Premier Select Sires awarded a total of $20,000 to 20 college students through the 2021 Premier Future Ag Leaders Scholarship Program. Two students received $2,500 scholarships through the Johnny Daniel Memorial Scholarship and the Wayne Dudley Scholarship. Eighteen other students received scholarships of $750 to $1,000 in value.
Hannah Braun of Woodcrest Dairy, a 4,900-cow operation in Lisbon, N.Y., is the daughter of Peter and Michelle Braun. Hannah received the Wayne Dudley Scholarship. She is a student at Cornell University studying Animal Science, and after graduating would like to attend veterinary school and obtain her DVM. As a veterinarian, Hannah would promote animal and herd health, both caring for individual animals and benefiting the future of entire herds by advising farmers to focus on breeding for a balance of production and health traits. Through this, she hopes to help individual farms and the dairy industry as a whole.
Grant Fincham of Fincham Dairy, a 200-cow operation in Marysville, Kan., is the son of Mike and Kathleen Fincham. Grant received the Johnny Daniel Memorial Scholarship. He is a student at Kansas State University studying Animal Science with a focus on nutrition. Grant hopes to obtain his Master’s degree in Ruminant Nutrition and possibly his Ph.D. so that he can help producers achieve maximum production potential through nutrition, and positively impact the dairy industry as it feeds the world in a sustainable manner.
Ryan Allen of Glen-Toctin Farm, a 120-cow Holstein operation in Jefferson, Md., is the son of Michael and Johanna Allen. Ryan is a student at Penn State University studying Animal Science. After graduation, Ryan plans to translate his interests in genetics and progressive management into a career at a genetics company or as a herd manager while remaining active in the family’s business.
William Coltrane of Coltrane Dairy LLC, a 600-cow operation in Pleasant Garden, N.C., is the son of David and Amy Coltrane. William is a student at the University of Mount Olive studying Agriculture Business. His goal is to earn his Bachelor’s degree and return to the family’s fourth-generation farm. He hopes to play a role in helping farmers gain the respect they deserve for their dedication and work ethic.
Hannah Diehl of Musser Run Jerseys, a 200-cow operation in McVeytown, Pa., is the daughter of Joseph and Kristin Diehl. Hannah is a student at Penn State University studying Animal Science. She hopes to work in the dairy industry after graduation, perhaps with the American Jersey Cattle Association, and then eventually return to her home farm. If returning to the farm, she would like to open a creamery to sell ice cream, cheese, and milk while educating local consumers of the importance of dairy in their diets.
Brooklin Drake of Drake Farms, a 335-cow dairy operation in Marathon, N.Y., is the daughter of Richard and Susan Drake. Brooklin is a senior at Marathon High School, and she plans to attend SUNY Cobleskill and study Agribusiness with a minor in Agriculture Education. She hopes to finish her education at Virginia Tech. When she’s done with school, Brooklin wants to have her own business running a corn maze and selling pumpkins in the fall, selling ice cream in the summer, and selling flowers in the spring, all while teaching middle school students about agriculture.
Allen Graulich of Argus Acres, a 500-cow Holstein operation in Cobleskill, N.Y., is the son of David and Suzanne Graulich. Allen is a student at Cornell University studying Animal Science with a dairy concentration. Upon graduation he plans to obtain a position at a farm other than his own so he can learn new techniques from a different perspective. After a few years away from the home farm, he plans to return and bring his newly acquired skills and ideas to improve and grow the herd in an efficient, economical, and environmentally friendly manner while maintaining high standards for milk quality.
Laurel Gray of Grayhouse Farms, a 1,975-cow operation in Stony Point, N.C., is the daughter of Andy and Amy Gray. Laurel is a senior at North Iredell High School and plans to attend North Carolina State University for Agriculture Business. After college she would like to return to the family dairy farm. She foresees herself helping with the financial aspects of the farm, working with the calves, helping with fieldwork, and helping to expand her family’s hunting business.
Rachel Gray of Grayhouse Farms, a 1,975-cow operation in Stony Point, N.C., is the daughter of Andy and Amy Gray. Rachel is a student at the University of Mount Olive studying Agribusiness. After graduating, she plans to return to the family farm and likely become the heifer manager of the operation, help with fieldwork, and use her position to provide for consumers while teaching them about the agriculture industry.
Lance Johnson of Tineal Dairy Farm, a 165-cow operation in Statesville, N.C., is the son of Neal and Tina Johnson. Lance is a student at North Carolina State University studying Agricultural Science. After college, he plans to return home and work in production agriculture, either owning his own dairy or managing a larger sized dairy and helping with reproduction, nutrition, health, record keeping, and crop production. Another option for Lance is to work at an agricultural business involved with livestock nutrition, reproduction, or health.
Gregory Norris of Runnymede Farm, a 40-cow dairy operation in Westhampton, Mass., is the son of Karl and Lisa Norris. Gregory is a student at Penn State University studying Animal Science. After college, he plans to work as a Precision Ag Specialist for Helena Agri-Enterprises. Gregory will be interning with Helena this summer, and has developed a passion for helping farmers improve the profitability of their operations by using all of the technological advances that are available to the industry today.
Charles Patterson of Patterson Farms Inc., a 300-cow Holstein operation in Chestertown, Md., is the son of Charles and Sherry Patterson. He is a student at Purdue University studying Agriculture Systems Management. After graduation, he plans to return to his family’s dairy farm and use what he learned in college to improve the farm.
Alexis Payne of Maple Downs Farms II, a 150-cow Holstein operation in Middleburgh, N.Y., is the daughter of William and Melissa Payne and Angela Stickles. Alexis is a student at SUNY Cobleskill studying Animal Science – Dairy. After college, she hopes to pursue an off-farm job in sales or promotion for experience, while still remaining on the farm.
Gavin Rankins of Darlin Farms, a 145-cow operation in Cusseta, Ala., is the son of Linda and Darrell Rankins, Jr. Gavin is a student at Auburn University studying Animal Sciences – Animal/Allied Industries. After graduation, he plans to return to his family’s diversified farm and work in partnership with his father and younger brother. He plans to maintain a high level of diversification on the farm while increasing efficiency and production. He is excited to be part of an industry that feeds a hungry world.
Charles Rosson of Quaker Hill Farm, an 800-head registered Angus, Red Angus, Simmental, Charolais, and Shorthorn operation in Louisa, Va., is the son of Charles and Sherry Rosson. Charles is a student at Oklahoma State University studying Animal Science. After graduating, he plans to return to the farm and gradually take over the reins. His goals include expanding the operation and increasing the bull customer base and the rigid carcass testing program.
Elizabeth Rosson of Quaker Hill Farm, an 800-head registered Angus, Red Angus, Simmental, Charolais, and Shorthorn operation in Louisa, Va., is the daughter of Charles and Sherry Rosson. Elizabeth is a senior at Louisa County High School. She plans to attend Oklahoma State University to study Agriculture Communications and Animal Science. Her career goals include securing a position in the Agriculture Communications field that will also allow her the ability to remain involved with her family’s cattle operation. She hopes that her career will allow her to preserve and strengthen her family farm as well as rural America as a whole as she serves as a liaison between producers and consumers.
Courtney Schrader of Wil-O-Mar Farm, a 40-cow registered Holstein operation in Earleville, Md., is the daughter of Kerry and William Schrader, Jr. Courtney is a student at Salisbury University pursuing a double major in Management and Communications. After graduation she hopes to obtain a career within an agricultural company focused on banking, nutrition management, insurance, marketing, or animal health. She wants to use her position to help the agriculture industry thrive and flourish.
George Sebright of Farview Holsteins, a 60-cow operation in East Berlin, Pa., is the son of Robby and Jayne Sebright. George is a student at Virginia Tech studying Dairy Science. After graduating, he is considering two career paths. First, he is interested in operating or managing a large progressive dairy farm. Alternatively, he could also pursue a career in dairy cattle genetics. Regardless, George enjoys being around people and working with cattle and looks forward to doing both in his future career in agriculture.
Kyle Vanderfeltz of Vanderfeltz Dairy, a 400-cow Holstein and Jersey operation in Lawton, Pa., is the son of Joseph and Melinda Vanderfeltz. Kyle is a student at SUNY Cobleskill studying Ag Engine Power and Machinery. After graduation he plans to return to his family’s dairy farm. He enjoys milking cows and doing fieldwork, and with his degree he will be able to do most of the maintenance and repairs to the farm equipment to save money and help the farm reach its goals.
Bryce Windecker of Windex Farm, a 190-cow Holstein operation in Schuyler, N.Y., is the son of Dale and Deborah Windecker. Bryce is a student at Cornell University studying Animal Science. Upon graduation, Bryce plans to seek a job in farm finance or genetics so he can consult and work with farmers to help them prosper. He feels that connecting with business owners on a personal level is the key to helping them thrive. Bryce would also like to operate a small-scale dairy of his own at home.
The Premier Future Ag Leaders Scholarship Program provides financial support to eligible students pursuing agricultural education, and also provides additional return to the cooperative’s member-owners by supporting the next generation of young people desiring to study and work in the agriculture industry. The Premier Select Sires board of directors has made a commitment to providing money to support this scholarship program on an ongoing annual basis.
Premier Select Sires is a farmer-owned cooperative that serves beef and dairy producers in its 23-state member area. Dedicated to providing its members with all they need to achieve success, Premier provides:
- Industry-leading genetics from the Select Sires, Accelerated Genetics, and GenerVations brands
- Effective herd health and management products, as well as artificial insemination supplies
- Reliable services and programs backed by years of success
- Knowledgeable industry experts who are easily accessed for consultation, advice, and on-farm assistance
Together with its five sister cooperatives across the United States, Premier owns and controls Select Sires Inc., the world’s most recognized name in bovine genetics.