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Outstanding Holstein breeders and dairy industry leaders are recognized each year with Holstein Association USA’s annual awards. These include the prestigious Distinguished Young Holstein Breeder, Distinguished Leadership, and Elite Breeder recognitions.

“A highlight of every National Holstein Convention is recognizing our deserving award recipients for their contributions to the Holstein breed, Holstein Association USA, and the greater dairy community,” says Holstein Association USA CEO John Meyer. “We look forward to continuing to add to the high-caliber list of award recipients and encourage you to nominate people you feel are deserving.”

Holstein enthusiasts are invited to submit nominations for the Elite Breeder and Distinguished Leadership awards. Applications for the Elite Breeder and Distinguished Leadership awards are considered for three years after initial submission. Current Holstein breeders between the ages of 21 and 40 are encouraged to apply for the Distinguished Young Holstein Breeder award.

About the Awards:

The Elite Breeder Award honors a living Holstein Association USA member, family, partnership, or corporation who has bred outstanding animals and thereby made a notable contribution to the advancement of U.S. Registered Holsteins.

The Distinguished Leadership Award is given to an individual who has provided outstanding and unselfish leadership that has contributed to the improvement of Holstein Association USA and/or the dairy industry.

The Distinguished Young Holstein Breeder Award recognizes significant accomplishments of young Registered Holstein® breeders ages 21 to 40. Submissions can be made for individuals, a couple, or business partners. The winning applicant will receive travel and lodging expenses (for up to two people) to National Holstein Convention, complimentary tickets to the Convention banquet, and a $2,000 cash award.

Award applications are available on the Holstein Association USA website at Nomination applications must be postmarked by January 31, 2024. Honorees will receive their recognition during the 2024 National Holstein Convention being held June 24-27, 2024, in Salt Lake City, Utah. More information about the 2024 National Holstein Convention can be found at

Additionally, a scholarship is available to students interested in agriculture who plan to pursue their master’s degree in business administration. The Robert H. Rumler MBA Scholarship awards $3,000 to a qualified individual pursuing their MBA at an accredited university. Applications for this scholarship must be received by April 15, 2024.

The previous award winners since 2007 are recognized below. Congratulations to these well-deserving recipients!

Previous Distinguished Young Holstein Breeder Award Winners

2023 - Ty Etgen, OH

2022 - Mitch Kappelman, WI

2021 - Mackenzie, Andy, Tyler, and Kelly Reynolds, NY

2020 - Kurt and Sarah Loehr, WI

2019 - Sheri Regan-Danhof, IA

2018 - David Harvatine, NY

2017 - Craig Carncross, WI

2016 - Joe Loehr, WI

2015 - Joel Mills, PA

2014 - Greg Andersen, ID

2013 - Chad & Amy Ryan, WI

2012 - Jonathan & Alicia Lamb, NY

2011 - Brad Groves, MO

2010 - Timothy Baker, MI

2009 - Jan & Jeff King, NY

2008 - Mark & Angie Ulness, WI

2007 - Bruce & Brenda Long, WI

Previous Distinguished Leadership Award Winners

2023 – Josh Marshman, NY

2022 - The Honorable Collin Peterson, MN

2021 - Dave Fischer, IL

2020 - Patricia Gifford, NY

2019 - George A. Miller, OH

2018 - William C. Nichol, PA

2017 - Jerry Strandlund, WA

2016 - Dick Witter, PA

2015 - M. Duane Green, MI

2014 - Marlowe Nelson, WI

2013 - Horace Backus, NY

2012 - Dr. Robert E. Walton, WI

2011 - Charles E. Iager, MD

2010 - Ida B. Ruby, OR

2009 - Dennis C. Wolff, PA

2008 - Richard T. Coyne, NY

2007 - William T. McKarns, OH

Previous Elite Breeder Award Winners

2023 – Bomaz Farms, WI

2022 - Sandy Valley Farms/Bauer Brothers, WI

2021 - Emerald Acres, WI

2020 - James and Nina Burdette, PA

2019 - David Bachmann Sr., WI

2018 - Tom and Gin Kestel, WI

2017 - Olmar Farms, MN

2016 - Harvue Farms - David Hardesty, VA

2015 - Conant Acres, ME

2014 - Robthom Holsteins, MO

2013 - Robert Miller, IL

2012 - Regancrest, IA

2011 - Frank Raymond Ruby, OR

2010 - Doug Maddox, CA

2009 - Robert J. Schauf, WI

2008 - Max "Kip" Herzog, CA

2007 - Marvin Nunes, CA

Previous Robert H. Rumler MBA Scholarship Recipients

2022 - Jacob Achen, MN

2021 - Trent Dado, WI

2018 - Tera Baker, MI

2017 - Kelly Driver, NY

2014 - Susie Chelesvig, IA

2010 - John Tauzel, NY

2008 - Kasey Osborn, NY

2007 - Nikolaus Sutter, WI

Holstein Association USA, Inc., provides programs, products and services to dairy producers to enhance genetics and improve profitability — including animal identification and ear tags, genomic testing, mating programs, dairy records processing, classification, communication, consulting services, and Holstein semen.

The Association, headquartered in Brattleboro, VT., represents approximately 25,000 members throughout the United States. To learn more about Registered Holsteins® and the other exciting programs offered by the Holstein Association, visit, and follow us on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.