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At its June meeting, the NMPF Scholarship Committee selected four graduate students to receive scholarships as part of the 2011 NMPF National Dairy Leadership Scholarship Program.

These students are all conducting research in areas that will benefit dairy cooperatives and producers.

The 2011 Hintz Memorial Scholarship, given to the top scholarship candidate, was awarded to João Paulo Nascimento Martins, a Ph.D. candidate in animal science at the Michigan State University. His research project is “The effect of enhanced luteinizing hormone pulses during ovulatory follicle development on oocyte competency and subsequent pregnancy losses in dairy cattle.”

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The 2011 Michigan Dairy Expo got off to an exciting start last month when the Supreme Champion Dairy animal, exhibited by Parker Hardy of Tipton, Michigan, topped the Michigan Livestock Expo Sale-abration with an impressive bid of $21,000. The buyer of the first dairy lot of the livestock sale was a strong contingency of dairy industry supporters who pooled their money to purchase the winning lot.

In total $33,000 was bid on four dairy lots: Supreme Champion; Reserve Junior Champion exhibited by Sarah Michalek, Deckerville, Michigan; Supreme Dairy Showman Brittany Westendorp of Nashville, Michigan; and the Grand Champion Cheese exhibited by the Michigan State University Dairy Plant. The money raised through the selling of the dairy lots goes back into the statewide dairy youth fund of the Michigan Youth Livestock Scholarship Fund. The 4-H members exhibiting the winning animal receive $1,000 each.

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E.I. Medical Imaging (EIMI) announced the release of the 1.07 firmware update for the Ibex family of ultrasound systems. The update (version 1.07) is available now for download for Ibex customers free of charge from EIMI Imaging via the company website. This update underscores EIMI’s commitment to customer feedback and product evolution. To download, simply register at www.eimedical.com for your login account information.

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The National Farm-City Council, a nonprofit organization dedicated to enhancing links between farm families and urban residents, is now seeking nominations for the first annual Charles Eastin Outstanding Service Award, paying tribute to an outstanding individual who has contributed to Farm-City activities as an advocate for accurate communications between rural and urban audiences.

The award is in honor of Charles "Charlie" Eastin, DVM, who passed away earlier this year and played a fundamental role in Farm-City activities. A board member for many years, Eastin was especially active in planning and initiating Farm-City events in the Lexington, Kentucky, area.

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Congressman Collin Peterson, ranking member on the House Agriculture Committee, has introduced a dairy policy "discussion draft" aimed at improving the long-term prospects for dairy farmers.

The Minnesota Milk Producers Association and the Wisconsin Dairy Business Association would like to thank Congressman Peterson and the National Milk Producers Federation for starting the dairy policy debate. Unfortunately, the policies included in the draft legislation need to be modified before moving forward.

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