Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced the appointment of 14 members to the National Dairy Promotion and Research Board. Thirteen appointees will serve 3-year terms and one will serve a 2-year term.

"These appointees represent a cross section of the dairy industry and I am confident that the industry will be well served by them" said Secretary Vilsack.

Newly appointed members are: Carol L. Ahlem, Hilmar, Calif. (Region 2); Christopher J. Brazil, Escalon, Calif. (Region 2); Brian O. Medeiros, Hanford, Calif. (Region 2); Lisa Vander Eyk, Pixley, Calif. (Region 2); Eddie S. Schaap, Clovis, N.M. (Region 4); Sarah E. Lloyd, Wisconsin Dells, Wis. (Region 6); Cheryl L. Chapin, Remus, Mich. (Region 9); and Joseph M. Kelsay (term ending on October 31, 2015), Whiteland, Ind. (Region 9).

Reappointed to serve second terms were: Renae A. De Jager, Chowchilla, Calif. (Region 2); Jeffrey A. Hardy, Brigham City, Utah (Region 3); Zachary H. Myers, Jonesville, N.C. (Region 10); David P. Crowl, Forest Hill, Md. (Region 11); Sanford Stauffer, Nicholville, N. Y. (Region 12); and Susan M. Troy, Wilmette, Ill. (Importer).

The Dairy Board was established under the Dairy Production Stabilization Act of 1983, as amended, to develop and administer a coordinated program of promotion, research, and nutrition education. The 38-member Dairy Board is authorized to design programs to strengthen the dairy industry's position in domestic and foreign markets. The program is financed by a mandatory assessment on all milk marketed commercially and an assessment on milk and dairy products imported into the United States.

The Secretary selected the appointees from nominations submitted by eligible producer organizations, general farm organizations, and qualified dairy products promotion, research or nutrition education programs. USDA's Agricultural Marketing Service monitors the operation of the Dairy Board.

Research and promotion programs are industry-funded, authorized by Congress, and date back to 1966, when Congress passed the Cotton Research and Promotion Act. Since then, Congress has authorized the establishment of 20 research and promotion boards. They empower farmers and ranchers to leverage their own resources to develop new markets, strengthen existing markets, and conduct important research and promotion activities. AMS provides oversight, paid for by industry assessments, which ensures fiscal responsibility, program efficiency and fair treatment of participating stakeholders.

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