Ag Faces in the Crowd: Bill Kupsky retires after 30 years of service

Wisconsin State Farmer
Bill Kupsky

Kupsky retires

After more than 30 years of service to Caroline Implement and his customers, Bill Kupsky has retired. Kupsky began his farm equipment service career with Power Equipment, the local Massey Ferguson dealer in Bonduel in 1973, and was later recruited by MF in 1978 to serve as a company service representative.

After returning to the farm in 1987, Kupski started Caroline Implement in the spring of that year as a technician and then later as service manager. He will be succeeded by current service manager Ernie Thorp.

Jessica Anderson

Anderson new Energy Advisor

Jessica Anderson is an energy advisor for Wisconsin’s Focus on Energy program. Focus on Energy is a statewide program that promotes energy efficiency and renewable energy, funded by Wisconsin utilities. Anderson works for Focus on Energy’s Agriculture, Schools and Government program, implemented by CESA 10.

It is Anderson’s plan to be hands on with farmers, including helping with any paperwork required to receive Focus on Energy incentives and educating them on the cost savings associated with energy efficient equipment and new incentives.

Anderson’s service territory includes Adams, Green Lake, Juneau, La Crosse, Marquette, Monroe, Vernon and Waushara counties.

Will Kramer

Kramer wins Van Sickle Scholarship

The Federated Youth Foundation announced that Will Kramer, a student at the University of Wisconsin Law School, is this year’s winner of the Federated Youth Foundation’s Charles Van Sickle Scholarship.

The $2,000 scholarship is awarded to a pre-law or law student who has an interest in cooperative law. Kramer has worked as an investigator with a U.S. Senate oversight committee under the leadership of then-Senator Herb Kohl and as a safety and risk management consultant to companies large and small across the country, including as an employee of a mutual insurance company.

Allie Fels

Fels is first intern for WMPSA

Allie Fels is the new Maple Marketing Intern for the Wisconsin Maple Syrup Producers Association. The intern has replaced the Maple Queen program and Fels will take on the challenges of helping market the maple syrup industry in Wisconsin and beyond in the coming year.

Fels will attend open houses through the year, the first tree tapping, WMSPA fall tour, work at the Wisconsin State Fair in the WMSPA booth, market the industry at various schools, and other events.

Steve Mason

Mason promoted at WFBF

Steve Mason has been promoted by the Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation to its Comptroller. In this role, Mason is responsible for supervising the quality of accounting and other financial records.

Mason most recently served as WFBF’s General Accountant. He began his new duties on Aug. 17.

Mikayla Wehrle

Wehrle to participate in Pork Leadership Institute

Mikayla Wehrle of New London has been selected to participate in the National Pork Producers Council Pork Leadership Institute (PLI). The program accepts 15-20 individuals each year to take part in grass-roots leadership development activities. As part of PLI, Mikayla will attend NPPC’s legislative action conferences, World Pork Expo, participate in an international trade trip, and more throughout the coming year.
Mikayla is a senior at UW-River Falls majoring in animal science. Mikayla and her family have a 25-sow herd of purebred Berkshires and crossbreds in New London.

Beth Rausch

Rausch honored with Wurtz award

Beth Rausch has been named the recipient of the 2017 Keith Wurtz Award for Teaching Excellence for junior faculty at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls. Rausch, an assistant professor of animal science, joined the UW-River Falls faculty in 2015 and is the lead person for the animal science - companion animal emphasis courses and activities.

In their letters of nomination, her colleagues noted several initiatives Rausch pursued and implemented to develop a meaningful companion animal program. In addition to revising two courses to include time for animal interaction, she also devoted time to developing undergraduate research experiences, internships and the Service Dog training program.

Sonya Huebner

Huebner promoted at WFBF

Sonya Huebner has been promoted to Wisconsin Farm Bureau’s Executive Assistant. Most recently, Huebner has served as an administrative assistant in the operations division at Wisconsin Farm Bureau. Prior to joining WFBF, she held positions at the Wisconsin FFA Foundation and AgSource Cooperative Services/CRI.

As Executive Assistant, her responsibilities will include providing direct support for WFBF’s President and Chief Administrative Officer, administrative support for the 11-member WFBF Board of Directors and assist with preparations for the WFBF Annual Meeting. Huebner begins her new duties on September 25 and succeeds Jill Bennwitz who will retire from Farm Bureau on December 31.

Al Stager

Stager is manager at Barron market

Equity Cooperative Livestock Sales Association announced that Al Stager is now the market manager at the Barron market. In his role, Stager oversees the Barron market operations and staff, as well as maintins relationships with producers, truckers and buyers.

He will work with producers to understand and meet their livestock marketing needs. He has worked for Equity Barron and Altoona for 15 years and most recently as Barron barn supervisor.

Brandon Thesing

Thesing is Corporate Account Manager for Select Sires

Brandon Thesing has been hired to serve as regional account manager for Select Sires. Thesing will be responsible for delivering strong genetic sales support to key clients in the I-29 region (NE/SD/IA/MN).

 Thesing worked for six years with Minnesota Select Sires Co-op, Inc. in account management monitoring systems and outsourced reproductive services for large commercial dairies. Thesing will continue to be employed by Minnesota Select Sires Co-op, Inc., but will help all three cooperatives in northwest Iowa, southern Minnesota and eastern South Dakota.

Adam Brock

WMMB announces additions to staff

The Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board (WMMB) welcomed Adam Brock to the organization as its new Director of Technical Services and Ben Kroeplin as its new Digital Content Manager.

Brock joins WMMB with over 14 years of experience in food quality and research and development. As the Director of Technical Services, Brock will support Wisconsin dairy companies through the enhancement of technological capabilities, food safety program assistance and supply of critical technical and regulatory information to provide the safe, high quality products customers demand. 

Ben Kroeplin

Kroeplin joins WMMB with more than a decade of experience in marketing, communications, and broadcast journalism.  Most recently he worked as a senior communications specialist at University of Wisconsin Whitewater.

As Digital Content Manager, Kroeplin will develop strategy for the organization’s digital marketing campaigns including acting as lead in the development and production of WMMB’s new Wisconsin to Table recipe video series.  

Zlesak is Distinguished Teacher of the Year

Associate professor of Horticulture David Zlesak has been named the 2017 recipient of the Distinguished Teacher Award at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls. The Distinguished Teacher award is the most prestigious honor bestowed at UW-River Falls. Nominations are submitted by senior level students and recent graduates. 

David Zlesak

“Above and beyond” was a phrase mentioned in more than one of Zlesak’s nomination letters, describing his efforts both inside and outside of the classroom and as a mentor.

Zlesak is also a successful plant breeder, especially roses. For all his efforts, the American Rose Society awarded Zlesak the Silver Honor Medal (2014), named him an Outstanding Consulting Rosarian (2017) and honored him with their Rising Star Award in September 2017.