Eight individuals have been nominated to serve in leadership positions of the national Jersey organizations―seven for the American Jersey Cattle Association and one for the National All-Jersey Inc. Board of Directors. Results of the elections will be announced during the virtual meetings of the associations the last weekend of June.
Ballots will be mailed to active members on Friday, May 22. Electronic voting will open on May 27, 2020, at 8:00 a.m., and close on June 26, 2020, at noon (Eastern Daylight Time).
Jonathan Merriam, Hickman, Calif., has been nominated for President of the American Jersey Cattle Association (AJCA). He currently is serving his second term as AJCA president.
Merriam grew up on the family dairy farm in Hickman and now works as the genetics specialist at Ahlem Farms Partnership in Hilmar, Calif. The 7,000-cow dairy owned by Carolyn Ahlem, Sabino Ahlem-Herrera and Roger Herrera milks cows on three dairies using several AJCA programs, including REAP and JerseyMate, and JerseyTags for permanent identification. Ahlem Farms Partnership is a charter investor in Project Equity and a contract advertiser with the Jersey Journal. The dairy is also a founder of Hilmar Cheese Company. All three herds have lactation averages over 19,600 lbs. milk and herd average JPIs over +22. The home dairy ranks #16 in the nation for genetic merit with a herd average JPI of +38 on 3,305 cows.
Jonathan was general chair for the 2019 All American and sits on the board of Jerseyland Sires. He was chair of the 2017 All American Jersey Sale and co-chair of the 2016 National Heifer Sale held in San Diego, Calif.
AJCA Director Nominee – Second District
Rebecca “Becky” Ferry, Johnstown, N.Y., has been nominated to serve as Director from the Second District of the American Jersey Cattle Association (AJCA).
Becky owns and operates Dreamroad Jerseys LLC with her sister, Sandra Scott, in Johnstown. The two earned the AJCA Young Jersey Breeder award in 2009 and assumed ownership of the 300-acre farm in 2016 from their parents, who purchased it in 1990. Dreamroad Jerseys was a tour stop during the AJCA-National All-Jersey Inc. Annual Meetings in 2019.
The 80-cow herd is enrolled on REAP. It has a 2019 lactation average (m.e.) of 17,530 lbs. milk 896 lbs. fat and 669 lbs. protein. With the December 2019 herd appraisal, the herd includes 23 Excellent and 50 Very Good cows and has a herd average of 86.7%. Dreamroad Jerseys is a contract advertiser in the Jersey Journal.
AJCA Director Nominee – Second District
Gary B. Moore
Gary B. Moore, Greenwich, N.Y., has been nominated to serve as Director from the Second District of the American Jersey Cattle Association (AJCA).
Moore has been breeding Registered Jerseys for more than four decades. Today he owns and operates DGM Jerseys with his wife, Debbie, in Greenwich, near the Vermont border.
As well, Gary has worked for Cargill Animal Nutrition for the past 31 years, the last 15 as a calf and heifer specialist. The Moores have continued to farm and milk cows to enable his son and daughter-in-law, Doug and Janelle, and their children to dairy.
The Moores milk a mixed-breed herd (Jerseys and Holsteins) of 45 cows. The Jersey herd is enrolled on REAP and has a 2019 lactation average (m.e.) of 21,649 lbs. milk, 1,047 lbs. fat and 745 lbs. protein on nine cows. With the herd appraisal in December 2019, the herd includes four Excellent and 13 Very Good cows and has an appraisal average of 86.9%.
AJCA Director Nominee – Sixth District
Karen Bohnert, East Moline, Ill., has been nominated to serve as Director from the Sixth District of the American Jersey Cattle Association (AJCA). She was first elected to the position in 2017 and has served on the Finance and Development Committees.
Karen and her husband, Scott, and his brother, Brian, and their parents, Jim and Wanda, own and operate Bohnert Jerseys, a 500-cow Registered Jersey dairy in East Moline. The family also raises corn, soybeans and wheat on 1,300 acres. Bohnert Jerseys is enrolled on REAP and has a ranked nationally among similar-sized herds each of the past 10 years. The 2019 AJCA actual herd average of 18,135 lbs. milk, 933 lbs. fat and 674 lbs. protein ranks 10th for milk among herds with 300-749 cows. The dairy also ranks among the top 75 herds in the country for genetic merit with a herd average JPI of +22.
AJCA Director Nominee – Eighth District
Tim Klaustermeier, Glencoe, Minn., has been nominated to serve as Director from the Eighth District of the American Jersey Cattle Association (AJCA).
Tim established Prairie Harbour Jerseys in Glencoe in May 2000. He uses Jersey genetics from the U.S., Canada, Denmark, Australia and New Zealand in the breeding program, with a focus on improving longevity, fertility, health and pounds of protein.
Registered Jerseys have also been developed in partnership with the Chris Sukalski Family as Reiland Prairie and Robert Boltman of Harmony Corners as Harmony Harbour to capitalize on merchandising opportunities. The 37-cow Prairie Harbour herd and partnership animals are enrolled on REAP and milked at Reiland Farms in Leroy, Minn. The combined herds have an April 2020 rolling herd average of 21,360 lbs. milk, 1,078 lbs. fat and 759 lbs. protein on 46 cows. Reiland Prairie animals are included in the Stephanie, Joseph and Kenric Sukalski herd, which ranks seventh in the nation for actual milk production among herds with 10-39 cows, with a herd average of 20,447 lbs. milk, 995 lbs. fat and 712 lbs. protein on 26 cows.
AJCA Director Nominee- Eighth District
John Maxwell, Donahue, Iowa, has been nominated to serve as Director of the Eighth District of the American Jersey Cattle Association (AJCA).
Maxwell is a fifth-generation dairy farmer who owns and operates Cinnamon Ridge Dairy with his family in Scott County. The home farm on which he grew up was designated as a Century Farm in 2010.
Cinnamon Ridge Dairy is enrolled on REAP and a contract advertiser with the Jersey Journal. The 185-cow herd ranks first in the nation for milk, protein and cheese yield on an actual and m.e. basis with respective averages for 2019 of 23,710 lbs. milk, 1,119 lbs. fat, 899 lbs. protein and 3,002 lbs. cheese yield and 26,768 lbs. milk, 1,254 lbs. fat, 1,014 lbs. protein and 3,378 lbs. cheese yield. Four members of the milking string produced 305-day records ranked among the top 10 in the nation for milk, protein or cheese yield for 2019. The fully genotyped herd ranks among the top 25% in the nation for genetic merit with a herd average JPI of +16 (April 2020) on 256 cows.
AJCA Director Nominee – Eleventh District
Cornell Kasbergen, Tulare, Calif., has been nominated to serve as Director from the Eleventh District of the American Jersey Cattle Association (AJCA).
Kasbergen and his wife, Teri, and son and daughter-in-law, Case and Allison, own and operate Rancho Teresita Dairy in Tulare. Also known as Kash-In Jerseys, the dairy consists of 1,800 acres of farmland, 3,600 Jerseys and 1,400 Holsteins.
The herd is enrolled on REAP and has a 2019 lactation average (m.e.) of 21,283 lbs. milk, 1,061 lbs. fat and 815 lbs. protein on 1,836 cows. Actual production is 19,641 lbs. milk, 982 lbs. fat and 749 lbs. protein. With the April 2020 genetic evaluations, 30 heifers rank on the list of the Top 500 Females for GJPI. Rancho Teresita Dairy is home to 139 Excellent cows; most are homebred.
NAJ Director Nominee – District 5
James S. Huffard III
James S. Huffard III, Crockett, Va., has been nominated to serve as District 5 Director for National All-Jersey Inc. (NAJ). He is currently serving his fourth term as director and is also vice president of the organization.
As a partner with his son, Trey, and brother, John, in Huffard Dairy Farms, Jim has a wealth of experience in the Jersey business. After graduating in dairy science from Virginia Tech, he returned to the home farm and assumed the responsibilities for the livestock and general manager.
Jim and John bottle milk from the herd at Duchess Dairy in Rural Retreat. The dairy has been a Queen of Quality® producer since January 2010 and now distributes All-Jersey milk to grocery and convenience stores across southern Virginia, eastern Tennessee and West Virginia.
All active members shown on the membership books of the Association on the date 50 days prior to the Annual Meeting (May 8, 2020) are eligible to vote for AJCA President and Directors. Persons eligible to vote for NAJ Directors (by district) are producer members, those who pay fees as established by the Board of Directors, and honorary members shown on the membership records of the corporation 60 days prior to the the Annual Meeting (April 29, 2020).
To vote electronically, you must have a unique email on file with the AJCA.