Allison Hermes on Farm

Allison Hermes

Organic Valley Marketing Programs Manager

Viroqua, WI

Allison Hermes has been helping spread the Organic Valley word since 2012 when she was hired to coordinate farm tours on the Farmers in Marketing team. Now the Marketing Programs Manager, she has her hand in just about every OV-branded campaign—Save the Bros anyone? Prior to her CROPP career, she attained her master’s degree across the sea at the University of London (home of Kingdom Cheddar!). In addition to hitting the books, she also volunteered with the Fair Trade Foundation and added chocolate to her resume with an internship at Divine Chocolate. Both experiences fueled her interest in the field of marketing and contributing to a sustainable food system.

Outside of work Allison is always looking for the next fitness challenge as well as any opportunity to enjoy the great outdoors. She’s currently loving Crossfit, cycling, yoga and mastering aerial silks. She’s also excited about picking vegetables while participating in her first worker share CSA this summer!

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Jane Even

Organic Valley Cooperative Equity Representative

Driftless Wisconsin

Meet your OV Employee who wears many hats, including:

Farm Momma/Grammy-who-lives-next-door”: aka ‘Momma Jane’

“Amateur Cook “(you grow it—I’ll cook it!)

Food Snob  (Love to cook & really Love to eat, but prefer Organic, please)

Libation lover   (Half Irish/Half German. Palete genetically predestined).

Hats include one good Bike helmet  (Gotta protect what’s left of the Grey matter)

**Other loves/hats include Books (recovering English major) , Music (keeps me moving) , Movies & Theatre   (skip the Horror genre), the Great Outdoors , and Life Itself.  

And let’s not forget… “Love Your Mother”   (One size fits all)

barn hatsmalleat localfood hatlettuceiceskeletoncat in hatjohnnyearthfrog

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Eli La Franchi

Organic Valley Dairy Farmer

Coos County, OR

Eli La Franchi’s family owns a 1500 acre farm centered in the Conquille Valley of Coos County Oregon. This is where they milk between 375 – 420 Holstein and Jersey cows at any given time.  This family run business has Eli’s dad Ron – a 4th generation dairy farmer, younger brother Josh, and Eli managing a cattle ranch, alfalfa farm, and an organic dairy among other family operations.

Eli graduated from Oregon State University nine years ago with a degree in Agricultural Business and a minor in General Ag. After graduation he managed their family owned hotel and just recently moved back to help manage the farm.  He has one son, 7 year –old Jackson.

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Myrilla Hartkopf

Organic Valley Dairy Farmer

Kennebec County, ME

Myrilla Hartkopf grew up on her parents’ dairy farm in central Maine.  The Hartkopfs embraced organic management practices early on, and were one of the first dairy farms in Maine to make the switch from conventional to organic.  They care for 280 acres of land and about 70 dairy cows. To the Hartkopfs, that means tender care for their soil and animals as much as it means educating a new generation while producing and marketing safe, wholesome, delicious food.  Besides raising dairy cows they also have sheep, goats, horses, bunnies, and pigs.  Each summer the Hartkopfs offer an on farm summer camp for children where Myrilla has been a counselor teaching about animals and the environment.

Myrilla, the youngest of the three Hartkopf children, is currently a sophomore studying Environmental Conservation and Sustainability at the University of New Hampshire.

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Altfrid and Sue Krusenbaum

Organic Valley Dairy Farmer

Walworth County, WI

Altfrid learned to farm in the 1970s, through university studies—where he earned a graduate degree in Animal Sciences—and several internships. As an environmentalist, Altfrid’s goal was to pursue a healthy alternative to chemical-intensive, large scale agriculture. “Agriculture as a business desperately needs a change,” he says. “I aimed to create a viable alternative that others could follow.”

And that’s exactly what the Krusenbaums have done. Altfrid, along with his wife Sue and their three children, have farmed organically since 1990 in southern Wisconsin. They had 115 dairy cows, plus 80 head of young stock, on 320 acres. All but 100 acres, which were planted with various crops, were utilized for a pasturing system called “intensive or rotational grazing.” The Krusenbaums also diversified their “herd” to include chickens and beef cows.  In years past, the Krusenbaums hosted interns, so that young people could share in the vision of the family farm.

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Brian A. Benson

Organic Valley DC Manager

La Crosse, WI

Brian Benson has been involved with cycling for most of his adult life.  Brian started in distribution back in 1997 when he worked for Schwinn/GT Bicycles.  Ever since then Brian has always had a passion for cycling as well as working in the Supply Chain/Logistics arena.  He is currently in charge of a mountain biking team(Organic Valley p/b Ale Asylum) in the La Crosse, WI area.

Brian has been married for 10 plus years to his beautiful wife Kara who also works for the COOP.  She works in our consumer relations department and loves every minute of it.  Brian and Kara have two enthusiastic young boys, (Chance on the right, and Cruz on the left who are 6 and 3.)  They spend most of their free time at bike races, running half marathons or attending farmer’s market events in the La Crosse area.

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Jake Wedeberg

Organic Valley Dairy Farmer

Crawford County, WI

Jake works on his family’s century farm near Gays Mills, Wisconsin.  They milk 65 cows in the unglaciated, rolling hills of southwest Wisconsin.  The farm has been certified organic for 26 years. He and his brother are proud and excited to be fifth generation organic farmers and that their dad, Jim, is one of the seven founding farmers of the Organic Valley cooperative.

Jake’s vision of a sustainable future is for everyone to realize that everything is connected. Jake says, “Organic farming starts with the health of the soil. Healthy soil equals healthy grass, animals, milk, products and people. And really, organic farming practices protect our planet and our future. I think kids need to understand that what they eat and how it was grown matters and I am excited to teach them all about it!”

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hans wolfisberg

Hans Wolfisberg

Organic Valley Dairy Farmer

Whatcom County, WA

Hans Wolfisberg’s 80-acre Edelweiss Dairy sits along the Nooksack River that flows near the Canadian border in Northern Washington. The dairy’s Swiss appellation is homage to Hans’ childhood, growing up on a small dairy in his home country of Switzerland.

Going organic was a natural progression for the Wolfisbergs. Hans had an interest in rotational grazing, which he became familiar with when he spent time in New Zealand. At home, they had always kept antibiotics to a minimum, and had used no hormones on their animals. All this added up to a fairly smooth transition to organic certification. Within a year’s time, they became fully certified and joined Organic Valley in 2005.

Being able to raise five boys on the farm is truly one of the rewards of their profession.  It provides profit and sustainability, so the next generation can take over.