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Wisconsin Leaders to Earn Top World Dairy Expo Honors
Wisconsin Ag Connection - 09/22/2022

Some of the top honorees for World Dairy Expo's 2022 annual recognition awards will hail from America's Dairyland. The dairy show announced that John Ruedinger of Van Dyne will be honored as Dairy Producer of the Year this fall, with Shelly Mayer, Slinger, earning the distinction of Industry Person of the Year.

Ruedinger has served in leadership roles that placed him in the room during the creation of Cooperative Resources International and URUS. On the farm, he and his wife, Karen, and daughter and son-in-law, Jamie and David Zappa, operate Ruedinger Farms, Inc., which is a 1,500-cow dairy with an average production of 90 pounds of milk and 6.75 pounds of solids per cow per day.

Mayer is the executive director of Professional Dairy Producers of Wisconsin, where she has been on the leading edge of animal welfare, defining the founding parts of what is now the FARM program, maintaining customers' confidence in the dairy industry, and providing producers with resources to proactively manage challenges. In 2018, she helped lead the team responsible for the creation of the $7.8 million Dairy Innovation Hub, a research institution in Wisconsin focused on cutting-edge dairy research. Mayer and her family also operate Mayer Farm, Folks Song Farm and Mayer Farms Beef.

Meanwhile, this year's International Person of the Year is Mark Comfort of Ontario, Canada, who is the co-founder of Udder Comfort.

The three recipients will be honored during World Dairy Expo at a special banquet held on October 5.

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