Kentucky Pork Producers gather in Bowling Green for 2015 Annual Meeting

Retiring KPPI, Inc. Director Wendell Ockerman receives a standing ovation at the Kentucky Pork Producers Association Banquet.

The Kentucky Pork Producers held their annual meeting in Jan. 16-17 at the Sloan Convention Center in Bowling Green. Over 100 members were in attendance.
From 9:30 a.m. until 3:30 p.m. on Friday, pork producers were invited to attend the Kentucky Commodity Conference activities also being held at the Sloan Convention Center.

The pork producer activities began later that evening with entertainment by The Wrights, a musical duo made up of Carson and Hunter Wright, and the annual Scholarship Auction Banquet.

Dr. Richard Coffey presented the Outstanding Service Award to Dr. Robert Harmon, Chair of the University of Kentucky Department of Animal and Food Sciences Veterinarian.

Dr. Dennis Liptrap presented the Associate Member of the Year award to Commissioner of Agriculture James Comer. Comer brought greetings on behalf of the Ky. Department of Agriculture and discussed the work he and his department are doing to protect the agriculture industry and further promote the Kentucky Proud marketing program.

With the help of generous bidders, this year’s auction raised over $6,000 for the scholarship fund.

Producer education panels began at 9 a.m. Saturday morning. Dr. Bob Thompson of PIC presented a seminar on PEDv.

Producers were given an overview and projection on hog and grain markets from Dr. Steve Meyer, President of Paragon Economics, Inc. “Swine are not just to dine, Pork & Pharmacy” was the title of this year’s Ladies Program. It consisted of a round table discussion with pharmacist and pork producer Rosie Cochran.

Following the producer educational sessions, the Kentucky Pork Producers Association held their annual meeting. The meeting included a financial report, reports from the National Pork Producer’s Council and National Pork Board, an update on the website and an overview of Kentucky Pork Producer Association activities from Executive Director Bonnie Jolly.

The meeting ended with the election of the 2016 KPPA officers and delegates.

The annual meeting concluded Saturday evening with the Kentucky Pork Producers Association Banquet. Dr. Dennis Liptrap inducted Dr. Richard Coffey into the Kentucky Pork Producers Association Hall of Fame. Dr. Coffey is the new Chair of the University of Kentucky Department of Animal and Food Sciences.

Maurice Herd presented a plaque of appreciation to retiring KPPI, Inc. Director Wendell Ockerman.

Ockerman’s more than 30 years of service to KPPI were celebrated with a photo slideshow put together by KPPI staff. The staff also presented Ockerman with a plaque, celebrating him for being “#1 boss.”

New KPPA President Dr. Dennis Liptrap presented retiring President Bill Cochran with a plaque to thank him for his service.

The festivities concluded with a cake and ice cream party in honor of Ockerman’s retirement.

This article originally appeared in the Spring 2015 issue of The Kentucky Pork Producer News. Article and photos by Celeste Harned of Celeste Communications.