Thank you to the 2024 WCDS Speakers!


Annie AcMoody

Annie AcMoody is the VP, Policy & Trade for Dairy Farmers of Canada (DFC). She has been with the organization since October 2020, overseeing policies, analysis and recommendations that support DFC objectives. Her work at DFC also focuses on programs supporting sustainable production practices in the industry, including proAction and DFC’s sustainability strategy.

Katherine Altman

Katherine first became involved in emergency management as part of the southern Alberta 2013 flood response and recovery. Her experience working as an advocate with and for indigenous communities in their pursuits of self-determination coupled with spending her childhood on a community pasture in Alberta's peace country created a great foundation for working with distinct and remote communities. Since then Katherine transitioned into working full time in the emergency management field with Alberta Agriculture and Irrigation.

Anton Borst

Anton Borst is one of the owners of Halarda Farms Ltd in Manitoba. Halarda Farms Ltd is currently milking 1300 cows with 20 milking robots and farms approximately 5000 Acres . In addition to Dairy farming, Anton does management consulting work for several farms in North America, specializing in robotic farms.

Barry Bradford

Dr. Bradford completed his BSc at Iowa State University and a PhD in animal nutrition at Michigan State University. He served on the faculty at Kansas State University from 2006 to 2019, and in 2020 he returned to Michigan State as the Clint Meadows Chair in Dairy Management. Bradford’s research focuses on dairy cattle nutrition and metabolism as well as dairy management.

Kate Creutzinger

Dr. Creutzinger is an assistant professor of dairy science in the Department of Animal and Food Science at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls. There, she teaches dairy production and animal welfare and performs basic and applied research aimed at improving the lives of dairy cattle. Her expertise is in transition dairy cows, non-replacement calves, and animal welfare.

Glen Duizer

Dr. Duizer is a veterinarian and epidemiologist with Manitoba's Chief Veterinary Office, whose work includes animal health surveillance, disease preparedness and response, and veterinary extension in the livestock and poultry sectors. He leads the province’s animal health investigation and surveillance programs, coordinating the detection and response to reportable and emerging animal diseases in Manitoba.

Dianne Finstad

Dianne Finstad has some 40 years experience in communications, including television, radio and print, as well as moderating and hosting events. She specializes in agriculture and rodeo coverage. Currently, she hosts Frontline Farming Canada, an agricultural TV program on RFD-TV Canada.

Kevin Folta

Dr. Kevin Folta is a molecular biologist/genomics expert with an emphasis in fruit crops. He also specializes in strategic communication, and has been recognized with prestigious awards for efforts in agricultural and science communication.

Matthew Gaudreau

Dr. Gaudreau is the Executive Director of Policy and Economics at the Canadian Dairy Commission, a federal Crown Corporation. He joined the organization in 2016 as a senior analyst and, with his team, works on a variety of topics in dairy supply management, from measuring and forecasting Canadian demand, to establishing annual price changes for milk from the farm, to engaging in trade files related to CUSMA and CPTPP. Matthew has worked alongside dairy sector stakeholders across the dairy supply chain and in government.

Paul Kononoff

Dr. Kononoff is a native of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Canada. He holds a BSA and an MSc in animal science from the University of Saskatchewan (Saskatoon, SK) and a PhD in dairy and animal science from The Pennsylvania State University (University Park, PA). Paul is currently a Professor at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln and serves as Editor-in-Chief for the Journal of Dairy Science.

Connie McLellan

Connie grew up on a dairy farm milking 200 cows in Nova Scotia. She obtained a degree in Environmental Horticulture from Dalhousie University and has been working in some capacity within the dairy industry for the last 12 years. She moved to Quebec in 2014 and lives and works part time on her partners family farm where they milk 100 cows. In recent years, Connie was the herd manager of a large dairy farm in Qc, before becoming the Dairy Lead for the National Sustainability Team at Ducks Unlimited Canada in spring 2023.

Lisa McCrea

Dr. McCrea is a veterinarian and the dairy team manager at Agwest Veterinary Group. After graduating from the Atlantic Veterinary College, Lisa spent 10 years practicing in large animal clinics in Ontario where she specialized in dairy herd health and reproduction. Lisa is now a managing partner at Agwest Veterinary group, and apart from working as a Veterinarian on dairy farms, she has also taken on the role of consulting, and producer training. 

Clemence Nash

Dr. Nash has been very active in the Canadian Dairy Health and Welfare space, having contributed to the original Animal Care module through her research, and leading Traceability and Animal Care files for DFC. Most recently, she has returned to Novus as the C.O.W.S. Senior commercial director, but continues to work closely with Dairy Farmers of Canada on key Animal Care files.

Diego Nobrega

Dr. Nobrega is an Assistant Professor in Veterinary Medicine at the University of Calgary and holds a Canada Research Chair in One Health and Antimicrobial Resistance. After receiving his DVM, Diego worked in private practice for two years. He earned his PhD in Infectious Diseases from the University of Calgary. His 2-year postdoctoral appointment at the Ontario Veterinary College included work with the Public Health Agency of Canada. His program focuses on developing evidence-based antimicrobial resistance intervention and control measures.

Masahito Oba

Dr. Masahito Oba was born and raised in Japan, and completed his PhD in Dairy Nutrition at Michigan State University. He came to the University of Alberta in 2004 as an Assistant Professor, and is currently a Professor of Dairy Nutrition and Management. Dr. Oba was the recipient of the ADSA Applied Dairy Nutrition Award in 2017, and his recent research focuses on nutritional management during the calving transition period.

Vern Osborne

Dr. Osborne was born and raised on a Master Breeder Holstein operation near Rockwood Ontario. After completing an MSc and PhD at the University of Guelph, he was a Professor at Ridgetown College before becoming the Marketing Director for Semex Canada, where he developed the current genetic mating program. Vern is now a Professor at the University of Guelph where he is internationally recognized for his work in water nutrition of dairy animals and dairy facility design. He is also currently the Science and Design Lead for the Mission 2050 project, a conceptual framework plan that would replace Guelph’s/OMAFRA’s dairy, swine and poultry research facilities. 

Sara Place

Dr. Sara Place is an expert in livestock systems sustainability with over a decade of experience in academia, industry associations, and private industry. She joined Colorado State University’s AgNext, a research collaborative focused on sustainable animal agriculture, in August 2022. Sara’s research focuses on enteric methane emissions measurement and mitigation from cattle. Previously, she was the chief sustainability officer for Elanco Animal Health, senior director for sustainable beef production research at the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association and an assistant professor in sustainable beef cattle systems at Oklahoma State University.

José Santos

Dr. Santos is a Professor in the Department of Animal Sciences at the University of Florida where he conducts research and extension to develop technologies that enhance efficiency of dairy production, in particular improvements in peripartum health and reproduction. He earned his DVM degree from São Paulo State University in Brazil, completed an M.Sc. and Ph.D. degree at the University of Arizona, and a clinical residency in Dairy Production Medicine in 2000 in the School of Veterinary Medicine at the University of California Davis.