The winners will be celebrated at an awards banquet on Oct. 3 as part of World Dairy Expo activities in Madison, Wis. They are:

Dairyman of the year, Frank Regan

Regan farms in partnership with three brothers. Together, they milk between 500 and 600 cows at Regancrest Farms in Waukon, Iowa. (Regan says his World Dairy
Expo recognition is really a team award.)

“We do try to pay close attention to those cows,” Regan says. “We just try to keep them healthy and bred back and making us money.”

“Frank has always had a keen eye for dairy cattle,” said John Meyer, chief executive officer of Holstein Association USA, in nominating him for the award. “His purchase of Snow-N-Denises Dellia at the Midwest Spring Show in 1991… proved to be a historic decision for the world’s Holstein herd,” Meyer adds. Dellia’s mating to Emprise Bell Elton resulted in a bull, Regancrest Elton Durham-ET, that will go down in history as one of the greatest sires.  

Industry person of the year, Steve Larson

“Through the written word, Steve has had a positive influence on dairy producers throughout the United States and world,” said the Holstein Association’s John Meyer in nominating him for the award. As managing editor of Hoard’s Dairyman, Larson “has championed important dairy industry causes through his written editorials on national and international dairy policy, milk marketing, dairy-product promotion, feeding and nutrition, mastitis and herd health, and dairy cattle breeding,” Meyer said.

Dairy woman of the year, Deb Reinhart

Reinhart, along with her husband, David Geiser, own and operate a 250-cow dairy in east-central Wisconsin where she is dairy manager.

“We are economically competitive through grazing, purchasing our feed and other least-cost management practices,” she says. “We are good stewards of the land and our livestock. We strive to be a credit to our community through leadership and example.”

She is an advocate for farm families and farming issues on the local, state and federal level. She works with politicians and government agencies at all levels to affect positive changes for agricultural policies.


International person of the year, Juan Debernardi

Debernardi is the Argentinean distributor for Cooperative Resources International.

“Juan has been a leading importer of U.S. genetics into Argentina for many years,” says Gordon Doak, president of the National Association of Animal Breeders. “Juan has been a leader in the education of dairy producers in the value and use of quality proven U.S. genetics. The increase in production resulting from the use of U.S. genetics has greatly benefited the Argentine dairy producer as well
as consumers.”