News Release

Tuesday, March 21, 2023

CONTACT: Lisa Behnke, Communications Manager,
                   Jenna Langrehr, Communications Specialist,
PHONE:      608-224-6455

Global Dairy Leaders Honored with World Dairy Expo Recognition Awards

MADISON, WIS. – World Dairy Expo® is delighted to announce the recipients of the 2023 Expo Recognition Awards. Nominated and selected by their peers, these individuals have made remarkable contributions to the dairy industry and their communities. Honorees will be formally honored during the Recognition Awards Banquet at World Dairy Expo on Wednesday, October 4, 2023. Banquet tickets will be available at beginning on July 1.

The 2023 Expo Recognition Award honorees are as follows:

Dairy Producer of the Year
Randy Kortus, Lynden, Wash., Mainstream Holsteins, Jerseys and Ayrshires

Randy Kortus, Lynden, Wash., has built a dynasty of elite cattle genetics with his family’s herd, focusing on solid production cows while encompassing multiple breeds. Kortus and his family’s commitment to detailed and consistent herd management has provided each cow the opportunity to express her genetic potential, and it shows, as Kortus has developed 22 Dam of Merit cows, 41 Gold Medal Dam cows, and 13 cows achieving individual lifetime productions over 300,000 pounds of milk. He has also developed prominent sires in the Holstein and Jersey breeds, such as Mainstream Manifold and Mainstream Iatola Sparky. Beyond impacting the dairy industry through elite genetics, Kortus has committed over 25 years of service and leadership to Holstein Association USA and Select Sires, providing consultant services for herd owners and presenting seminars on a variety of dairy industry topics. Kortus has traveled to 27 countries on over 50 different trips, serving as a welcomed ambassador for the US dairy industry.

Industry Person of the Year
Tom Morris, Amery, Wis., Deronda Farm, Tom Morris Ltd., Cattle CONNECTION

A successful Registered Holstein breeder, educator, auctioneer/sale manager, publisher and industry leader, Tom Morris’ pedigree is as storied as any sale topper he’s sold. Morris and his wife Sandy, owners of Deronda Farm, developed more than 200 Excellent cows and held three complete dispersals during the 1980s, each boasting the highest average in the USA for the year. Owners and operators of Tom Morris Ltd., the couple has managed over 500 dispersals and consignment sales, including the World Classic at World Dairy Expo. Always an innovator, Morris helped launch the first 9-month Dairy Herdsman Technical College Program in the country, serving as an instructor for ten years. As owner/publisher of the Cattle CONNECTION, he connected buyers and sellers with the monthly dairy publication for 32 years. Morris is also a valued industry leader, currently serving as World Dairy Expo’s Dairy Cattle Exhibitor Committee chair and as Vice President of the Executive Committee.

International Person of the Year
Bonnie Cooper, North York, Ontario, Canada, Holstein Journal

Bonnie Cooper of North York, Ontario, Canada, is a well-known, highly respected and trail-blazing journalist who has dedicated her distinguished career of over 45 years to chronicling Canada’s dairy cattle industry as Editor of Holstein Journal. Throughout her time at Holstein Journal, Cooper devoted her way with words to telling meaningful stories about industry challenges and successes, genetic advancements, cow families and shows and sales. Cooper also managed the distinguished All-Canadian contest. Although Holstein Journal ceased publication in March 2019, Cooper continues her passion for writing about the dairy industry as a freelance journalist for a variety of publications, both in Canada and around the world. Most notably, she wrote “Holstein Milestones at the Royal” in honor of the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair’s 100th anniversary for Holstein Canada’s Info Holstein publication last fall. Cooper also continues to write and distribute throughout Canada a free, monthly Holstein Coming Events column called “Bonnie’s Holstein Dairy Events Listing”.

Serving as the meeting place of the global dairy industry, World Dairy Expo brings together the latest in dairy innovation and the best cattle in North America. The global dairy industry will return to Madison, Wis. for the 56th event, October 1-6, 2023, when the world’s largest dairy-focused trade show, dairy and forage seminars, a world-class dairy cattle show and more will be on display. Download the World Dairy Expo mobile event app, visit or follow WDE on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Spotify, Instagram or YouTube for more information.