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Program Faculty

Michael Boehlje

Dr. Michael D. Boehlje — Purdue University

Dr. Boehlje conducts research and teaches in the area of farm and agribusiness management and finance at Purdue University. His research interests include alternative systems of coordination of the food and industrial product chain, the industrialization of agriculture and alternative financial and organizational structures for farm and agribusiness firms.  Dr. Boehlje teaches an undergraduate course in agricultural finance, in the executive development programs of the Center for Agricultural Business as well as in schools and extension programs for farmers and lenders on finance and management topics.

Bernie Erven

Mr. Shannon Ferrell - Oklahoma State University and Ferrell Law Firm

Shannon Ferrell is a Professor in the Oklahoma State University Department of Agricultural Economics, where he specializes in Agricultural Law.  He grew up on a cattle and wheat operation in Western Oklahoma, and obtained his Bachelors and Masters degrees in Agricultural Economics from OSU before obtaining his Juris Doctorate from the Oklahoma City University School of Law with endorsements in Estate Planning and Business and Financial Services Law.  Shannon spent a number of years in full-time private practice before joining OSU in 2007.  As an educator and speaker, Shannon helps audiences understand the fundamental legal elements of farm business management and farm transition planning. In private practice, he helps farm families with the legal mechanics of the farm transition process.

Rodney Jackson

Mr. Rodney Jackson- Caleb Consulting

Rodney Jackson founded the Caleb Consulting Group in 2006, bringing over twenty years in the field of organizational development as an executive coach and leadership development professional, with graduate level credentials.  Rodney's education includes a Master of Arts Degree in Organizational Development from The Fielding Graduate University.  He is highly skilled in partnering with clients to take what is learned through these tools and developing solid communication and action plans.  As a professional facilitator and coach, he consults in strategic alignment, change management, team development, coaching, conflict management, and performance management. His human resources experience includes mergers and acquisitions, restructuring, building performance management and 360-feedback systems, and operating as a full business partner with internal clients.

Jason Karszes

Mr. Jason Karszes — Cornell CALS PRO-DAIRY

Mr. Karszes is a farm management specialist with the PRO-DAIRY Program at Cornell University.  Jason began working for PRO-DAIRY in 1998, after working the past seven years as the farm management educator for Cornell Cooperative Extension on the Erie-Wyoming Dairy-Livestock Team.  He began working for extension in 1991, after he had completed his B.S. and M.S. degrees in farm management and production economics from Cornell University in 1989 and 1991.  His extension teaching and research efforts have centered around financial performance and analysis programs for dairy farms and the use of Cornell’s Dairy Farm Business Summary Program.  Along with the whole farm financial analysis program, he also works in the area of general business management principals. Jason has also spent time working in the fields of business expansion, personnel management, estate planning, and dairy replacement analysis.

Bob Milligan

Dr. Robert A. Milligan — Dairy Strategies

Dr. Robert A. Milligan's goal is success for owners, managers, and employees through increased performance and enhanced job satisfaction. Bob is a Senior Consultant with Dairy Strategies LLC and Professor Emeritus at Cornell University.  His professional interests include human resource management, strategy, and organizational development for small business managers.  While at Cornell Dr. Milligan taught a popular undergraduate class titled Managing Human Resources in Small Businesses and led a team that developed the PRO-DAIRY Program.

Phil PlourdMr. Phil Plourd - Blimling and Associates

Mr. Plourd is Chairman and President of Blimling and Associates, a leading provider of support to individuals and firms seeking to successfully navigate the milk and dairy product markets.  He combines curiosity, understanding of economics and love of the written word to produce a wealth of materials for Blimling and Associates. He also works extensively with clients to help develop and execute risk management strategies. Phil has led numerous outlook sessions and dairy hedging workshops from coast-to-coast and around the world. Before joining Blimling, Phil previously worked at the Coffee, Sugar & Cocoa Exchange, Inc. where he was instrumental in the design, education and marketing efforts for the dairy futures and options markets.

Richard StupDr. Richard Stup - Cornell University

Richard Stup addresses challenges facing the agricultural industry through educational programs and applied research. He also provides leadership as a liaison between the agricultural industry and employment-focused regulatory authorities. His focus is on human resource management, enhancing employee engagement, regulatory compliance, and leadership development at the farm level. Prior to joining Cornell University, Dr. Stup founded Ag Workforce Development, a firm focused on improving individual and team performance through organization development and technology solutions. He also served agriculture in the Farm Credit system as a branch manager and senior leader. Earlier in his career, Richard was an Extension specialist with Penn State University, where he led the Dairy Alliance team and developed award-winning educational programming in human resource management. He earned his doctorate from Penn State in the field of Workforce Education and Development, including innovative research into the effects of human resource management on farm employee organizational commitment.

Tom WallDr. Tom Wall

Tom Wall, The Dairy CoachTM, is passionate about helping people reach their potential.  He’s been working with dairies throughout the country for over 17 years, helping managers create and implement simple systems that work while also training and coaching their employees.

Believing that the most important asset on the farm is the management personnel and their skills and experiences, the following companies provide key support for CDEP:

Ag Choice Farm Credit * Cargill Animal Nutrition * Dairy Farmers of America * Farm Credit East * Pioneer * Zoetis

Additional support is provided by DAIRYBUSINESSTM - The Future of Dairy