Mission: The University of Wisconsin Center for Dairy Profitability develops and delivers effective interdisciplinary education and applied research to dairy farms and dairy industry service providers resulting in sustainable profitable decisions, and a healthy and progressive dairy industry.

Better Planning, Better Decisions

Who We Are…

Mark Stephenson is the Director of the Center for Dairy Profitability. He is an Agricultural Economist whose area of specialty is Dairy Markets and Policy. In this position, Dr. Stephenson conducts and coordinates research and outreach activities related to the dairy industry. He is involved in applied research at the firm-level, including milk assembly costs, processing costs, and efficiencies. He is also active in sector-level performance including dairy policy and price forecasting policy and price forecasting.

Contact:  608-890-3755, mark.stephenson@wisc.edu

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Jenny Vanderlin is the Associate Director of the Center for Dairy Profitability and has over 22 years of experience with farm financial management programs and software. In her current position she collaborates with colleagues to develop and coordinate courses, conferences and educational programs in the areas of financial management and record-keeping.  Jenny coordinates the Heart of the Farm – Women in Agriculture Program and maintains the Center’s financial database FARMBENCH (formerly AgFA©).

Contact: 608-263-7795, jenny.vanderlin@wisc.edu

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Kevin Bernhardt holds a fifty percent split appointment as Professor for UW-Platteville School of Agriculture and Farm Management Specialist for UW-Extension and the Center for Dairy Profitability.  Teaching includes Agricultural Prices and Risk Management, Agribusiness Management, and Agricultural Marketing.  UW-Extension research and education efforts include farm and risk management, financial analysis, building business resiliency, and commodity marketing, particularly milk marketing. Before coming to Wisconsin he held positions as a Loan Officer, Hills Bank and Trust Company; Agricultural Economist, USDA/Foreign Agriculture Service; Fellowship, U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley’s Senate Office; Program Director, Agribusiness Program and Director, Pioneer Academic Center for Community Engagement – UW-Platteville.  Kevin holds a BS Agribusiness, Iowa State University; MS Economics and Business, North Carolina State University;  PhD Agricultural Economics, University of Nebraska–Lincoln. He grew up on a small (hobby) farm in Northcentral Iowa and is married with four kids; living in Platteville, Wisconsin.

Contact: 680-342-1365, bernhark@uwplatt.edu

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Joy Kirkpatrick has worked in University of Wisconsin Extension since 1993.  She began her Extension career as a county-based Dairy & Livestock Agent. In 2004 she became the Outreach Specialist for the University of Wisconsin’s Center for Dairy Profitability. In her current job she collaborates with colleagues to provide educational programs and information to farm businesses on farm succession planning.  Kirkpatrick received both her BS and MS degrees from SIU – Carbondale.  Programs include Returning to the Farm, Shifting Gears for Your Later Farming Years and other programs that focus on succession planning.

Contact: 608-263-3485, joy.kirkpatrick@ces.uwex.edu

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Nate Splett, Emeritus UW River Falls is a Farm Management Outreach Specialist for CDP and UW-Extension.  Nate worked as a University of Wisconsin-Extension Farm Financial Management Specialist for many years conducting workshops on farm financial analysis. As a professor, he regularly taught Agricultural Economics and Farm Management at the University of Wisconsin-River Falls and served as the associate dean of the College of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences (CAFES). He is a former loan officer with the Farm Credit System and examiner/supervisor with the Farm Credit Administration.  In his current position, he is working on the development of the FARMBENCH financial benchmarking tool.

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