World Dairy Expo will honor four dairy leaders at the 2013 Dinner with the Stars banquet on Wednesday, Oct. 2 at the Alliant Energy Center in Madison, Wisconsin. “We are very excited to feature the accomplishments of these four individuals for their contributions to the dairy business,” said Bob Kaiser, who served as interim general manager of World Dairy Expo when the winners were first announced. “These world-class dairy industry leaders were nominated and selected by their peers, and it is appropriate that they be honored at World Dairy Expo, ‘Center of the Dairy Universe,’” he said.
DAIRYMAN OF THE YEAR: Velmar Green
Velmar Green from Green Meadow Farms There’s a saying at Green Meadow Farms that “the latchstring is always out.” It means that people are welcome all the time — even the general public. “We’re pretty open and have always been with the public,” says proprietor Velmar Green.
College students, including vet med students from Michigan State University, are at the farm much of the time, gaining valuable experience.
And, the farm is a rewarding place to work for the employees, some of whom have been there for more than 30 years.
A positive approach to people is one of the things that elevated Velmar Green to Dairyman of the Year status. Green has been a dairyman all his life. It’s been more than an occupation — it’s been a passion and something that he and his wife, Margaret, have always enjoyed. He has had good cows and good production — and the cows have always paid the bills.
“Dairy farming has been very good to us over the years,” Green says. And, Green has certainly given back to the industry. He has been active in numerous organizations. For 36 years, he served as treasurer of Michigan Milk Producers Association and was a member of the co-op board for 42 years.
Working with Michigan Milk Producers Association, it was always his goal to work cooperatively with other co-ops through the National Milk Producers Federation to benefit all producers. In 2012, he was chairperson of the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development Commission. He is the former chair of the National Milk Producers Federation Animal Health Committee and has been instrumental in many national animal health issues. He also represented the dairy industry on the U.S. Animal ID Working Group Task Force.
It all makes sense. Over the years, the home farm — Green Meadow Farms — has been instrumental in providing leading dairy genetics, practical research application for universities, and leadership in state and national organizations.