The 22nd Annual Accelerated Genetics Intercollegiate Dairy Cattle Judging Contest was held September 20, 2015 in Viroqua, Wis., with the University of Wisconsin-Madison taking top honors in both reasons and overall. The University of Wisconsin-Madison team was coached by Chad Wethal and Brian Kelroy. Team members Kristen Broege, Abigail Martin, Megan Lauber and Sara Griswold took home the coveted Brown Swiss Canton III Traveling Trophy for winning the contest.
Placing second overall was the University of Wisconsin-River Falls coached by Steve Kelm and Mary Holle. Team members included: Charlie Moore, Tim Abrahamson, Trent Miller and Meghan Connelly.
The top overall individual award went to Kristen Broege from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. The other top individuals included (listed in order from 2nd-5th): Logan Voigts, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Meghan Connelly, University of Wisconsin-River Falls; Jessica Pralle, University of Wisconsin-Madison; and Lars Sivesind, Iowa State University.
In the oral reasons individual competition, the top three receive a special scholarship from the James W. Crowley Fund. This years top three individuals were: Kristen Broege, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Meghan Connelly, University of Wisconsin-River Falls, and Abigail Martin, University of Wisconsin-Madison.
A total of 12 teams participated in this year’s contest representing the states of Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, and Wisconsin. They judged the following dairy breeds Guernsey, Holstein, Jersey and Milking Shorthorn with each participant placing 10 classes and giving five sets of oral reasons.
A key part of the judging contest are the youth that serve as leadspeople. Each year, Vernon County youth assist with the contest by leading the cattle – this year 25 youth participated. Showmanship awards are then given to the youth based on their skills exhibiting the cattle and sportsmanship.
In the Junior Showmanship Division Karly Anderson placed first, Grant Fremstad placed second and Gabe Engh placed third. Placing first in the Senior Showmanship Division was Krista Hall, second place Courtney Moser and third was David Petersheim. And the Overall Showmanship Winner was Leif Thompson, who received the David Larson Memorial Showmanship Award – a special award in memory of David Larson, who worked very closely with the Vernon County youth and the judging contest.
This contest would not be possible without the tremendous support of the numerous contest and award sponsors. They include: American Guernsey Association, American Jersey Cattle Association, American Milking Shorthorn Society, Boehringer-Ingelheim, Chart Industries, Inc., Church of Christ, Connie Schmelzer, Hampel Corporation, Holstein Associaiton USA, James W. Crowley Fund, Merial, Ltd., Milk Products, Inc., Pioneer Hi-Bred International, Sci-Tech Premixes, Inc., Supreme Awards, Swiss Valley Farms, Co., The Baraboo National Bank, The Bank of Viroqua, Vernon County Agricultural Society, Vernon County Junior and Open Show Exhibitors, Wisconsin Brown Swiss Canton III – Jane of Vernon, and Zoetis,.