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National Dairy Shrine Announces 2017 Award Winners

National Dairy Shrine (NDS) is pleased to announce the winners of the Guest of Honor, Distinguished Dairy Cattle Breeder, Pioneer, Progressive Commercial Dairy Manager and Graduate Dairy Production awards for this year. These awards were designed to honor past, present and future dairy industry leaders that have contributed to strengthening and energizing the dairy industry.

The following is a short biography on each recipient.

Bonnie Mohr is the Guest of Honor, the highest recognition from the National Dairy Shrine. This award goes to an individual that has had a dramatic impact on the dairy industry and its future. Bonnie Mohr is an acclaimed artist that specializes in rural America, the dairy farm and bovines. During her 30 year artistic career she has created hundreds of artworks that can now be found all over the United States and in over 30 other countries. Bonnie has generously donated her time and talent to help numerous dairy organizations raise money with special commissioned works of art. Bonnie with her husband John also operates an excellent herd of Holstein cows.

The NDS Distinguished Dairy Cattle Breeder is Tom Kestell, Evergreen View Farms, Waldo, Wisconsin. His outstanding Holstein herd consists of over 130 milking cows with impressive type and breed leading production. The Evergreen View herd is home to 52 Excellents and 71 Very Good cows with a herd average score of 86 points. The rolling herd average at the end of 2016 on 94 cows was 44,122 lbs of milk, 1,680 lbs of fat 1,362 lbs of protein on 3 time a day milking. To make sure he has accurate records Tom pays to have monthly all three daily milkings utilized for DHIA testing. The Evergreen View herd is home to the current National Champion milk producer, Ever-Green View My Gold EX-93 with a 4 year old record of 365 days, 77,480 Milk, 1,992 Fat and 2,055 Protein. The Ever Green View herd sells 200 cows, 100 bulls and 2,800 embryos per year with many embryos being exported. One of those previous embryo exports turned out to be Flevo Genet Snowman a breed leading sire who was popular all over the world. The Kestell herd was previously recognized by the Wisconsin Holstein Association with its’ Distinguished Breeder Award and by the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture as the Farm Family of the year.

Through an anonymous selection committee, Arnold Knight, Frank Kosikowski, Edward Guthrie, Jack Remsberg and Larry Tande have been selected as National Dairy Shrine Pioneers. This year’s honorees will enter the National Dairy Hall of Fame and are an exemplary display of what this award is about.

Dr. Edward Guthrie of Ithaca, New York is a most respected dairy leader, teacher and researcher at Cornell University. He started his career at Cornell in 1913 and retired in 1948. His research emphasis was on dairy products and he was an early pioneer in butter research. Guthrie wrote the pre-eminent textbook on Butter which was aptly called “The Book of Butter”. It served as the industry bible on butter making for decades. Dr Guthrie believed in cooperative research and was a guiding force on the development the American Dairy Science Association. He felt that the research community would develop faster with annual meetings of dairy researchers from across the country. Dr Guthrie also felt strongly about creating the student affiliate chapters for ADSA and helped initiate those chapters. Guthrie helped create the first National Dairy Products Evaluation contest in 1916 and the 95th version of this contest was just held again in 2017. Throughout his lifetime Dr Guthrie remained focused on students, teaching, research and collaborative efforts to improve the dairy foods industry

Arnold Knight, Markesan, Wisconsin, served numerous leadership roles in the dairy industry. He started his career as a dairy farmer but his leadership was soon noticed by others. He became a director and later President of the Wisconsin Guernsey Breeders Association. He also served on the board of the Wisconsin Purebred Dairy Cattle Association and on the board of World Dairy Expo. Throughout his lifetime Arnold fought for his fellow dairy breeders and became especially active in the development of multiple component pricing programs for dairymen, while he served as a breed fieldman. Arnold was honored by the American Guernsey Cattle Association with the Distinguished Service Award, by the Wisconsin Jersey Breeders with their Distinguished Service Award, and the Wisconsin Dairy Herd Improvement Association with their Friend of DHIA Award. Arnold was a member of National Dairy Shrine and really enjoyed working with dairy youth and served as a mentor to numerous farm kids.

Dr. Frank Kosikowski, Ithaca, New York was a true pioneer in dairy food research and teaching. He taught numerous undergrads as well as 60 graduate students and 30 postdoctoral students. His ability to teach excellence, critical thinking and innovation has lead to many of his students taking leadership positions throughout the world in the food industry. His research on cheese and fermented food products yielded 450 scientific papers, 3 books, 12 patents and numerous technical articles & reviews. He was a founder of the American Cheese Institute. Dr Kosikowski has received numerous honors for his lifetime of effort: they include the Dairy Industry fellowship and Fulbright Research scholarship, the ADSA Borden Award, the ACDPI Nordica international Award, Albert Pollio Memorial Award, Marschall Award and the Institute of Food Technologies international Award. The impact of this renowned educator has been profound and truly important world-wide.

John (Jack) H Remsberg, Jr. Middletown, Maryland has been a pioneer in the art of dairy cattle photography. Jack started his career on a Maryland dairy farm and was a leader in Maryland FFA activities. After a stint in the US Air Force as a first Lieutenant he embarked on his lifetime dream of photographing some of the best cows and bulls in the country. Jack worked with most of the established breeders up and down the east coast and was a mainstay at the Maryland State Fair as well as the Pennsylvania All American. He served as the official photographer for Atlantic Breeders Co-op, Sire Power and Select Sires in helping market their sires. Jack also had the honor to be invited to South America to photograph at the National Show of Columbia. Jack was very active in the Maryland dairy industry and was honored by the University of Maryland with their Meritorious Service Award, the Maryland Holstein Association Distinguished Service Award and inducted into the Maryland Dairy Hall of Fame by Maryland Dairy Shrine.

Larry Tande, Medford, Minnesota has been an outstanding extension leader at the University of Minnesota for 40 years. He started his career in Steele County, Minnesota as an assistant county agent and retired as an Extension District Director in 2001. He advised and mentored hundred of dairy farmers and their children. Always willing to serve the dairy industry he held numerous positions in state and national Organizations. They include the Minnesota Holstein Association, Minnesota Purebred Dairy Cattle Association, Minnesota Livestock Breeders Association, Minnesota State Fair, Holstein Association USA, World Dairy Expo and the Holstein Foundation Board of Trustees. Larry was always a breeder at heart and worked with his own herd of cows until 2013. In addition Larry judged over 620 local, county, & regional shows as well as several State Fairs and National Shows including World Dairy Expo in 2002 and 2006. Larry also judged cattle shows in 7 foreign countries. Previously Larry has been honored by the Gopher Dairy Club with their Distinguished Service Award, the National Pedigree Livestock Council with their Distinguished Service Award and by the National Association of Agricultural Extension Agents by their Distinguished Service Award

The NDS Progressive Commercial Dairy Managers award goes to brothers Andrew and Brian Schilling of Darlington, Wisconsin. This award is designed to recognize outstanding dairy managers early in their careers and to encourage others to look at a dairy production career. These two brothers Limited Liability Corporation milks 650 cows and crops 1600 acres. The brothers believe strongly in cow comfort and working with expert specialists to achieve herd goals. The herd has been honored with the Platinum Award by the National Dairy Cattle Reproduction Council in 2009, 2011 -2015. They have received the top award for milk quality from Rolling Hills Milk Cooperative for the last 9 years. Their dairy has served as a host for the Lafayette County Dairy breakfast on the farm as well as other tours. The brothers also serve their community by serving on the Lafayette County Ag Stewardship Alliance, their local Town Board, and the rural Medical Ambulance Service. Both are active in their church as well.

Garrett Eiholzer of Stanley, New York has been selected as the Graduate Dairy Production Grant winner. This $2500 grant goes to an active dairyman who has graduated from college in the last nine years and has already demonstrated excellent dairy management ability and financial stability. Garrett and his 2 college friends Austin Copenhaven and Clayton Woods have formed a LLC called Ivy Lakes Dairy which is transitioning into complete ownership of a dairy owned by retiring partner Todd Hathorn. The excellent management and financial skills of this group have allowed the dairy to expand to 850 cows. Garrett and his partners believe this is a model that can be very successful in transitioning dairymen who want to retire with enthusiastic young people looking to succeed in the dairy industry. They will continue to seek out willing partners to grow their business. Encouraging young dairy producers is one of the goals of National Dairy Shrine.

If you would like to know more about National Dairy Shrine, please visit our website www.dairyshrine.org. Started in 1949 this non-profit organization honors dairy industry leaders, encourages future dairy leaders and records dairy history at our Museum in Fort Atkinson, Wisconsin. Dairy enthusiasts are encouraged to become a part of the most important national organization honoring dairy leaders, saving our dairy heritage, and inspiring future dairy leaders.

Please mark your calendars and plan to attend the annual National Dairy Shrine Awards Banquet on Thursday October 5 in Madison, Wisconsin. For more information about the banquet or about students, producers or industry representatives being recognized by National Dairy Shrine, please contact Dr. David Selner, Executive Director, at info@dairyshrine.org.