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Senior Awards
Ralph Gushee Memorial Caretaker Award

This award recognizes a person who exhibits passion towards care of dairy cattle, the people involved, and the dairy industry as a whole.  This is a unique opportunity to give thanks to those who excel in animal and farm care and who may not always find themselves in the limelight.  In the spirit of it’s namesake, this award is intended to recognize those persons whose tireless efforts, many times behind the scenes, make great accomplishments posible.  Maybe it’s making sure calves are raised just right at home, or that fancy, but flighty heifer is fully housebroken, or feeding just one more cart of hay the day before the show, that collection of little things that enables other big things to happen.  The winner will be selected by the New England Holstein Breed Promotion Committee and recognized at the New England Holstein Convention in the fall of each year.Nominations may be emailed to or mailed to the address above.  The deadline for nominations is October 1.  

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Joanne Hill was honored with New England's Ralph Gushee Memorial Caretaker Award at the 2022 New England Convention. The award, presented by Betsy Bullard, was accepted by Ron Hill.  Joanne manages the day-to-day care of all the calves born on Four-Hills Farm.  She’s often the first person a newborn calf sees, and she makes sure they get everything they need to be successful on the farm.  Joanne spends her days managing the seven robotic calf feeders each with about 30 calves on it, backgrounding anywhere from 12-35 newborn bottle calves.  In addition to her normal calf care, she also cares for the weaned calves.  While Joanne spends most of her time with the calves, she’s also a big part of the crew who “holds down the fort” during crop and show seasons.  She makes sure that the tasks continue to get done and is always willing to give the crop crew rides when needed or drop off equipment for them.  Joanne often knows more about what is going on around the farm than anyone else.  She uses her “says off” to go watch the show crew and is always close by to grab a halter or anything else that may be needed.  There is not a chance the farm could manage without her.

Master Breeder / Distinguished Service (alternating years)
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2022 New England Convention, Vermont     The Master Breeder Award recognizes a person who has achieved significant success in breeding Holstein cows. 

Tim and Sharyn Abbott of  Enosburg, Vermont are synonymous with success, having built and sold St. Jacobs ABC, started their prefix and farm Borderview Genetics, and managing some of the most prestigious sales in the industry.  Their prefixes and partnerships have ranked up numerous All-American and All-Canadians, with most recently attaining the coveted Supreme Champion at World Dairy Expo in 2022 and 2018.  Their time at St. Jacobs really changed the landscape for bull studs marketing to breeders emphasizing cow families and breeding establishments as the differentiation from larger studs.  Their successes at St. Jacobs led to eventually selling to ABS Global and propelling them to buy a farm in northern Vermont to house, raise and breed from their own prefix, Borderview Genetics.  Their work in sale management has been important in helping breeders carry out great sales that honor their cow families and the people behind them and will cement the Abbott name in the history books of dairy cattle marketing.

Please send in your nominations for the 2023 New England Distinguished Service and the 2023 Ralph Gushee Memorial Caretaker awards.  Nominations are due in the New England office by October 1, 2023.  Link to list of previous award winners.
The form fillable pdfs are here:  New England Distinguished Service Award   
Ralph Gushee Memorial Caretaker

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