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Holstein Association USA is pleased to award thirteen U.S. Registered Holstein® breeders as 2017 Herd of Excellence recipients. The Herd of Excellence designation was introduced in 2008 to honor dairymen who have bred and managed Holstein cattle that consistently perform at the highest levels.

New for 2017, there are three herd size divisions. Divisions are based on the number of cows included in production averages for each herd. The categories are as follows: 10-99 cows, 100-499 cows, and 500+ cows.

“It is important to be sure that we recognize a diverse set of herd sizes through our Holstein Association USA recognition programs. We are excited to be able to bring attention to Registered Holstein breeders who are achieving truly exceptional performance with their herds under a variety of management styles, and feel that the new award structure meets that objective,” said Lindsey Worden, Executive Director of Holstein Genetic Services.

This year's honorees are:
500+ herd size division
• The Adams Family, Sugar Creek Dairy, Elkhorn, Wis.
ME Production Averages - 32,322M 1,330F 1,004P
Age-Adjusted Classification Score: 84.7 Homebred: 95%
• Paul, Theo and Donald Ossmann, Emerald Acres Holsteins, De Pere, Wis.
ME Production Averages - 31,450M 1,215F 949P
Age-Adjusted Classification Score: 83.5 Homebred: 93%
• The Siemers Family, Siemers Holstein Farms Inc., Newton, Wis.
ME Production Averages - 36,851M 1,376F 1,091P
Age-Adjusted Classification Score: 85.2 Homebred: 95.9%
• The Zwald Family, Bomaz Inc., Hammond, Wis.
ME Production Averages - 32,199M 1,237F 1,023P
Age-Adjusted Classification Score: 84.6 Homebred: 99%

100 to 499 herd size division
• The Breunig Family, Mystic Valley Dairy LLC, Sauk City, Wis.
ME Production Averages - 33,119M 1,291F 994P
Age-Adjusted Classification Score: 84.9 Homebred: 83.1%
• The Koester Family, Koester Dairy Inc, Dakota, Ill.
ME Production Averages - 33,789M 1,311F 1,061P
Age-Adjusted Classification Score: 84.6 Homebred: 98.5%
• Daniel J. & Nancy Pagenkopf, Paradise-D Holsteins, Lancaster, Wis.
ME Production Averages - 32,879M 1,463F 1,007P
Age-Adjusted Classification Score: 85.3 Homebred: 93.9%

10 to 99 herd size division
• Robert J. Behnke, Bur-Wall Holsteins, Brooklyn, Wis.
ME Production Averages - 34,590M 1,268F 1,084P
Age-Adjusted Classification Score: 88.5 Homebred: 79.7%
• Joseph A. Brantmeier, Hilrose Holsteins, Sherwood, Wis.
ME Production Averages - 35,723M 1,285F 1,047P
Age-Adjusted Classification Score: 88.9 Homebred: 89.5%
• S. Scott & April D. Cooper, Appealing Holsteins, Delta, Pa.
ME Production Averages - 34,490M 1,332F 1,024P
Age-Adjusted Classification Score: 85.8 Homebred: 97.3%
• Jeffrey A. & Kate Hendrickson, Jeffrey-Way Holsteins, Belleville, Wis.
ME Production Averages - 34,097M 1,287F 1,071P
Age-Adjusted Classification Score: 89.2 Homebred: 96.5%
• Thomas J. Kestell, Ever-Green-View Holsteins LLC, Waldo, Wis.
ME Production Averages - 39,984M 1,584F 1,218P
Age-Adjusted Classification Score: 88.3 Homebred: 90.3%
• Bruce and Brenda Long, B-Long Holsteins, New London, Wis.
ME Production Averages - 34,865M 1,264F 1,057P
Age-Adjusted Classification Score: 87.5 Homebred: 100%

To be recognized with this honor, herds must have classified within the last year and have an age-adjusted average classification score of 83 points or higher; have at least 70 percent of the herd homebred; and be enrolled in the Association's TriStarSM production records program. Additionally, qualifying herds must meet the following production criteria:
• 10 to 99 cows - 25 percent above breed average Mature Equivalent for milk, fat and protein
• 100 to 499 cows - 20 percent above breed average Mature Equivalent for milk, fat and protein
• 500+ cows - 15 percent above breed average Mature Equivalent for milk, fat and protein

Read more about these remarkable herds in the Spring 2017 issue of the Holstein Pulse. Select pages of the Pulse are available online at under Latest News, then click on the Holstein Pulse.

Holstein Association USA, Inc.,, provides products and services to dairy producers to enhance genetics and improve profitability–ranging from registry processing to identification programs to consulting services. The Association, headquartered in Brattleboro, Vt., maintains the records for Registered Holsteins® and represents approximately 30,000 members throughout the United States.