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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.

Mr. Roger Cady

Dr. Roger Cady — Elanco Animal Health

Dr. Cady currently serves as a Sr. Technical Consultant for Elanco Animal Health. In this role, Dr. Cady serves as the science officer assuring Elanco dairy products and marketing efforts are supported by sound science and sustainable agricultural practices. Research and dairy cattle industry expertise includes training as a quantitative geneticist with a heavy emphasis on statistics and dairy management records. Throughout his career Cady has worked to integrate research information with practical on-farm management in the area of heifer management and on-farm economics including how micro-economics the farm and the macro-economics of the industry interact. Roger is currently focused on applying productivity to environmentally sustainable practices in the dairy industry.

Barbara Dartt

Dr. Barbara Dartt – The Family Business Consulting Group

Barbara Dartt is a consultant for The Family Business Consulting Group, assisting business people with planning and team development through her expertise in business succession, family governance, strategy development, financial management, and the opportunities and challenges unique to family-owned businesses. Barb has been supporting family business entrepreneurs since 2001, previously as a Senior Business Consultant at Lookout Ridge Consulting and Salisbury Management Services, and as a founding partner of GROW: The Family Business Advisors.

Bernie Erven

Dr. Bernie Erven - The Ohio State University

Dr. Erven is Professor Emeritus of Agricultural Economics at The Ohio State University.  At Ohio State, his teaching, extension and research activities were in human resource management and business management.  His consulting work with small businesses through Erven HR Services LLC focuses on family business relations and human resource management.  For 40 years he has worked on issues such as hiring, training, motivation, discipline, compensation, and performance feedback.  He also does workshops on succession and human relations in family businesses, communication, handling the stress of management, team building and time management.


Brent Gloy


Dr. Brent Gloy- Agricultural Economic Insights

Dr. Brent Gloy is an agricultural economist specializing in agricultural finance and agribusiness management. His research has been quoted and referenced in media ranging from the farm press, to the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, the Economist, among others. Brent founded and served as the first Director of Purdue’s Center for Commercial Agriculture.  Dr. Gloy’s current writings can be found on his website Agricultural Economic Insights, which he co-founded with David Widmar.  Dr. Gloy has held tenured faculty positions in agricultural economics at Purdue University and Cornell University.   He currently operates his family farming operation in Southwest Nebraska, is a partner in Agricultural Economic Insights, LLC, and serves as a visiting professor at Purdue University. Brent received his masters and doctorate degrees in agricultural economics from Purdue University and his undergraduate degree from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Rodney Jackson

Mr. Rodney Jackson- PeopleFirst, A Division of Zoetis

Rodney Jackson brings 20 years of experience in the field of Organizational Development and is a Senior Coach at PeopleFirst, a division of Zoetis.  Over the past four years, Rodney has worked with leaders and business owners throughout the agriculture sector, teaching workshops and engaging in one-on-one coaching.  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 communi- cation 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 University, 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 Plourd

Mr. 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. 

Dr. Mark Stephenson

Dr. Mark Stephenson — University of Wisconsin

Dr. Stephenson is the Director of Dairy Policy Analysis, where he has been employed since July, 2010. In this position, Dr. Stephenson conducts and coordinates research and outreach activities related to the dairy industry. He is involved in applied research at the firm-level, including milk assembly costs, processing costs and efficiencies, new processing technologies and new dairy ingredients. He is also active in sector-level performance including dairy policy and price forecasting. Mark has a second title as Director of Wisconsin's Center for Dairy Profitability. In this capacity, he works with faculty and staff to coordinate a multi-disciplinary approach to dairy farm-level problem solving and planning.

Dr. Mark Stephenson

Mary Kay Williams – MindShift Consulting

Mary Kay Williams, is the owner of MindShift Consulting, a training and consulting firm that focuses on helping individuals and organizations ‘shift’ their perspectives.  Mary Kay earned both her B.S. in Education and M.Ed. in Training and Development from Penn State. She has earned her senior in human resources professional (S.P.H.R) certification.  She lives in Spring Mills, PA with her husband Greg in their 1808 home that was once a tavern….



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 * Dupont Pioneer * Farm Credit East * Zoetis


Additional support is provided by media partners:

California Dairy Magazine

DAIRYBUSINESSTM - The Future of Dairy

Progressive Dairyman