Sometimes it’s hard to imagine how a major livestock event such as the All-American Dairy Show (AADS) runs smoothly from start to finish. Clearly, it’s the dedicated people behind the scenes who commit their experience, time and energy to ensure a rewarding experience for all.
Jean Kummer, of American Dairy Association North East, presided over the awards portion of the exhibitor’s banquet. She welcomed Ryan Haines, chair of the All-American Dairy Foundation, to present the Arthur Nesbitt and All-American Dairy Foundation Scholarship award. This scholarship is awarded to a dairy youth who excels in participation in the All-American show as well as youth achievement and knowledge of the dairy industry.
Although all five scholarship candidates were highly qualified, Daniel Kitchen was the judges’ choice. “He has participated in each of the last nine years at the AADS, competing in the fitting and showmanship contest, junior breed shows, 4-H dairy judging contest and won the national Judi Collinsworth award for outstanding junior Holstein exhibitor,” said Haines.
In 2017, Kitchen won the All-American youth fitting and showmanship contest. Kitchen is currently a junior at Penn State University, majoring in animal science with a business management option, and plans to pursue a career in dairy nutrition and genetics prior to returning to the home farm.
The Image Award is tied directly to how the dairy industry presents itself to the public. “When I think of the Image Award for the All-American, a few words come to mind: dedication, support and leadership,” said AADS board member Allen Hess as he presented the award to Dr. Alan McCauley. “This year’s recipient has excelled in all of these. He has been involved with the All-American show for more than 10 years. He’s been involved in various aspects including ultrasound ethics as well as his current role as president of the board of directors.
McCauley says he didn’t get to where he is without the help of others in the industry. He credits several mentors for success early in his career, including the Lant family of Horseheads, NY who took him under their wing in 1969 when he graduated from vet school. “They really got me interested in cows and taught me many things,” he said. “My son Tom, who we called ‘Moss’ also learned a lot there. I remember old Fred (Lant) told him ‘one thing about showing is no one ever remembers who was second. That gave Moss the incentive to be first.”
McCauley also mentioned Dr. Francis Fox, who was McCauley’s mentor at Cornell. McCauley thanked the board for their hard work, and commented on the thousands of volunteer hours invested in making the AADS work. He also noted that Barb Ziemba, last year’s Image Award winner, has taken fund-raising for the AADS to a new level, and that Ziemba has raised more money this year than last.
“I think you need to be thankful for what you’ve got, and be careful not to bite the hand that feeds you,” said McCauley. “I thank the (Pennsylvania) Department of Agriculture with all my sincerity for what they do to make this show happen. That means Secretary Russell Redding, farm show management, and Harrison Franz, the show manager, who came into this position a few years ago. He had to start cold — he didn’t have one word or one sheet of paper to guide him. He came through the door and put this thing together when it needed some work.”
In closing, McCauley urged exhibitors to keep discarded bedding clean and free from trash so the AADS can profit by selling the used bedding rather than paying to have it removed.
Prior to presenting the Obie Snyder award to Elsie Wolff, Kevin Stolzfus praised Wolff’s hard work and her willingness to provide guidance to all exhibitors. Wolff started exhibiting at the All-American show 48 years ago, and has served as the Guernsey breed representative since 1988. She has been a strong advocate for the Guernsey breed, and has contributed to show promotion, recruitment and fundraising. Wolff met her husband Scott at the show, and they established a Guernsey herd under the Hollow View prefix. She continues to exhibit cattle with the Stolzfus family of Warwick Manor Farm.