The Dairy Business Association (DBA) and Edge Dairy Farmer Cooperative have hired an experienced leader in the agricultural cooperative system to serve as managing director, a new role for the advocacy organizations.
Jeremy Henkels will drive the day-to-day business operations as the sister organizations enhance their focus on strategic priorities, CEO Tim Trotter said.
Henkels most recently was executive vice president-shared services for Agfinity, a member-owned cooperative that provides agronomy, energy, feed, grain and retail services in Colorado, Nebraska, and Wyoming. There, he oversaw human resources, marketing, safety, and information technology.
“I’m excited to welcome Jeremy to our team,” Trotter said. “His keen understanding of the cooperative system and proven leadership experience will help elevate our internal operations. This is essential to exceeding our members’ needs now and in the future.”
Henkels started his career as a human resources specialist for a pork producer based in Spring Green, Wis., then worked in HR roles in the radio broadcasting and health care industries. He returned to agriculture in leadership roles at Landmark Services Cooperative in Cottage Grove, Wis., before moving to Agfinity in 2018.
“I am excited to join DBA and Edge in the managing director role,” Henkels said. “As a native of Wisconsin and having worked with best-in-class dairies in my past work experiences, it will be a wonderful homecoming to the Midwest.”
Trotter had been executive director until January when he became CEO, a new role. His former position was reshaped into Henkels’ managing director role.
“I’m humbled the DBA and Edge team chose me to take the baton from Tim Trotter as he continues to transition into the new CEO role,” Henkels said. “I look forward to meeting and working with our members.”
DBA and Edge advocate for farmers and allied businesses on governmental policy — DBA at the state level in Wisconsin and Edge at the federal level — and provide other services. DBA’s members are in Wisconsin, and Edge’s members are located throughout the Midwest as part of the third largest dairy cooperative in the U.S.