Your 2021 Seminar Speakers


Michael Ballou
Texas Tech University

Presentation: Nutraceuticals: An Alternative Strategy for the Use of Antimicrobials in Dairy Calves
Monday, March 8, 2021 at 10:08 am (MST)

Dr. Michael Ballou is a professor and chair of the Department of Veterinary Sciences at Texas Tech University. Dr. Ballou has published over 75 peer-reviewed publications and given over 100 invited presentations. His research program focuses on understanding how various immunological factors contribute to both disease and health in dairy cattle. Michael grew up in the Central Valley of California and grew up working on his grandfather’s dairy. Michael completed his BS and Ph.D. at the University of California, Davis. Michael is married and has 3 young children.

Presentation Overview: The young dairy calf is one of the most susceptible animals on a farm to both gastrointestinal and respiratory diseases. Deficiencies in some aspects of their immune systems contribute to this increased risk for disease. Understanding these deficiencies and exploring how we can improve the immunity of calves is critical for a calf to be successful.

Jacquelyn Boerman
Purdue University

Presentation: Protein during the dairy cow transition period: What we feed and what they lose
Tuesday, March 9, 2021 at 11:00 am (MST)

Dr. Jackie Boerman is an assistant professor in the Department of Animal Sciences at Purdue University. She is originally from a dairy farm in western New York and received her BS from Cornell University. Jackie received her MS from the University of Illinois and her PhD from Michigan State University focusing on lipid metabolism in dairy cattle. In 2017, Dr. Boerman began an extension/applied research and teaching appointment at Purdue University. Her research and extension programs focus on nutrition and management strategies that promote the production and health of dairy cattle. Specifically, Jackie is interested in understanding variation in tissue mobilization around calving, identifying nutritional, and management changes that optimize both protein and fat mobilization.

Presentation Overview: Metabolic adaptation during the transition period includes increased protein mobilization from muscle. Even with increased amino acids being liberated from muscle, there is still a significant negative metabolizable protein balance in the days and weeks postpartum. We will be discussing some recent research done related to amino acid supplementation and protein mobilization that occurs during the transition period.

Trevor DeVries
University of Guelph

Presentation: Managing high-straw dry cow diets to optimize health and performance
Tuesday, March 9, 2021 at 10:30 am (MST)

Dr. Trevor DeVries is a Professor in the Department of Animal Biosciences at the University of Guelph and Canada Research Chair in Dairy Cattle Behavior and Welfare. Trevor received his B.Sc. in Agriculture from The University of British Columbia (UBC) in 2001. Immediately following he began graduate studies at UBC, where he received his Ph.D. in 2006. Following that, he spent one year as a post-doctoral fellow with Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada. In 2007 he was appointed as faculty with the University of Guelph in the Department of Animal Biosciences. In that position Trevor leads a highly productive research program focused on dairy cattle behaviour, nutrition, management, and welfare.

Presentation Overview: High-straw, controlled-energy dry cow diets may be used to promote consistency in body condition and maximize the volume of feed consumed in the dry period, resulting in improved health and performance in early lactation. Despite these benefits, these diets may not live up to expectation if not managed properly to ensure consistent consumption. Careful attention must be placed on forage particle size, ration moisture content, and management of that feed in the bunk.

John Gilleard
University of Calgary

Presentation: Coccidiosis in dairy calves
Monday, March 8, 2021 at 11:00 am (MST)

Dr. John Gilleard’s research interests are in the field of drug resistance and molecular diagnostics of livestock and human gastrointestinal  parasites.Dr Gilleard qualified as a veterinarian from the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Liverpool, UK. After three years in general veterinary practice, he undertook a PhD at the University of Glasgow and 5 years post-doctoral research at the Wellcome Centre for Molecular Parasitology, at the Department of Genetics, University of Glasgow. Dr. Gilleard was awarded a Wellcome Trust Travel Fellowship in 1998 to spend 2 years in the Faculty of Medicine, University of Calgary before returning to a faculty position at the Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Glasgow, UK. In 2007, he was appointed full Professor of Veterinary and Molecular Parasitology at Glasgow before moving to the University of Calgary in 2008 as Professor (Parasitology). He has held positions of Associate Dean Research, in Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, University of Calgary (2012-2017 and 2019) and President of the American Association of Veterinary Parasitology (2018).

Presentation Overview: Coccidiosis in dairy calves: the  focus will be on our current understanding of  clinical impacts, diagnostics, epidemiology and control and include an update of current research and knowledge gaps.

Julio Giordano
Cornell University

Presentation: Impact of altering the voluntary waiting period on reproduction and economics in dairy herds
Friday, March 12, 2021 at 10:30 am (MST)

Dr. Julio Giordano, DVM, MS, PhD – is Associate Professor of Dairy Cattle Biology and Management in the Department of Animal Science at Cornell University with a dual appointment in research and teaching. His research focuses on dairy cattle reproductive physiology, management, and the implications of reproductive performance on the economics of dairy farms. His research integrates basic and applied science to enhance the reproductive performance and productivity of dairy cattle. His basic research focuses on the elucidation of physiological mechanisms controlling reproductive function in dairy cattle. His applied program incorporates novel technologies to develop new and simplify established reproductive management programs. Through the integration of these basic and applied research components, Dr. Giordano’s laboratory strives to enhance the reproductive performance and productivity of cows thus, the economic viability of dairy farms.

Presentation Overview: In his presentation, Dr. Giordano will talk about the impact of altering the voluntary waiting period on reproduction and economics in dairy herds.

Les Hansen
University of Minnesota

Presentation: Daily profit of 3-breed crossbreds compared to Holsteins – Our experience from a 10-year designed study
Friday, March 12, 2021 at 11:00 am (MST)

Dr. Hansen has had a professorship at the University of Minnesota for the past 39 years. During those years, he has conducted research and taught both graduate students and undergraduate students on dairy cattle genetics. The focus of his research has been on the functional traits of dairy cows that have reduced genetic control compared to the production and type traits. Prior to 2000, Dr. Hansen’s research was primarily directed toward genetic improvement within breeds of dairy cattle. However, over the past 20 years, much of his research has shifted to crossbreeding systems as a mechanism to improve the performance of dairy cows for functional traits with a boost from hybrid vigour on top of genetic improvement within the contributing breeds. Dr. Hansen has been an invited speaker internationally in 21 countries.

His enthusiasm for dairy cattle genetics has rubbed off on his students, and many of them serve as staff geneticists for the breeding companies in the USA. In addition, Dr. Hansen is the long-time and highly-successful coach of the collegiate dairy cattle judging teams at the University of Minnesota. Therefore, he has close ties with Registered dairy cattle breeders for all of the major breeds in North America. Dr. Hansen has received recognized by the American Dairy Science Association with of numerous awards: Purina Mills Outstanding Teaching Award, 1992 J. L. Lush Research Award in Animal Breeding & Genetics, 2014 Hoard’s Dairyman Youth Development Award, 2016 Fellow, American Dairy Science Association, 2019 Furthermore, Dr. Hansen was recognized as the Distinguished Graduate of the Iowa State Dairy Science Club in 2011, as a Hall of Fame inductee by the Minnesota Livestock Breeders Association in 2015, and as the recipient of the Distinguished Service Award by Minnesota DHIA in 2018.

Presentation Overview: The first two generations of crossbred cows from a 3-breed rotation of Viking Red, Montbeliarde, and Holstein (ProCROSS) were compared with their Holstein herdmates in a carefully designed study with high-performance dairy herds. The crossbred cows had superior fertility, fewer stillborn calves, less health treatment cost, longer herd life, and lower replacement cost compared with their Holstein herdmates. Furthermore, the crossbred cows had more daily revenue from production across their lifetimes and more daily profit across their lifetimes compared with their Holstein herdmates.

Kathryn Proudfoot
University of Prince Edward Island

Presentation: Giving calves a good start: Lessons from the maternity pen
Monday, March 8, 2021 at 10:30 am (MST)

Dr. Katy Proudfoot is currently an Associate Professor at the University of Prince Edward Island’s Atlantic Veterinary College and Director of the Sir James Dunn Animal Welfare Centre. She completed her MSc and PhD at the University of British Columbia, and spent 6 years at the Ohio State University College of Veterinary Medicine. Her research focuses on the maternal behavior of dairy cows and maternity pen design, as well as the impact of housing and management practices on animal health and welfare.

Presentation Overview: In a natural setting, cows separate from herdmates to find a secluded, dry and comfortable place to give birth where the newborn calf will remain for the first few days of life. Can we apply some of these features of natural behavior in an indoor commercial setting? For this presentation, we will review the research to date on the impact of the maternity pen on the cow during labor, as well as the newborn calf in the first few hours of life.

Mike Van Amburgh
Cornell University

Presentation: Growth benchmarks and nutrient requirements of dairy heifers from weaning to calving
Tuesday, March 9, 2021 at 10:05 am (MST)

Mike Van Amburgh is a Professor in the Department of Animal Science and a Stephen H. Weiss Presidential Fellow at Cornell University where he has a dual appointment in teaching and research. His undergraduate degree is from The Ohio State University and his Ph.D. is from Cornell University. He teaches multiple courses and leads the Cornell Dairy Fellows Program, advises approximately 50 undergraduate students and is the advisor for the Cornell University Dairy Science Club. Mike currently leads the development of the Cornell Net Carbohydrate and Protein System (CNCPS/CPM Dairy), a nutrition evaluation and formulation model used worldwide. Through the modeling effort, he focuses on enhancing the efficiency of nutrient use by ruminants to improve the environmental impact of animal food production. A significant component of his current work is to understand whole animal and ruminal nitrogen metabolism and amino acid supply and requirements to enhance the development of the Cornell Net Carbohydrate and Protein System. Further, his group is active in developing methods to better describe the interaction between forage and feed chemistry, rumen function and nutrient supply to compliment the model. He has authored and co-authored over 100 journal articles and many conference proceedings and is the recipient of several awards including the American Dairy Science Foundation Scholar Award, the Land O’Lakes Teaching and Mentoring Award from ADSA, the American Feed Ingredient Association Award for Research, Journal of Dairy Science Most Cited Award, the CALS Professor of Merit Award and the CALS Distinguished Advisor Award. In 2016, he was named a Stephen H. Weiss Presidential Fellow, the highest teaching award given by Cornell University.

Presentation Overview: The presentation will discuss growth benchmarks for dairy heifers from weaning to calving and will integrate nutrient requirements and what that means for diet formulation, especially around weaning and early post-weaning. Other aspects to be discussed is the role of body composition at calving and the effect on first lactation milk yield as optimizing growth and body composition is the best way to optimize first and subsequent lactation milk yield.

Kent Weigel
University of Wisconsin

Presentation: Advancing genetic gain in dairy cattle through genomics and reproductive technologies
Friday, March 12, 2021 at 10:05 am (MST)

Kent Weigel is Professor and Chair of the Department of Animal and Dairy Sciences at UW-Madison. He holds a research, extension, and teaching appointment and serves as a technical consultant for numerous companies and organizations in the dairy genetics industry. His research focuses on genetic selection and genome-guided management programs to improve the productivity, health, fertility, and feed efficiency of dairy cattle using tools such as whole genome selection, advanced reproductive technologies, crossbreeding, electronic data capture systems, and artificial intelligence algorithms. Dr. Weigel has published approximately 200 peer-reviewed journal articles on various aspects of genetic improvement and management of dairy cattle and has given lectures to academic, industry, and producer audiences in more than thirty countries.

Presentation Overview: This presentation will focus on ways dairy producers can combine genomic testing with advanced reproductive technologies, such as sexed semen and in vitro fertilization, to enhance farm profitability. Genomic testing has become a routine practice on many dairy operations, and it is now possible to manage current and future replacement heifer inventories with great precision, selecting which females will contribute to the next generation and which will provide crossbred calves for the beef industry.