Wisconsin Jaycees Outstanding Young Farmer Awards Weekend was hosted by the Shawano County OYF and Friends of Agriculture Jan. 11-12. Mike Austin, farm broadcaster from Green Bay, emceed the awards weekend. Following are the results:
Winners: Ron and Nicolle Wussow, Cecil, who operate a 434-acre dairy farm milking Holsteins and award-winning Jerseys. They also have a custom harvesting business. Wussows have two children, Kayla and Colin. Sponsored by Shawano County OYF.
The 2008 Wisconsin Jaycees Outstanding Young Farmers are from left, front row, Chad Neeser, 1st runner-up; Mark Parker, 2nd runner-up; Keith Niemann, 3rd runner-up; Ron Wussow, winner and Wade Shaw, 4th runner up. Back row: Rachel Parker, Fay Neimann, Nicolle Wussow and Diane Shaw.
1st Runner-up: Chad Neeser, Rice Lake, who operates a 761-acre dairy and cash crop farm. He also raises heifers and steers. He has one son, Matthew. Sponsored by Barron County Ag Promoters.
2nd Runners-up: Mark and Rachel Parker, Viola, milk 40 cows and operate a 365-acre dairy farm. They also raise feeder pigs on their certified organic farm. They have three children: Zane, Jocelyn, and Seth. Sponsored by Richland Area Jaycees/Richland County OYF Organization.
3rd Runners-up: Keith and Fay Niemann, Edgar, who operate a custom feed lot and beef cow-calf operation. They farm 1345 acres. They have two children, Charles and Kolton.
4th Runners-up: Wade and Diane Shaw, Baraboo, who manage a 2,100 acre cash grain operation and raise 240 crossbred hogs. They have one daughter, Amanda. Sponsored by Reedsburg Jaycees.
Judges were Mary Jane Hermann, Greenleaf, OYF state winner with in 1977; Jeff Polenske, Agronomic Consultant from Appleton; and Alan Voskuil, Manitowoc, Investors Community Bank vice president.
A "Speak up for Agriculture" training session was led by Shelly Mayer of Professional Dairy Producers of Wisconsin. Candidates toured Genex Cooperative, Ag-Ventures, Betley Farms, The Lark Country Store, The Wood Shed and Antlers Supper Club.
Wisconsin OYF 2008 Key sponsors are: CHS, Genex Cooperative, Mid County Cooperative, Professional Dairy Producers of Wisconsin; Accelerated Genetics, Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board, Wisconsin Public Service, Investors Community Bank and Kuhn Knight Inc. In addition, 15 major sponsors and many local sponsors contributed.
This was Wisconsin's 55th OYF Awards Weekend.
Jeff and Jena Betley, Pulaski, 2007 OYF winners, will represent Wisconsin at the National OYF 52nd Awards Congress, Jan. 31-Feb 2 in Madison.