2015 CONFERENCE SPEAKERS 

Western Organic Dairy Producers Alliance
























Mr. Tom Willey: Tom Willey and his wife, Denesse, have operated T&D Willey Farms, a seventy five acre farm in Madera, California since 1981.  Certified Organic by CCOF since 1987 they grow a wide array of Mediterranean vegetables. Tom is a passionate advocate for local food prominence.  Currently, he is working closely with a number of organizations urging Whole Foods to modify its proprietary produce rating system which devalues the USDA Certified Organic Seal.









Mr. Cheyenne Christianson: Cheyenne and Katy Christianson run a 70-cow organic dairy using intensive rotational grazing.  They have fed no grain for 16 years and focus on quality forage and pasture to meet the needs of the animals. Annuals such as oats, turnips, Japanese millet, sorghum sudan, rye, and triticale are used to fill in and extend the grazing season. The Christiansons bought a run down farm in July of 1993 and started grazing in 1994. Improving soil fertility has been a work in progress, and is a vital component of growing quality forage and maximizing production in dry times. Northern WI suffered sever drought for several years which led to more focus on ways to manage the farm with less rain. He also writes articles for Graze Magazine and shares what works on his farm to all that are interested.


Drs. Pat and Paul Frishkoff:  Pat and Paul were both raised  in business-owning families, taught decades at public universities, and offer practical advice.  Pat launched the Austin Family Business Program  at Oregon State University, which will celebrate  30 years this fall. She also held the A. E.  Coleman Chair in Family Business. Paul was Professor of Accounting in the Lundquist College of Business at the University of Oregon. He just published "Dr. Chuckle and Missed Her Ride." Their tag-team presentations are interactive, informative  and humorous. 
You will take away key questions and suggestions for approaching them in your business. They will alert you to snags and offer secrets for success.
They bring decades of instruction at their respective universities, plus experience from lecturing across the U. S. and abroad. They also work privately  with families in their practice, Leadership In Family Enterprise, LLC, based in Eugene Oregon. Pat's background  and family-business focus is agriculture.
Pat leads with systems development,  specifics of planning, and asking the hard questions. Paul weaves in career assessment, communication skills, and a wicked sense of humor. 
This is a session that you won't want to miss. Bring your whole family contingent.


Mr.Troy Downing: Troy Downing has worked for 25 years for Oregon State University and is a professor in Animal Science.  Early in his career he worked on campus managing the university dairy, conducting research and teaching. The past eighteen years he has worked as a dairy extension agent conducting applied research and teaching with the commercial dairy industry in Oregon. 
His extension programs have primarily focused on waste management and forages. He has also spent considerable time conducting applied research that he uses as the basis of his educational programs.  Projects have included developing systems to monitor nutrient cycling on farms, animal waste management planning, pasture variety trails looking at soluble and structural carbohydrate digestibility and management of dairy grazing systems. 
 



​​Dr. Cyndi Daley: Dr. Daley is the program director for the Organic Dairy Teaching and Research Facility at California State University Chico. The program is focused on building knowledge and skills in organic dairy production through hands-on learning and applied research. The College also supports the program with the first Organic Dairy Production & Management course to be offered on a University campus.  Dr. Daley provides technical and research support to a variety of sustainable livestock practices through her work to establish the nutritional benefits of pasture-based systems on lipid and antioxidant profiles in grass-fed meats and milk products.  Her research, supported by the a Western Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education fund, was recently published in the Nutrition Journal and continues to provide justification for “value added” nutritional labeling for farmer direct marketing of grass-fed products. In addition to the lipid research, Cyndi has been working to develop sustainable feeding strategies by enhancing forage quality through soil amendments. She recently completed research on the effects of fodder feeding on rumen function. When she's not teaching class's, or doing research related activities, she’s writing, or providing support to the on-line educational database eOrganic (www.eorganic.info). eOrganic is where much of the most relevant work in organic dairy production is supported.