The FarmFirst Dairy Cooperative board of directors made the tough decision to move it’s district member meetings from 17 in-person meetings throughout its seven state membership region to a single-day virtual format due to concerns and uncertainties surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic. The virtual meeting will be on Wednesday, December 2, 2020.
“Our cooperative’s district member meetings have always been a great opportunity for members to gather, enjoy a wonderful meal, receive updates on cooperative programs, services, and advocacy efforts, and speak directly with cooperative leaders,” says John Rettler, dairy farmer from Neosho, Wis. and president of FarmFirst Dairy Cooperative. “This decision was not easy because the board would like nothing more than to meet with our members, especially after the challenging year we’ve all experienced. While the experience will be much different this year, we hope that our members will take the time to join us virtually on December 2.”
Similar to past district meetings, members will be provided with a year in review of the cooperative’s accomplishments and program updates. In addition, there will be time for members to discuss potential resolutions to the cooperative’s public policy.
Elections for board of director positions, District & Resolution Committee members and delegates will be conducted by a mail-in ballot only and will be sent in early November. Members will receive reports from the staff that lead the Family Dairies and Fox Valley Quality Control Lab divisions, respectively.
National Milk Producers Federation President and CEO, Jim Mulhern, will also join virtually for a real- time update on dairy policy, trade and other issues being discussed and acted on in Washington, D.C.
“Although we’ve had to change our format to due to myriad of challenges due to social distancing and size limits for public events, we are excited to conduct our meeting virtually as it may provide more opportunity for more of our members to participate and learn more about their cooperative,” says Jeff Lyon, general manager for FarmFirst. “By holding a virtual meeting our cooperative leaders and national policy leaders can speak directly to our members and at the same time we can be respectful of members’ time.”
Members are encouraged to sign up to be notified of when to register for the virtual district meeting by visiting www.FarmFirstDairyCooperative.com. Election ballots and more information will be sent to members leading up to the virtual meeting on December 2.
FarmFirst Dairy Cooperative, established in 2013 and based in Madison, Wis., represents farmers in Wisconsin, Minnesota, South Dakota, Michigan, Iowa, Illinois and Indiana by providing legislative and regulatory advocacy, dairy marketing services, disaster protection, laboratory testing opportunities and industry promotion. FarmFirst Dairy Cooperative is a merger of three long-time prominent Wisconsin-based cooperatives. Learn more about FarmFirst Dairy Cooperative by visiting: www.FarmFirstDairyCooperative.com.