Embracing Opportunities for a Viable Future

For more than 3 decades, the Northeast Dairy Management Conference has brought together progressive dairy farmers from across the Northeast to engage and learn about the latest developments and topics in the dairy industry. The conference is presented as a collaboration between Cornell CALS PRO-DAIRY and the Northeast Dairy Producers Association (NEDPA).

This biennial conference is designed to help dairy farms increase productivity and adapt to change with personal and business-wide strategies. With dynamic and informative sessions, participants will gain insights into the challenges and opportunities facing the dairy industry and explore new ideas and strategies for success. The conference also provides the opportunity to connect with other innovative dairy producers and advisors, establishing a network for long-term success. Don't miss out on this incredible event!

Presented by:

2024 conference agenda

The upcoming conference will center around the theme of Embracing Opportunities for a Viable Future. The sessions will be focused on strategies that can be utilized to initiate progress, invoke enthusiasm, and develop new leadership strategies to tackle challenges and capitalize on opportunities. Attendees will have the opportunity to learn from experts in their respective fields, network with peers, and gain valuable insights into the latest topics and developments in the dairy industry. The conference will provide a platform for attendees to share their experiences, exchange ideas, and collaborate on innovative solutions to the challenges that lie ahead.

Detailed Agenda

8:00 AM


9:00 AM

Heifer Inventory Management - What Does That Mean? Why Are We Still Talking About It After All These Years? 
Sponsored by ST Genetics
Peter Dueppengiesser - ST Genetics

This session will explore the key factors that play vital roles in heifer inventory management and how dairies have managed these factors to be successful in managing their inventories.  The session will also feature a discussion of opportunities create when heifer inventories are managed properly.

Maximizing Yield Using Geospatial Agronomy within the Context of Large Dairy Farms
Sponsored by Agricultural Consulting Services
Chris Fennig - Dairy One & MyFarms

Get a first look at opportunities that Dairy One and MyFarms have seized so far, to bridge the digital divide between precision agronomy and regulatory compliance through state-of-the-art technology and see what is to come.

Your Best Shot at Udder Health: Helping Cows Combat Mastitis Through Strategic Trace Mineral Supplementation
Sponsored by Axiota Animal Health
Dr. Craig Louder, Axiota Animal Health

Despite advances in technology, mastitis remains a multibillion-dollar problem for the dairy industry.  While the cow’s immune system is equipped to overcome infections, assuring the cow has the proper resources to fuel the immune system is essential.  This presentation will present new research about the utilization of injectable trace minerals to support the immune system and the positive effect it has on udder health.

9:55 AM

Mycoplasma Mastitis in Dairy Cows
Sponsored by Dairy One Cooperative
Dr. Roger Saltman - Dairy One & RLS Management Solutions

Mycoplasma species are microorganisms that are similar to bacteria but lack a cell wall. In dairy cattle, these organisms have been associated with mastitis, respiratory infections, early embryonic death, joint swelling, and middle ear infections. This presentation will discuss the characteristics of various disease types including the problems associated with Mycoplasma mastitis and recent research in improving the accuracy and speed of diagnostic detection, including the use of testing from a DHI milk sample.

Large Herd Robotic Milking: Experiences Shared from 16+ years of Robotic Operation
Sponsored by Finger Lakes Dairy Services
Clayton Hemminger and Pete Maslyn- Hemdale Farms

Hemdale Dairy in Seneca Castle, NY, installed 4 Lely robots in 2007 as “a test”.  At the time, 600 cows were being milked in the older parlor and replacement was needed.  Today, there are 26 Lely robots milking the entire herd of 1,650 cows. Clayton Hemminger and Dairy Manager Pete Maslyn will share their reasons for moving entirely to robotic milking along with lessons learned and results obtained.  Time will be allowed for Q & A.

What Are Our Top Producing Herds Doing? 
Sponsored by Novus International
Dr. Karen Luchterhand, Novus International

In her presentation, Dr. Luchterhand will give a glimpse into the dairies in the Northeast and Midwest that are getting the most from their cows through recent assessment data from the NOVUS’ C.O.W.S.® Program. The program, which has been supporting farms in North America since 2011, uses on-site assessments to help farmers unlock production bottlenecks and optimize the health and well-being of their cows. The qualitative and quantitative information collected from these dairies showcases key management changes that can make a big difference to cow comfort and profitability.

10:50 AM

From Parlor to Pens: Optimizing Your Time and Labor Through Better Farm and Cow Management
Sponsored by GEA Farm Technologies
Andy Lenkaitis - GEA Farm Technologies

Andy will use his real world, on-farm experiences to show how you can make the most of your time and labor resources with technology that can provide actionable analytics. Sort gates, animal monitors, herd management software, and advancements in parlor and robotic milking technology, are automating more and more processes on the dairy.  Unlock the power of these tools and see how your farm can benefit with the right data at your fingertips.

Value-Added Dairy: From Feasibility to Follow-Through
Sponsored by Farm Credit East
Heather Weeks, Kelsey Neckers, Emili Ponte- Farm Credit East

Value-Added Dairy is more than just increasing your milk price or a love of ice cream. Farm Credit East business consultants share the key factors that can make or break a value-added dairy enterprise, and how to evaluate business performance to ensure success for generations to come.

Pioneering Genetic Improvement to Create a More Sustainable Food Supply
Sponsored by ABS Global
Dr. Matthew Cleveland - ABS Global

As we approach 2030, a majority of food companies engaged in the animal protein supply chain have set sustainability targets and are seeking solutions to meet their commitments. Animal genetic improvement is the start of a more sustainable food supply and the combination of a structured beef x dairy supply chain and beef genetics targeted for use in dairy cows will be key to helping retailers achieve their goals. This session will discuss how beef genetics can be used as a climate smart solution that meet the needs of the dairy while providing demonstrated value to the beef supply chain.

11:35 AM


11:35 AM


12:45 PM


1:00 PM

Conference Kick-Off Keynote Presentation
Making Molehills Out of Mountains – Leadership Strategies that Work!
Andrew McCrea - Keynote Speaker, Oscar-Winning TV & Radio Broadcaster

Some of the challenges we face in our business and life may seem like huge mountains to climb.  Certainly, there can be obstacles that have no easy fix, yet many top producing operations find three skills help reduce the “Mountains to Molehills.”  Agricultural Oscar winner Andrew McCrea will take you on a fun and insightful look at why successful businesses and communities of varying sizes tend to have three shared factors that help them bring people together, focus on the task at hand and produce better results.  In this program Andrew will help you learn skills to better lead others, see the future with a better perspective and build a strong business foundation.

2:05 PM

Grabbing Hold or Letting Go: Embracing the Uncomfortable Work of Transitioning the Management & Leadership of Your Family Business
Barbara Dartt - The Family Business Consulting Group

Family businesses are a paradox. The flexibility, responsiveness and sacrifice that marked early success are the exact same traits that can get in the way of formalizing and coordinating decision making. In this session, we’ll cover how to develop and train next gens, manage changing roles and give tips on letting go.

3:05 PM

Tradeshow and Break

4:00 PM

5 Keys to Maintaining Balance: During and After Disruption
 Janine Stange - Singer and On-Air Personality

As the Greek philosopher, Heraclitus, said: “change is the only constant.” Well, Heraclitus would have been amazed if he were able to look around today. This session is a powerful, clear, and concise talk with an interactive activation at the conclusion designed to help your employees and/or members not only spark resilience, but maintain a path of positive growth during disruptive change.  Participants will leave inspired to move in spite of fear and shift their focus to doing “what they can, with what they have, right where they are” in both their personal and professional lives.

5:00 PM

Popp Undergraduate and Leadership Award Presentations

5:30 PM

Networking Dinner and Activities

6:30 AM


7:15 AM

NEDPA Annual Meeting - Open to all

8:30 AM

You Have More Influence Than You Think
Dr. Vanessa Bohns - Cornell University

If you’ve ever felt ineffective, invisible, or inarticulate, chances are you weren’t actually any of those things. While we often assume our actions, input, and requests will be overlooked or rejected, Vanessa Bohns and her research demonstrate that people see us, listen to us, and agree to do things for us much more than we realize — for better, and worse. In this talk, she will use the unappreciated power of a simple ask to reveal why instead of seeking ways to gain influence we should become more mindful of how we are using the influence we already have.

9:15 AM

Dairy Farming & Greenhouse Gas Emissions: Challenges & Opportunities 
Karl Czymmek, Lauren Ray, and Kirsten Workman, Cornell CALS PRO-DAIRY; Dr. Mike Van Amburgh and Dr. Olivia Godber, Cornell University Animal Science

A group of experts from Cornell University will be discussing the sources of greenhouse gas emissions on dairy farms and how they contribute to overall emissions. The panelists will share a range of potential solutions that examine cows, crops, manure, and other tools available to assess the greenhouse gas emissions and carbon footprint of dairy farming operations.

10:00 AM


10:30 AM

Concurrent Breakout Sessions

Setting the Foundation to Create a Farm Team Motivated to Achieve Business and Personal Goals
Jared Dueppengiesser - Milk Source

Jared will be discuss how the team approach at Milk Source was essential to creating a culture that motivates and elevates employees to achieve business goals. He will share his personal journey as a manager and how he used his strengths to inspire the team at the farm, leading to increased employee engagement and exceeding performance metrics.

The Value of Dairy Environmental Footprints for Your Farm and the New York Dairy Industry
Kirsten Workman, Cornell CALS PRO-DAIRY, Dr. Quirine Ketterings, Cornell CALS NMSP and Dr. Olivia Godber, Cornell CALS NMSP

The US dairy industry is under growing pressure to meet environmental stewardship goals and expectations set by policy makers, dairy processors, retailers, and consumers. There are challenges but also great opportunities resulting from this growing pressure, and both are starting to impact dairy’s market competitiveness. At Cornell University’s Nutrient Management Spear Program and PRO-DAIRY, we are working with commercial dairies across New York to conduct and evaluate sustainability assessments using the Cornell University Nutrient Mass Balance tool as well as Cool Farm Tool®, an online greenhouse gas, water, and biodiversity assessment tool of the Cool Farm Alliance. In this presentation you will learn about our findings with the two tools and the value of doing assessments for your farm and for the dairy industry in the Northeast.

11:30 AM

Creating a Productive Organizational Structure
Collin McCarthy - Cargill Animal Nutrition

Manure and Methane: What You Need to Know
Jason Oliver and Lauren Ray - Cornell CALS PRO-DAIRY

This session will discuss the basics of manure management GHG contribution to NYS total GHGs and trends, best practices for reducing methane from manure long-term storage, and present initial findings of PRO-DAIRY's work measuring methane and leak detection on manure systems at NYS commercial dairies.

12:15 PM


1:15 PM

Harnessing Technology for a Sustainable and Resilient Dairy Production at the Farm of the Future
Dr. Julio Giordano - Cornell University

The Farm of the Future must be shaped by research-based insights if it is to sustainably achieve key economic, environmental, and social goals. A multidisciplinary team of researchers, extension specialists, and educators from Cornell University are developing the Cornell Agricultural Systems Testbed and Demonstration Site (CAST) for Farm of the Future. A cluster of three farms in NY State focusing on row crops, forage, and dairy production that will host data-driven research, extension, and education. The CAST will advance data-driven solutions for dairy systems, integrating both commercially available and in-the-pipeline technologies and transformative practices. In this presentation, the latest research and demonstration activities with precision technologies for dairy herd management will be discussed. Special emphasis will be placed on tools and strategies for automated dairy herd monitoring and management.

2:15 PM

Lean System Approach to Farm Safety
Dr. Richard Stup - Cornell Agricultural Workforce Development

Cornell Ag Workforce Program and NYCAMH are working to develop a systems approach to improving farm safety, performance, employee well-being and engagement in a way that enhances consumer image of dairy farming.  This systems approach will enable multiple improvements to the farm enterprise by ensuring a healthy, safe workforce; providing workforce development (i.e., employee retention and leadership training); strengthening economic viability; and improving consumer perceptions of NYS dairy farms. Participating pilot farms will share documented improvements and their employees’ involvement in implementing them through a panel discussion.

4:00 PM


Keynote speaker spotlights

Andrew McCrea

Andrew McCrea is a farmer, rancher, tv and radio broadcaster and speaker. Since 1996 he has traveled the nation, producing the “American Countryside” features that are heard each day on over 110 radio stations and XM satellite radio and on television in U.S. Farm Report.   In addition, his weekend radio show and podcast, “Farming the Countryside” is a popular program heard on radio stations and on XM radio each weekend.  He continues to own and manage the farm where he grew up, McCrea Farms, loocated near Maysville, Missouri, where they own stocker cattle and farm corn and soybeans.

Barbara Dartt

Barbara Dartt is a principal consultant for The Family Business Consulting Group, assisting businesses with succession strategies, long-term planning, management transitions and family governance implementation, as well as other opportunities and challenges unique to family-owned businesses. Her experience in helping businesses navigate relationships, create structure, and formalize roles brings clarity to her clients’ organizational development needs. Barb brings strong facilitative skills to the areas of strategic design and planning, work group, council and Board formation. She also enjoys applying these facilitative skills to building trust and managing the conflict found within family businesses


Vanessa Bohns

Vanessa Bohns is a social psychologist, professor of organizational behavior at Cornell University’s ILR School, and author of the book You Have More Influence Than You Think. She holds a PhD from Columbia University and an AB from Brown University. Her research has been published in top academic journals in psychology, management, and law, and her research and writing have been featured in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Atlantic, The Economist, and on NPR's Hidden Brain, among other media outlets.

Janine Stange

Janine Stange is a motivational speaker, singer, and on-air personality.  She is best known for her historic journey to sing the Star-Spangled Banner in all 50 states – a mission she embarked on to honor our brave. Her story is the subject of “National Anthem Girl” a documentary by Kelly’s Filmworks now streaming on Amazon Prime. Janine has been featured on every major television network and appeared on national news shows including: TODAY Show, Fox & Friends, NBC Nightly News, and Fox News @ Night.  She can also be heard every Thursday morning on Sirius XM’s 60’s Gold with Phlash Phelps.

Dr. Julio Giordano

Dr. Giordano is the director of the Dairy Cattle Biology and Management Laboratory at Cornell University and a Co-Director of the Cornell Institute for Digital Agriculture (CIDA). Dr. Giordano’s research focuses on the development, implementation, and evaluation of technology for dairy production systems. The overarching goal of his research program is to integrate concepts of animal biology, farm management, engineering, and data-analytics for enhancing the reproductive performance, health, and profitability of dairy cattle. Dr. Giordano’s group has pioneered research with dairy cattle reproductive biology and health, precision technologies, automation of management tasks, and development of data-driven solutions for dairy herd management. Ultimately, Dr. Giordano’s research group strives for transforming dairy production systems through a better understanding of cow biology and implementation of technology.

Andrew McCrea profile image
Profile image of Barbara Dartt
Vanessa Bohns profile image
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Additional conference information

Hotel information and room reservations

Doubletree by Hilton

6310 State Route 298
East Syracuse, NY 13057
(315) 432-0200

Complimentary airport shuttle available.

    Group Room Block and Rate

    $132.00 per night single/double occupancy
    When making a reservation, reference the Northeast Dairy Management Conference (NEDM) to receive the reduced rate.

    Book online

    • Rates apply to reservations between March 5 and 7.  If you choose to make a reservation beyond these dates, the system will respond with no availability.
    • You may cancel your individual reservation up to 48 hours before your arrival without charge.
    • Reservations may be made online until February 4, 2024.  After this date, reservations can be made by calling the hotel directly. 
    • Reservation requests made after the deadline will be honored only if rooms are still available. 
    • All hotel rates are subject to state, local and occupancy taxes.

    Some hotel services may have changed.  Please contact the hotel directly at (315) 432-0200 for more information.

    Guest Rooms

    • Restaurant service will be limited to breakfast and evening bar service only.
    • Housekeeping must be requested daily.

    For more information

    profile picture of heather darrow
    Heather Darrow

    Conference Coordinator

    Animal Science


    Heather Darrow