Agriculture Faces in the Crowd

Wisconsin State Farmer

CALS Honorary Recognition awardees

On Oct. 13 the University of Wisconsin-Madison College of Agricultural and Life Sciences (CALS) will present its highest awards bestowed by the college to Ben Brancel, Bernard Easterday, Richard “Otto” Wiegand and Gary Onan.

2016 Honorary Recognition Award

Ben Brancel

Ben Brancel began his career in agriculture on his family farm. In 1972, he graduated with a degree in animal science from the University Wisconsin-Platteville, and returned to the farm where he and his wife Gail would eventually take over operations. He served in the WI State Assembly from 1987 to 1997, and as Assembly Speaker.

Since 1997, he has served as the Secretary of the Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP).

Bernard Easterday

Bernard Easterday is the founding dean of the School of Veterinary Medicine (SVM) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. After receiving his DVM degree from Michigan State University in 1952, he served as an officer in the U.S. Army Veterinary Corps where he conducted research on the transmission and pathogenesis of viral diseases of animals and humans.

As a faculty member at UW-Madison College of Agriculture (now the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences), he conducted and collaborated on multiple studies involving the interspecies transmission of viruses, which included uncovering the first conclusive evidence of swine influenza virus transmission from swine to humans.

Richard Wiegand

Richard “Otto” Wiegand was born on a dairy farm in Cleveland in Manitowoc County, which he later operated in the 1980s. He attained four degrees over time, three of them in dairy science from UW-Madison.

Wiegand taught agriculture courses at Northeast Wisconsin Technical College in Green Bay as an adjunct instructor and has been working for UW-Extension as an agriculture agent in Spooner for the past 12 years.

Daryl Lund

Daryl Lund began teaching in UW-Madison’s food science department in 1967 and remained a faculty member for the next 20 years, serving as chair of the department in 1984. In the late 80s, he led the pioneering effort to renovate Babcock Hall through the use of private sector donations.

Lund served two other land grant universities – Rutgers (1988-1995) and Cornell (1995-2000) – where he was a professor, chair, and dean.

Distinguished Alumni Award

Gary Onan

Gary Onan earned his bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees in meat and animal science at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. After graduating, he pursued his dream of becoming a dairy farmer and spent nearly 20 years developing a respected Holstein herd and hands-on knowledge.

Onan joined the UW-River Falls in 1997, where he quickly came to be known for his creativity and inherent knack for teaching. He currently serves as chair and professor of animal and food science in the university’s College of Agriculture, Food, and Environmental Sciences.

Cargill Animal Nutrition adds staff

Cargill Animal Nutrition announces the additions of Dr. Hank Spencer, Jennifer Becker, and Tim Sherven to its Central U.S. dairy team. All three have extensive experience working in the dairy industry, and bring a level of expertise that will help strengthen customer offerings.

Dr. Hank Spencer

Spencer will be focused on both new business development and technical support of customers in Wisconsin and Michigan. Spencer has a proven track record of helping dairies find their hidden problems and improve the profitability of the operation. He has also held leadership roles at both Elanco Animal Health and Monsanto.

Jennifer Becker

As a Dairy Specialist, Becker will be summarizing and analyzing records to assist with the success of Cargill customers. She has worked previously analyzing dairy records and working with producers on implementing new technologies in the AI industry primarily in Minnesota and the Dakotas. In this role, she will be responsible for developing and leading sales and marketing strategies in this space.

Tim Sherven

Tim Sherven will be serving as a Dairy Focus Consultant, working with customers in south central Wisconsin. Sherven previously held a dairy sales position with Furst McNess servicing customers in southern Wisconsin.