Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board: Meet the Candidates

Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board: Meet the Candidates

Wisconsin Milk Marketing BoardThe Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP) released biographies on the candidates vying for a seat on the Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board (WMMB). The election period runs April 8 through April 27, with results announced later in May.

Please see below for biographies on the 13 candidates, listed by district and in alphabetical order:

District 3 (Lincoln, Oneida, Price and Taylor counties)
Incumbent Ed Jasurda of Phillips is challenged by Mark Leder of Gleason and Renee Zenner of Medford.

Candidate: Ed Jasurda
Farm Name (if applicable): United Pride Dairy, LLC (co-owner with Jon Pesko)
County of Residence: Price
When did you begin dairy farming? 1991
How many cows do you milk? 1,800 cows
Where do you ship your milk? Foremost Farms USA, Milan, WI

Please name any ag-related organizations or affiliations you belong to:
• Foremost Farms USA
• Genex Cooperative
• Northstar Cooperative
• National Holstein Association
• Wisconsin Holstein Breeders
• Professional Dairy Producers of Wisconsin
• Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board

Have you (or your farm) received special recognition or won any relevant awards?
• Genex Cooperative Genesis Herd
• Hosted the 2006 and 2011 Price County Dairy Breakfast
• Holstein USA Progressive Genetic Herd – 9 years

Why do you want to serve on the WMMB Board?
It has been a great honor to have served as the District 3 director for the past few years. The “Wisconsin” brand approach has served the dairy producers of Wisconsin very well. Wisconsin cheese is marketed and favored nationally by consumers! Our state’s producers, cows, processors and retailers, along with WMMB, have a great thing going here! Producers from other states can only wish they had the demand for their dairy products like we do in Wisconsin.

What else should dairy producers in your area know about you?
I am a third-generation dairy farmer. Our family has been milking cows here for 101 years to date! I, like many others, didn’t pay a whole lot of attention to where all the check-off money was going prior to getting on the WMMB board. I’ve learned that we are getting a good return on our check-off investment. I would appreciate the chance to continue to be the District 3 director.

District 3 (Lincoln, Oneida, Price and Taylor counties)
Candidate: Mark Leder
Farm Name (if applicable): Friesian-Knoll Farm
County of Residence: Lincoln
When did you begin dairy farming? In 1986, I graduated from UW-River Falls with a major in Farm Management and a minor in Animal Science. After returning to the farm, I slowly bought my dad out over the years.
How many cows do you milk? 50 cows
Where do you ship your milk? Foremost Farms

Please name any ag-related organizations or affiliations you belong to:
• Farm Bureau
• Holstein Association

Have you (or your farm) received special recognition or won any relevant awards?
• Foremost Farms milk quality awards (SCC under 100,000)
• BAA 107

Why do you want to serve on the WMMB Board?
I would like to see how our money is spent and help jumpstart the industry with some fresh, new ideas. I’d like to see the strategies set for gaining more demand for our product and for promoting the nutritional and convenient benefits of milk.

Nothing against the incumbent, but I’d like to bring my fresh ideas to the table and help get the most bang for our bucks. I’d also like to see more creativity and out-of-the-box thinking…for example, I love that we sponsor the WIAA tournaments. But, why can’t we showcase a bucket of chocolate milk during the awards ceremony and offer the athletes chocolate milk while they get their awards?

What else should dairy producers in your area know about you?
I take care of my cows, always try to produce a quality product and would like to promote what our amazing, hard-working industry does. I’m energetic and creative and would love to help grow demand for our Wisconsin dairy products because there is so much potential.

In addition, I work with the local high school and their apprentice program – I love taking a kid that has never been on a farm and seeing him/her learn about the industry.


District 3 (Lincoln, Oneida, Price and Taylor counties)
Candidate: Renee Zenner
Farm Name (if applicable): R&J Zenner Farms, LLC
County of Residence: Taylor
When did you begin dairy farming? The farm has been in the Zenner family for 134 years and I have farmed with my husband, fourth generation, and his mom and dad for the past 15 years.
How many cows do you milk? 100 cows
Where do you ship your milk? Mullins Cheese

Please name any ag-related organizations or affiliations you belong to:
• Medford Cooperative (currently board chair)

Have you (or your farm) received special recognition or won any relevant awards?
• Century Farm Status

Why do you want to serve on the WMMB Board?
I would like the opportunity to serve on the WMMB to further promote an industry that has been crucial in the success of the state of Wisconsin. As the agriculture industry contributes so highly to the state’s economy and dairy is the largest segment of Wisconsin agriculture, it is imperative to constantly create new and innovative ways to endorse this industry. In order to be able to retain and create jobs in Wisconsin, we need agriculture to thrive and this can be done through proper research, education and promotion. Family dairy farming in Wisconsin is not only a business, but a culture that should be preserved and this can be achieved through proper promotion of the products it produces.

What else should dairy producers in your area know about you?
Fellow dairy producers should know that I am passionate and committed about what I believe in, and I believe that the farming industry is an extremely important part of our economy and way of life. If elected to the board, I will use that passion and commitment to help maintain and grow the milk industry both locally and statewide. In our community, I am also actively serving as Chairman of the Board of Directors for the Medford Cooperative and am the clerk for the Town of Hammel.


District 6 (Chippewa and Eau Claire counties)
Incumbent Vivian Thompson of Cadott is running unopposed.

Candidate: Vivian A Thompson
Farm Name (if applicable): Dunworken Holsteins
County of Residence: Chippewa
When did you begin dairy farming? 1999
How many cows do you milk? 110 cows
Where do you ship your milk? Grassland

Please name any ag-related organizations or affiliations you belong to:
• Wisconsin Holstein Association
• Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board

Why do you want to serve on the WMMB Board?
I have served on the WMMB board for the past three years. It has been a wonderful experience. I have enjoyed working with everyone at local events, as well as statewide events. The meetings have been a learning experience and I hope I have contributed in a positive way. I would really like the opportunity to serve Chippewa and Eau Claire Counties for another three years.

What else should dairy producers in your area know about you?
I am a graduate of Western Kentucky University with a degree in Dairy Science.

District 9 (Menominee, Shawano and Waupaca counties)
Incumbent Jeff Strassburg of Wittenburg is challenged by Donald Robaidek of Pulaski.

Candidate: Donald Robaidek
Farm Name (if applicable): Robaidek Farm Partnership
County of Residence: Shawano County
When did you begin dairy farming? I farmed with my mother and father, and then, since 1990, I own and operate the farm (Robaidek Farm Partnership) with my two sisters Jane and Jean Robaidek.
How many cows do you milk? 61 cows; 75 calves to springing heifers
Where do you ship your milk? Agropur

Please name any ag-related organizations or affiliations you belong to:
• Shawano County Holstein Association

Have you (or your farm) received special recognition or won any relevant awards?
We have received numerous Gold Medal Dam and Gold Medal Sire awards. The farm has also been “Friends of 4-H” for many years. We receive an “Honorary Chapter FFA Degree” from Pulaski FFA in 2007. But the one thing I am most proud of is being Chaperone for the Shawano County Dairy Youth at Wisconsin State Fair and having the youth win the Top Dairy Herdsmanship in 2006 and first blue in 2007.

Why do you want to serve on the WMMB Board?
I would like to serve on the WMMB Board to represent all dairy producers in District 9 to make sure that their dairy dollars are used to make the dairy industry more profitable. I would like to have our dairy farms and the dairy industry promote that farmers produce a healthy and natural product. By using new technology on the farm to make a healthy and natural product, our dairy plants are now producing new variety of cheeses that are healthier for the consumer.

What else should dairy producers in your area know about you?
Having served on the Board for three years, I would like to have dairy products promoted more in our schools as a healthy and natural choice. I feel the youth should be given more opportunities to receive dairy products in school, such as cheese sticks, cheese curds and yogurt. Milk machines need to be placed back into the schools. In our school district, they removed them this last year. I also would like for all dairy producers in District 9 to know that I will be available for any questions and concerns they may have at any time.


District 9 (Menominee, Shawano and Waupaca counties)
Candidate: Jeff Strassburg
Farm Name (if applicable): Strassburg Revocable Trust
County of Residence: Shawano County
When did you begin dairy farming? I began dairy farming with my parents right after I graduated from high school in 1990.
How many cows do you milk? 750 cows
Where do you ship your milk? Land O’Lakes

Please name any ag-related organizations or affiliations you belong to:
• Bowler FFA Alumni
• Dairy Business Association
• Professional Dairy Producers of Wisconsin
• Land O Lakes 68-5 unit representative
• Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board
• Chairman, Center for Dairy Research Committee (WMMB)

Have you (or your farm) received special recognition or won any relevant awards?
• Shawano County Outstanding Young Farmer Award in 2005
• Land O’Lakes Outstanding Young Farmer Award in 2006
• Ryan Wendler Memorial Award 2011
• Century Farm Award 2012 (Fifth Generation)

Why do you want to serve on the WMMB Board?
Currently, I am a director for the WMMB and very excited about getting a chance to represent District 9 for another term. Below I have explained the reasons why I am so passionate about this opportunity.

The dairy industry has been very rewarding for me, and over the years I have developed a network of fellow dairy producers that I speak with regularly and other specialists who I consult with on a daily basis, including my nutritionist, veterinarians, sales people, field staff, dairy co-op leaders and service people. Through talking with these people, I am able to hear other perspectives, which has also helped me make educated decisions on the Board.

I am very grateful to producers in District 9 for electing me three years ago. I have learned a lot about the marketing side of our business. At WMMB, we have many programs in place to create value for Wisconsin milk. With the continued support of the dairy farmers, I hope to be able to represent my fellow dairy farmers’ promotional dollars.

What else should dairy producers in your area know about you?
I am part of Strassburg Revocable Trust located near Bowler, Wisconsin. When I joined my parents in 1990, we milked 68 cows, and have grown gradually over the years, raising all of our own replacement animals. Our operation currently milks 750 cows.

I have been very active with Brunch on The Farm in Shawano County, setting up educational booths to help educate consumers as to where their food comes from.

I have also been active in Shawano County Dairy Promotions, as well as helping Waupaca County reorganize their Dairy Promotions group.


District 12 (Portage, Waushara and Wood counties)
Incumbent Ken Heiman of Marshfield is running unopposed.

Candidate: Ken Heiman
Farm Name (if applicable): Weber’s Farm Store
County of Residence: Wood
When did you begin dairy farming? 1995
How many cows do you milk? 150 cows
Where do you ship your milk? Weber’s Farm Store/Nasonville

Please name any ag-related organizations or affiliations you belong to:
• Central Wisconsin Coop
• Equity Livestock Coop
• Marshfield FFA Alum
• Dairy Business Association (DBA)
• Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board

Have you (or your farm) received special recognition or won any relevant awards?
• Marshfield Small Business of the Year

Why do you want to serve on the WMMB Board?
I’d like to finish some programs that have been started and to help find the next new market area for our milk. We will need to find new markets to promote the growth of agriculture in the state of Wisconsin. Right now, WMMB and industry are working together to build stronger markets for Wisconsin farm milk. This will help everyone in this state.

What else should dairy producers in your area know about you?
We bottle milk on our farm and market it from our farm location. Our cheese plant manufactures cheese from all Wisconsin milk and markets it from coast to coast, and it is also exported to other countries.

District 15 (Adams, Juneau and Monroe counties)
Incumbent Mary Cook of Wilton is challenged by Sandra Madland of Lyndon Station.

Candidate: Mary Cook
Farm Name (if applicable): Ridge-Vu Dairy
County of Residence: Monroe
When did you begin dairy farming? 1968
How many cows do you milk? 200 cows
Where do you ship your milk? Grassland

Please name any ag-related organizations or affiliations you belong to:
• Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board—15 years
• President of Monroe County Dairy Promotions
• Co-Chair Monroe County Dairy Breakfast Committee
• President of Monroe County Dairy Association
• 4-H Dairy Leader and General Leader
• Monroe County Fair Dairy Recipe Chairperson
• Monroe County DHIA
• Monroe County Farm Bureau
• 4-H Dairy Promotion Foods Revue Chairperson
• State & National Brown Swiss Association
• County, State and National Holstein Association
• Farm-First Dairy Cooperative

Have you (or your farm) received special recognition or won any relevant awards?
• Sparta Chamber of Commerce Farm Family of the Year
• DHIA Milk, Fat and Protein Production Awards
• Milk Quality Awards
• Champion and Supreme Champion cattle awards
• Jr. All-American cattle awards
• All-Wisconsin and Jr. All-Wisconsin cattle awards
• Monroe County Dairy Breakfast Host Family

Why do you want to serve on the WMMB Board?
As a dairy producer actively involved in our dairy operation each day, I am seeking re-election to the Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board to be able to continue to be a director on a farmer-owned board that has a direct involvement in the operations and direction of an organization’s marketing, promotion, education and research programs. Without the dairy industry, Wisconsin would be a very different place to live.

WMMB invests Dairy Farmers’ dollars in promotion, education and research activities to make sure Wisconsin continues to have markets for Wisconsin dairy products. The Wisconsin dairy industry contributes over $26.5 billion a year to the state’s economy and accounts for almost 40% of all Wisconsin agriculture jobs. WMMB is the only organization that represents the interests of every Wisconsin dairy farmer in the state and national market place.

Promotion is the spark between our industry and the consumers, cheese companies, students and others. I know the value of educating the consumer and children about the nutritional value of dairy in their diets. We need to continue to communicate to our consumers that we are producing a nutritious, safe, wholesome natural product. Although over 80% of the WMMB budget is dedicated to cheese promotion marketing, another area of importance is the Wisconsin Dairy Council (WDC). An integral program of WMMB, WDC has a presence in over 1,600 schools with programs and materials.

I take an active role in dairy promotion and education in both the school classroom and at many community events. Dairy product education is very important for both students and consumers to be able to make healthy eating choices and informed decisions on the nutritional value of dairy in their diets. We need to encourage purchase and consumption of dairy products. We need to build life-long dairy consumption habits.

I will continue to be very active in the promotion and education of our dairy industry. I would consider it an honor and privilege to continue to represent District 15 dairy producers on the Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board. I would very much appreciate your support and vote.

What else should dairy producers in your area know about you?
I am very active in local and county organizations. I am president of the Kendall American Legion Auxiliary, The Clerk for the Clifton Township, Treasurer of St. Joseph’s PCCW, St Joseph CCD teacher (for 35 years), Tomah Area Cancer board member, a volunteer at the Tomah Veterans Hospital, teacher’s aide sub for Tomah School District Special Needs students, and a Monroe County Board Supervisor.

District 15 (Adams, Juneau and Monroe counties)
Candidate: Sandra Madland
Farm Name (if applicable): Lyndell Dairy
County of Residence: Juneau
When did you begin dairy farming? May 10, 1991
How many cows do you milk? 400 cows
Where do you ship your milk? Foremost Farms USA

Please name any ag-related organizations or affiliations you belong to:
• Professional Dairy Producers of Wisconsin
• Dairy Business Association
• Juneau Co. Farm Bureau
• Holstein USA
• Wisconsin Holstein Association
• Juneau Co. 4-H
• Juneau Co. Fair Dairy Committee
• Juneau Co. Dairy Promotion Board
• Wisconsin Dells Friends of FFA
• Juneau Co. Ag Industry and Recreation Society

Have you (or your farm) received special recognition or won any relevant awards?

  • Foremost Farms Excellent Quality Producer 2006-2012
  • Wisconsin DATCP Division of Food Safety Achievement Award for Outstanding Milk Quality and Commendable Farm Conditions
  • Our farm and family have been featured on the front page of the Agri-View and the Wisconsin State Farmer, highlighting our start in farming and innovative use of team meetings.
  • In 2012, I received the Wisconsin Holstein Association Young Adult Educational Scholarship.

Why do you want to serve on the WMMB Board?
There are some exciting developments taking place in the dairy market place nowadays. Consumers are asking for new and different ways to enjoy dairy products, and processors are answering that need with healthy snack-sized dairy products. Our dairy products are finding homes well beyond our state’s borders. The international demand for high quality dairy products is expanding at a rapid pace and Wisconsin dairy farms can be proud to supply the milk needed for those exports. Only by taking a step off the farm and into the marketplace can we truly hope to shape the future of the dairy industry in Wisconsin into a sustainable and profitable business for our state’s dairy producers, large or small. In our industry we are blessed to be working with a pure, healthy, basic food of life: Milk. I am excited by the possibility of working with other WMMB directors, my fellow district 15 dairy producers and our dairy processors to expand our marketing opportunities for this special product. Serving on the WMMB would give me the chance to contribute my passion for my cows, my drive for success in my business and my commitment to the sustainability of our state’s greatest industry. It is the perfect time to come together to brainstorm, implement and evaluate the efforts we need to showcase and market the thing that only we can produce – Wisconsin milk and milk products.

What else should dairy producers in your area know about you?
My husband Troy and I are first generation dairy farmers. Without family support, we started dairying with 32 cows in a rented barn. Through many hours of sweat equity and careful financial planning, we have been able to grow our business to 400 cows and 1,600 acres today. Over the years, we have had many individuals and organizations help us to succeed. In return, I try to do what I can to give back. I am involved in many youth oriented groups – Juneau Co. 4-H, Lyndon Pioneers 4-H Club Co-Leader, Juneau County Fair Dairy Committee Chair and Dairy Barn Superintendent. I have helped revitalize our Juneau Co. Dairy Promotion Board and attended WMMB sponsored training for county promotion groups. Our family enjoys the opportunities we get to promote dairy at events like the Juneau Co. Dairy Best Breakfast, Juneau County Fair, Wisconsin State Fair and the Wo-Zha-Wa Festival in Wisconsin Dells. Annually we host a “Day on the Farm” for our Wisconsin Dells School District 3rd and 4th graders to experience what it is like to live and work on a dairy farm.

District 18 (Kenosha, Milwaukee, Ozaukee, Racine, Sheboygan, Washington and Waukesha counties)
Incumbent Dean Strauss of Sheboygan Falls is running unopposed.

Candidate: Dean Strauss
Farm Name (if applicable): Majestic Crossing Dairy
County of Residence: Sheboygan
When did you begin dairy farming? Full time in 1998
How many cows do you milk? 1,900 cows
Where do you ship your milk? Sartori and Land O’Lakes

Please name any ag-related organizations or affiliations you belong to:
• Professional Dairy Producers of Wisconsin
• Farm Bureau
• Dairy Business Association
• Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board

Have you (or your farm) received special recognition or won any relevant awards?
• 2003 Wisconsin Jaycees Outstanding Young Farmer “Speak up for Ag” winner

Why do you want to serve on the WMMB Board?
I believe in the future of our dairy industry and want Wisconsin to succeed as a leader in the world market. Wisconsin continues to produce some of the finest cheeses in the world and has the awards to reconcile that fact. Wisconsin artisan cheeses continue to excel in completion and continue to add tremendous value to our dairy producers. Wisconsin has the landscape and infrastructure to help us stay competitive. I believe producers need to be active in helping build and maintain Wisconsin’s brand awareness and take ownership of our actions. We need to promote, be proactive and listen to our consumers. Social media will continue to be a driving force in how consumers gather information about the dairy business. We need to be ready and use some of these tools to our advantage. Dairy producers today still hold a relatively high level of consumer confidence and we need to use that asset to our advantage by telling our story.

What else should dairy producers in your area know about you?
Demonstrating leadership is an important part of Wisconsin’s dairy industry. It is our belief at Majestic Crossing Dairy to be involved and serve when appropriate. The past 3 years I have had the opportunity to serve the producers of District 18 on the Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board. During this time, I was able to serve as chair of the Center for Dairy Research committee and Chair of the Channel Management Committee. This past year, I was able to serve Wisconsin Farm Bureau as their Dairy Policy Chair. Previously, I have had the opportunity to serve on the Professional Dairy Producers of Wisconsin (PDPW) board of directors for six years, cumulating in the role of President. During this time, I was appointed to a position on the Wisconsin Beef Council for six years in an effort to educate consumers about beef and that dairy producers are also producers of beef. In 2006, the opportunity was there to serve as Sheboygan County Farm Technology Days Publicity Chair.

The dairy business is constantly changing and we need proactive leadership that is engaged and in places that can help make a difference. I have had the opportunity through PDPW to serve on the National Dairy Animal Well Being Initiative, which includes a group of stakeholders throughout the dairy industry. Through these experiences, I was better able to understand what the consumers were wanting. This taught me what dairy producers need to be doing in order to validate the care of our animals. This process led Majestic Crossing Dairy to become one of the first in the country to be Validus Animal Welfare Certified.

District 21 (Crawford and Vernon counties)
Incumbent Kevin Walleser of De Soto is challenged by Carrie Callahan of Prairie du Chien.

Candidate: Carrie Callahan
Farm Name (if applicable): Callahan Farms
County of Residence: Crawford
When did you begin dairy farming? We bought the farm two years ago after farming with my in-laws for about ten years.
How many cows do you milk? Around 120 cows
Where do you ship your milk? AMPI

Please name any ag-related organizations or affiliations you belong to:
• Crawford County Farm Bureau

Why do you want to serve on the WMMB Board?
I want to serve on the WMMB because I feel as a dairy producer I have an obligation to my business and the industry as a whole, to do my part to help inform and educate consumers about what we do in order to keep dairying a viable and profitable industry. While I try to do this on a personal level every day, I feel that I should get more involved at a greater level.

What else should dairy producers in your area know about you?
I was raised on a family dairy farm just outside of Prairie du Chien. My parents, Alan and Deanne Hromadka, taught me a lot about the industry and business of dairying. After leaving the farm for a couple years, I returned to farming with my now husband, Josh Callahan where we farmed with my in-laws, while I worked as a team leader at the local farm store. There, I saw firsthand the importance of good marketing on consumer trends. After we bought the family farm from my in-laws and modernized our operation, I now have more time to devote to the things I am passionate about; our dairy industry is one of those things.

District 21 (Crawford and Vernon counties)
Candidate: Kevin Walleser
Farm Name (if applicable): Wall-Stone Holsteins
County of Residence: Vernon
When did you begin dairy farming? 1980
How many cows do you milk? 350 cows
Where do you ship your milk? DFA

Please name any ag-related organizations or affiliations you belong to:
• Vernon County Cattlemen’s Association
• Vernon County Dairy Promotion
• Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board

Have you (or your farm) received special recognition or won any relevant awards?
• Have received many individual cow production awards for Vernon-Crawford DHIA
• State lifetime cow production award

Why do you want to serve on the WMMB Board?
I am an active dairy producer in Vernon County and therefore am interested in the board seat for District 21. I am an incumbent running for reelection. I feel that I have a strong voice and knowledge of our current dairy situation. I am interested in the vacated seat because of the need for a progressive dairy producer to fill the District 21 seat. I can appreciate what it means to serve on a board and feel that my past experiences will be a positive addition to WMMB. This decision to express my interest to become a board member is not short founded. For many years, I have had a desire to understand the mechanics of WMMB and its positive attributes to our dairy industry. It is my sincerest desire to be selected as District 21’s board representative.

What else should dairy producers in your area know about you?
I am a strong voice for agriculture, a forward thinker and have served on several boards for Dairy Farmers of America plus local school and church boards.

District 24 (Dane and Jefferson counties)
Incumbent Tina Hinchley of Cambridge is running unopposed.

Candidate: Tina Hinchley
Farm Name (if applicable): Hinchley’s Dairy Farm
County of Residence: Dane
When did you begin dairy farming? Many years ago when I was college, I worked on a small dairy farm and fell in love with farming. I began milking cows full time when I married my husband Duane Hinchley in 1996. Today we farm side by side, and purchased the family farm in the year 2000.
How many cows do you milk? 100 cows
Where do you ship your milk? Dean Foods

Please name any ag-related organizations or affiliations you belong to:
• United Co-op
• Farmers Union
• Agsource
• Genex
• Cambridge FFA Alumni
• Cambridge 4-H as a leader
• Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board

Have you (or your farm) received special recognition or won any relevant awards?
I was interviewed by Brava magazine in their encore edition 2007-2008 for A Day In The Life of…(a farm woman). Throughout the years of hosting tours and events on our farm, we have been in the media annually. The last event was the Dane County Dairy Breakfast in June of 2009. We have received many Favorite Field Trip Awards from local schools and groups.

Why do you want to serve on the WMMB Board?
I would like to serve on the WMMB because I am very excited about the future of the Dairy Industry. I look forward to the growth of milk sales through new and exciting products. I would like to participate in the “brainstorming” of new ideas to attract new milk drinkers of all ages. I would love to see consumer’s ideas and needs met with products that attract the whole family and become a favorite healthy drink, snack or ingredient in their meal preparation. I believe that MILK should be the number one choice when asked, “What do you want to drink?” I would like to help make that happen.

What else should dairy producers in your area know about you?
PROMOTING DAIRY FARMING THROUGH FARM TOURS.
Shortly after becoming a dairy farmer, I began seeing a change and growing interest in the public’s opinion regarding food production and farming. In 1997, we opened our farm to thousands of visitors annually. I have taken a “pro-active” step to educate others in an “up-close” environment. Visitors can experience our world of farming by walking throughout our farm to see how we milk, raise and care for our cows. I have been able to explain why we do what we do as farmers, and in turn have seen a growing attitude of appreciation towards farming and our rural lifestyle. Promoting the dairy industry has made me a better farmer, and more aware of the general public’s thoughts and fears. To be able to communicate and correct misinformation is easy, and it is the right thing to do. We host farm tours daily April through October.

To vote, DATCP is sending ballots to licensed dairy producers who live within the eight election districts. Producers must return the ballots via mail by April 27. Producers who have not received a ballot by April 22 should contact Noel Favia at (608) 224-5140. More detailed bios can be found on www.wmmb.com/elections.

04.09.2013