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Winter Forage Speakers

Dr. Tom Overton

Cornell University PRO-DAIRY
Thomas R. Overton, Ph.D., is Professor of Dairy Management in the Department of Animal Science at Cornell University.  Tom is recognized nationally and internationally for his research and extension efforts relating to metabolism, immune function, and nutritional physiology of the transition cow and his work on milk component production in cows.  He serves as Director of the PRO-DAIRY program at Cornell, and as Associate Director of Cornell Cooperative Extension works with statewide and regional extension teams within New York to enhance the dairy and agricultural industries in New York State.  He teaches the applied dairy cattle nutrition course for undergraduates and co-teaches a course in dairy nutrition for veterinary students.

Tom is a native of northern New York who grew up primarily in Massachusetts. He has a B.S. degree from Cornell University and M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Illinois.  He returned to Cornell as an Assistant Professor in 1998 and was promoted to Associate Professor in 2004 and to Professor in 2013.  He has authored or coauthored more than 70 peer-reviewed scientific publications and numerous technical articles for conference proceedings, extension publications, and popular press articles.  He was awarded the Cargill Animal Nutrition Young Scientist Award by the American Dairy Science Association in 2006 and the ADSA Foundation Scholar Award in 2007.  In 2013, he was named a Faculty Fellow of the David R. Atkinson Center for a Sustainable Future at Cornell University.

Mr. Joe Lawrence

Cornell University PRO-DAIRY
Joe Lawrence grew up on a dairy farm in Northern NY and went on to complete undergraduate degrees in engineering and agronomy.  
After a short experience with Soil and Water Conservation District he had the opportunity to join the Nutrient Management Spear Program at Cornell and completed a master’s degree in crop and soil sciences with a focus on nutrient management.  Upon completion, Joe joined the team at Cornell Cooperative Extension of Lewis County as a field crops specialist where he gained a true appreciation and deep interest in a whole farm approach to forage management. This was followed by an opportunity in private crop consulting and valuable experience that furthered his interest and understanding in forages before joining the PRO-DAIRY team at Cornell University as a forage management specialist in 2016.

Dr. Peter Ballerstedt

Peter Ballerstedt received his Bachelor of Science in Agriculture in 1981 and Master of Science in 1983, both from the University of Georgia. He received his Ph.D. from the University of Kentucky in 1986, specializing in forage management and utilization, minoring in ruminant nutrition.

Peter has extensive experience in forage agriculture. He was the forage extension specialist at Oregon State University from 1986 until 1992. He is currently the Forage Product Manager at Barenbrug USA. He is a passionate advocate for forage and ruminant agriculture, and has spoken to a variety of audiences throughout the United States and in other countries. His knowledge, enthusiasm, and speaking style will provide an entertaining and informative presentation. Peter and Nancy live in western Oregon with their two dogs, J.J. and Conor.

Shawn Lasher

Progressive Dairy Solutions
Shawn Lasher is a member of the management and nutrition company Progressive Dairy Solutions based in Oakdale California. He was an operations manager of a large farm in central New York for 7 years. Shawn has worked in the feed mill industry consulting for grain companies before becoming an independent Nutrition Consultant. He provides nutrition and crop advisement to dairies across the northeast. His focus is entire farm profitability and improvement through adapting new technology.

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