To download the 3 page article (Pg 327, 350,351) in pdf format, click here.

The winners placing in the top four or twelve in their respective divisions came from a remarkable eighteen states and one Canadian province. While winners came from coast-to-coast, Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Pennsylvania lead the way with over half of the top scores.

Entries in for the 81st annual contest came from every U.S. state except New Mexico. Judges from Canada, Australia, Belize, Malta, New Zealand, and Turkmenistan also placed all five classes.

Charlie Hamilton, Jr Division winner and Steve Quanz, Sr Division winner

Senior Division

With a 490, SUNY-Cobleskill freshman Steve Quanz topped all competitors with his placings entered as part of the college judging team headed up by John Tyron. Quanz competed on the Steuben County 4-H dairy judging team coached by Don Bossard. Last fall, Quanz represented the New York state 4-H team at the Louisville, Ky., contest. He will compete on his college's judging team this autumn. The Wayland, N.Y., native would like to one day teach animal science at the college level and have a dairy and livestock farm on the side.

In second, with a 488, is Evie Hamilton of Cuba City, Wis. Hamilton owns Hill-Ton Holsteins with her husband, John, and son Charlie. Evie was an honor student at Southwest Tech and holds a degree in agriculture production and services. The Hamilton's 65 registered Holsteins average 26,788 M, 1,053 F, and 783 P. They have received the Progressive Breeder of Registry Award from Holstein USA for the past 17 years and were honored with the Herd of Excellence Award by the national association in 2008. Evie, John, and Charlie have bred or developed over 40 Excellent cows, 16 Gold Medal Dams, and over 20 cows with 200,000 lifetime.

Linda Mann's correct selection of the Reserve Supreme Champion put her in third place over the next two individuals with 484s. Mann, who hails from Franklin, Ind., helps coach the Franklin Community High School FFA dairy judging team.

Brice Titus and Kristie Maynard were in a two-way tie for fourth and fifth place at 484 and selected the same Supreme Champion. After ranking the cows in each class on the five major breakdowns, Titus came in fourth.

Brice Titus has been entering the Hoard's Dairyman Cow Judging Contest every year since he was 7 years old. The now 21-year-old Ferndale, Calif., high school graduate was on the high school's dairy judging team throughout high school. Today, he works at Miranda Dairy and also raises registered Jerseys.

Kristie Maynard, the club leader for the 21-member Pleasant Busy Bees 4-H Club of Houston, Minn., took fifth place. Maynard has participated in the Hoard's Contest since she was in 4-H when her mom, the club leader, would bring contest materials to meetings. The University of Wisconsin-Platteville graduate grew up on her family's dairy farm, and now her children show cattle from the dairy.

Junior Division

Charlie Hamilton's selection of the Reserve Supreme Champion broke a first-place tie at 490. Hamilton, a 15-year-old Cuba City, Wis., freshman with a 4.0 GPA, is the son of John and Evie (who was second in the senior division). He entered the contest as part of his FFA class led by Jill Van Schyndle. Charlie was named a 2010 Young Distinguished Junior Member Finalist by Holstein Association USA. He is president of his 4-H club and secretary of both the FFA chapter and the Grant County Junior Holstein Association. He is very active on 4-H and FFA dairy judging teams. An avid speaker and writer, Charlie won the Holstein USA's 2009 public speaking contest and took first place in this year's online essay contest.

Watertown Lucky Clovers 4-H'er Jolee Miller took second place. The 10-year-old daughter of Kristin and Jeff Miller of Watertown, Wis., Jolee is a fifth grader at Webster Elementary School. Miller credits her club leader, Bill Uecker, for teaching her how to evaluate dairy cows. She looks forward to showing her first calf at the Jefferson County Fair this summer.

In third is Jaclyn Thompson, the 14-year-old daughter of Robin and John Thompson, Pulaski, Pa. She has been entering our contest the past six years as a member of the Sway 4-H Dairy Club led by David Wilson. The Wilmington Area High School freshman lives on her family's 220-acre dairy and swine farm. They milk 50 registered Holsteins and Brown Swiss, raise 50 replacements, and have a 100-sow farrow-to-finish operation. Thompson is a majorette in her high school band and would like to go into veterinary medicine after high school.

A three-way tie between classmates in Doug Raymaker's agriculture class at Bonduel High School was broken by the previously mentioned tiebreakers involving the five descriptive scorecard breakdowns.

Taking fourth was Austin Henn, the 17-year-old son of Thomas and Linda Henn who farm near Bonduel, Wis. A long-time 4-H and FFA member, Henn enjoys showing at both the county and state fair. This high school junior would like to be a police officer one day.

In fifth is Bonduel junior Amber Cina. She is a member of the school's FFA dairy judging team that has competed at district, state, and national contests. Cina is the 17-year-old daughter of Greg and Deb Tauchen. Cina's stepfather, Greg, is co-owner of Tauchen Harmony Valley Dairy. After high school, she would like to attend the University of Wisconsin-River Falls and major in ag business and dairy science.

Family Division

With a 468, Michael and Sara Lewis, and their children, Madison and Aidan, won the family division. Both Michael and Sara grew up on dairy farms and continue to help on those operations. Michael also works in sales at Farm-Way, Inc. The family's interest in dairy judging took root last year when daughter Madison began her 4-H dairy project. Both Michael and Sara, who met in high school, are 4-H volunteers.

The Dale and Cheryl Urbanek Family of Cashton, Wis., took second by less than one point over the third and fourth place families. Dale and Cheryl represent the fifth generation while children Ryan, Casey, and Carrie are the sixth generation to operate the family dairy farm which dates back to 1870. They milk 70 Holsteins and one Guernsey. Casey and Carrie are members of the LaCrosse County 4-H dairy judging team led by Don Langrehr and Jenny Clark. The Cashton High School freshmen are also on the FFA dairy judging team.

A tie between third and fourth place at 464 points was broken based on the selection of Supreme Champion. Craig and Marlene Krohlow and their sons, Travis and Ryan, took third place. The family has been entering the contest for the past 20 years. Craig has judged numerous county fairs and has been a coach for local 4-H and FFA dairy judging teams. They farm 300 acres and have 45 registered Holsteins that average 23,500 M, 940 F, and 729 P with a 112.9 BAA. Craig also is an aAa analyzer, while sons Ryan and Travis are cattle fitters.

In fourth place was the Mark and Elisha Iager Family of Woodbine, Md. Mark manages the dairy and crop operations at Maple Lawn Farms, Inc., Fulton, Md., and has judged local, county, and state shows. He was the high individual of the 1992 National 4-H Dairy Cattle Judging Contest. Today, Mark and Elisha's three children, Madison, Miranda, and Harrison, participate in 4-H dairy, livestock, and equine projects. As a tribute to her brother who died in a farming accident, Elisha started the Harrison Mule Days and has a website for the event:

Ag instructors
JoAnn Peterson has been participating in the Hoard's Dairyman Cow Judging Contest for the past eight years, and her 470 topped the division. The Argyle, Wis., teacher received an agriculture education degree from the University of Wisconsin-Platteville and also studied at CAH-Dronten in the Netherlands for a semester. She grew up on a 500-acre farm near Mazomanie, Wis., that milked 90 Holsteins. In college, she took dairy evaluation with Michael Mee.

Jake Cramer, Janesville, Wis., returns to the winner circle for the third time. In 2006, Cramer placed third overall in the senior division and was fourth in the instructor division two years ago. The University of Wisconsin-River Falls graduate grew up on a Jefferson County dairy farm and showed at state and national Holstein shows as a youth. He still owns some dairy cattle. The Janesville Parker ag instructor was the 2004-2005 Wisconsin State FFA Sentinel. Currently, Cramer is working on his master's degree at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point in environmental education.

In third is Fort Atkinson FFA instructor Steven Merkel. He has been using the contest for the past 15 years as an educational tool in his classroom and was honorable mention in the ag instructor division in 2008. Prior to teaching, Merkel spent 14 years working with dairy producers as a nutritionist. He earned his undergraduate degree at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls in agriculture education and followed that with a master's from the University of Wisconsin-Stout in technology and industrial education.

Taking fourth was Illinois State University graduate Darren Ropp who now teaches at Prairie Central High School in Fairbury, Ill. Ropp's Prairie Central FFA dairy judging team took top honors at the 2009 National FFA Dairy Judging Contest. He was raised on a 100-cow Jersey farm and now helps with dairy projects for daughters Samantha, Savannah, and Sadie who show at county, state, and national shows.

High school teams

For 10 of the past 15 years, the Marshfield FFA has placed at least honorable mention in the FFA/Ag-Ed Division. This year's score of 459.3 placed them in the winner's circle. The school is located in one of the nation's most densely populated dairy areas with students coming from central Wisconsin's Wood, Clark, and Marathon Counties. The Marshfield High School Agriculture Department was named an Outstanding Middle-High School Agriculture Program in Wisconsin for 2002 and 2009. They won the same award on the national level in 2009. As a youth, FFA advisor Tim Heeg received All-American honors by placing in the top 25 individuals at both the National 4-H and National Intercollegiate Dairy Judging Contests at World Dairy Expo.

Claiming second was the Mississinawa Valley High School from Union City, Ohio. The team was lead by ag instructor Stephanie Conway. Led by instructor Steve Zibell, third place was captured by Wisconsin's Oregon High School. And rounding out the top four was the Winona FFA from Fitchburg, Wis. The team is coached by Leah and Londa Johnson.

Winning 4-H teams

The Loudoun County 4-H Dairy Club claimed their third title in the Hoard's Contest by scoring a 478. Previous wins took place in 1997 and 2005. Club leader Nancy Potts reports 4-H'ers range from first- to 10-year members. Last year, one club member was on the Virginia state 4-H team that placed third at the National 4-H Contest at World Dairy Expo. Once a thriving dairy county, today Loudoun County has only one dairy farm. Two club members own calves and offer them to club members without calves. The club also is active in judging, quiz bowl, and community service projects.

A tie at 466 was broken by previously mentioned tiebreakers involving the five descriptive scorecard breakdowns. In the end, The Rolling Clovers 4-H Club of Westminster, Md., led by Sandra Stonesifer placed second. Led by Pat Pehrson, the third place 4-H team was Nicollet County 4-H of St. Peter, Minn. Rounding out the top four was the Friendly Valley 4-H club of Brillion, Wis. The club is led by Lyle Ott.

Top college teams

The University of Minnesota dominated the college ranks by placing first, second, third, and receiving six honorable mentions among the 95 entries in the division. The top three teams included students who are enrolled in Introduction to Animal Science. The Tony Seykora-coached teams had scores of 474, 464, and 460. In fourth, with a 457, was a Kansas State University team coached by Jon Pretz.

Champion co-ops

The winning co-op entry came from Dairy Farmers of America Team Number 1. The co-op with 9,500 member farms was formed in 1998 and has been entering our contest every year. For the second year in a row, the winning team was lead by Greg Mitchell.

Supreme Champion

XANADU CHAMPION KANDY KISS EX 94 was named the unanimous Supreme Champion by our judges. Owned by Ben Sauder of Tremont, Ill., she was the 2009 Supreme Champion of World Dairy Expo's junior show and was Reserve All American 5-year-old at the All American Jersey Show in Louisville, Ky., later that fall. The Jersey from River Valley Dairy has an EX 92 dam and an EX 95 granddam. Reserve Supreme Champion was Cook-Farm Out Jennifer-ET EX 90. Owned by Cook Farm of Hadley, Mass., she was the second place 5-year-old at the 2010 Massachusetts Holstein Show. She comes from an EX-93 dam with the next five dams being VG.

For the complete ranking for each category, see pages 327, 350, and 351 in the May 10, 2011 issue of Hoard's Dairyman

To see the 2011 classes and reasons, click here.
Books on dairy judging can also be found in our bookstore. Click to enter!

If your group did not enter the 2011 contest and want to be sure that you are sent our 2012 judging contest pamphlets, email with complete mailing address so we can be sure you are included next year.