technology for optically reading bale tags, and innovative automation systems; CGWA also works with the industry to employ research and education programs for optimum cotton moisture levels in cotton bales and industry campaigns for zero lint contamination and programs to assure safety of employees and guests.

Spurred by findings from three foreign mill missions led by CGWA members in collaboration with Cotton Council International in 2003, the CGWA was instrumental in advancing Council policy and practices for a stronger campaign aimed at new innovations in cotton bale packaging and renewed emphasis on contaminant-free fiber.

The CGWA maintains an excellent working relationship with the Cotton Warehouse Association of America (CWAA) in which the two associations periodically engage in dialog and progressive actions affecting cotton warehouse storing, handling and distribution.

In 2007 CGWA employed services of Dr. Andrew Jordan, former National Cotton Council Vice President Technical Services and Executive Director of the Cotton Foundation, to serve as CGWA Executive Director. The association maintains a strong governmental affairs presence in Washington by retaining services of Hunt Shipman, former Washington Congressional and Administration Official. Among Shipman's priorities are to amplify NCC's voice, along with special needs of our producer-members in this crucial arena.

Our 14 member organizations serve more than 14,000 producers in a dozen cotton producing states, handling approximately 40% of the US cotton production.