Carl Rasch of Morrice, Michigan, was recently selected as this year’s recipient of the Michigan Dairy Industry Service Award at the 69th Annual Michigan Dairy Industry Conference (MDIC) held June 1 in Lansing, Michigan. As Michigan Milk Producers Association (MMPA) Director of Milk Sales, Rasch was nominated by his coworkers for his dedication to the industry and strong leadership over the last four decades.
“Carl’s passion and commitment to the dairy industry is well known by all of us. I can’t think of a more deserving honoree of the Michigan Dairy Industry Service Award,” said Joe Diglio, general manager of MMPA and long-time colleague of Rasch. “His willingness to educate, train and mentor many of us in the industry has been instrumental and beneficial to the past, current and future leaders of dairy.”
Leading the milk sales team for the last 40 years, Rasch has seen the co-op go from local customer base to an international scale. By being “direct and bold,” according to past and present MMPA leaders, Rasch has been able to build relationships with customers in and outside of Michigan, capitalizing on opportunities to move milk to a variety of outlets. While working on business development and strategic planning for MMPA, Rasch is responsible for negotiating contracts with processing plant customers and milk supplying members.
Rasch currently serves on the Michigan Dairy Memorial and Scholarship Foundation Board. In the past, he has also served on the board of directors for the United Dairy Industry of Michigan, as the secretary of the Great Lakes Southern Milk Marketing Agency, and has worked on taskforces with the National Milk Producers Federation concerning Federal Order reform. At the MMPA’s annual meeting in March, the cooperative recognized Rasch as an honoree of the Michigan Dairy Memorial and Scholarship Foundation with a $1,000 contribution to the scholarship foundation in his name.
Rasch graduated from Michigan State University with a Bachelor of Science degree. His career began by working as a field auditor at USDA before being hired by MMPA in 1977.
“Having been born and raised on a dairy farm, I am fortunate to work on behalf of members who are family, neighbors and friends,” Rasch said. “It’s been a privilege to work for an organization like MMPA who is recognized as a leader in the industry.”
Rasch resides in Morrice, Michigan, with his wife, Roxanne. They have five children: Jessica, Anthony, Michael, Carol Ann, and Katie.
The Michigan Dairy Industry Conference focusses on discussing current issues, technology, economic outlook, techniques and legislation affecting dairy farmers, shippers, processors and consumers.
MMPA is a member-owned and operated milk marketing cooperative and dairy processor serving approximately 2,000 dairy farmers throughout Michigan, Wisconsin, Ohio and Indiana.