Salem, Ore. – (April 2, 2019) – The Oregon Dairy Farmers Association presented awards during their Annual Convention on March 4-5 to honor contributions made to Oregon’s Dairy Industry. During the Awards Luncheon, ODFA presented awards to recognize very deserving recipients for their contributions to Oregon’s dairy industry. Tom Johnson was honored with the Community Service Award and Will Wise and Julie Hoffman with the Oregon Beef Council received the Distinguished Service Award.
Tom Johnson is a native Oregonian, born in North Bend and raised on the dairy that had been in the family for all but eight years since 1904. With his brother, Al, he jointly took the reins of the family dairy. As the farm gained its footing, Tom recognized the need to be involved, and the need for the dairy industry to collaborate. With that, he joined the board of the Oregon Dairy Products Commission, where he later served as chairman. In that role, he guided the organization through some challenging times, but always with a respectful firmness, and a collaborative spirit. His guidance helped create a new direction for the Commission’s initiatives, which are still in effect today.
He later leveraged those skills when he joined the Oregon Dairy Farmers Association (ODFA) board, also serving as chairman. Tom is part of a small group of Oregon dairy producers that have served as board chair for both the Products Commission and ODFA. Under his watch, he helped lead a funding increase for ODFA, ushered in the Dairy Leadership Program, and helped initiate Dairy Day at the Capitol. Through all his board commitments, he kept meetings efficient, but lively. He kept discussions on point, and he thought of the whole industry, farms large and small, organic and conventional.
The advice Tom would give to someone entering the dairy business is, “Be sure to get involved. You’ll get way more benefit than you can believe, help make the industry better, and you will make some lifelong friends.”
The Oregon Beef Council (OBC) represents beef producers across the state and promotes beef on behalf of Oregon’s farmers and ranchers through promotion, research and educational activities. Their board is organized by state statute with two positions for dairy producers, one from Eastern Oregon and one from Western Oregon. Currently John Seymour from Cloverdale and Amy Applegate from Vale represent the dairy industry on the OBC. Previous dairy representatives include Buzz Gibson, Jason Chamberlain, Jerome Rosa, John Rohner, Ralph Duyck and Warren Chamberlain.
ODFA greatly appreciates the collaborations that Will Wise has built through the years. Will has a master’s degree in Ag Economics from OSU and previously served as a National Trade Director for USDA. Will has served as the CEO of the Oregon Beef Council for nearly 10 years. Will developed international trade policy and marketing programs, domestic marketing programs, university research projects and other strategic activities that have benefited both the beef and dairy industries. Will has also created state and national partnership for marketing programs in Japan and Peru.
Will is half of the successful equation at the Oregon Beef Council. Julie Hoffman is critical to their effectiveness and together they are a strong team. Julie knows where every penny has gone and how it was used. Julie volunteers many of her weekends for activities with the Oregon Cattlewomen, at OSU and U of O Football Beef Tailgater of the Game to recognize a family at each game that is cooking beef. Julie also volunteers with Ag Fest.
Jason Chamberlain, immediate Past President of the Beef Council and a dairy producer from Vale, said “dairymen need to know the Oregon Beef Council is a strong partner and an important alliance. If the Beef Council can help support the Oregon dairy farmers, you can be guaranteed they will be 110% behind it.”
Congratulations to award recipients Tom Johnson, and Will Wise and Julie Hoffman with the Oregon Beef Council for your years of service and support of the Oregon dairy industry.
About Oregon Dairy Farmers Association The Oregon Dairy Farmers Association, established in 1892, works on behalf of Oregon's 210 dairy farm families. Milk is the official state beverage of Oregon, and Oregon is recognized nationwide as a leader for milk quality. The Oregon dairy industry contributes more than $1 billion to Oregon's economy each year. Oregon dairy producers care about their cows, their communities, and the land, air and water of our state.