Midwest Dairy Association, the producer-funded checkoff organization that works to increase sales, foster innovation and inspire consumer confidence in dairy products and practices, recently underwent an organizational realignment. The new structure, which welcomes Chuck Cruickshank as the new senior vice president of industry relations to the staff, positions Midwest Dairy to better serve the future needs of Midwest dairy producers and the industry.

Under the new structure, the Industry Image and Relations program will be realigned into two program areas, including Industry Relations and the newly-created Integrated Communications. Cruickshank, who brings more than 35 years of agricultural experience and was most recently with Dairy Management Inc., will be responsible for the organization’s producer and board relations strategies as well as implementing industry relations activities in Minnesota and acting as the lead relationship manager for a number of Midwest co-ops and other cheese and ingredient processors. The Integrated Communications team, which will primarily be responsible for inspiring consumer confidence in dairy products and practices, will be led by Senior Vice President Donna Moenning, who brings with her 25 years of agricultural and communications experience, including five with Midwest Dairy.

To proactively position the nutritional value of dairy products, particularly as a solution for child health and wellness, the Nutrition Affairs and School Nutrition programs will be merged to become the Health and Wellness Team. It will be led by Senior Vice President and Registered Dietitian Molly Pelzer, who has more than 26 years with the organization. The Marketing Team will continue to be managed by Senior Vice President Kevin Stiles and will be focused on dairy product innovation and leveraging the dairy producers’ investment by working with and through industry partners. Stiles has more than 26 years of experience, including 11 years with Midwest Dairy.

Lastly, Brenda Goldman, who joined the organization in March, has become the vice president of human resources and planning. Goldman brings more than 10 years of human resources experience, most recently with Deluxe Corporation, and in addition to leading Midwest Dairy Human Resources, she will facilitate the strategic planning process. Mike Kruger remains as CEO of Midwest Dairy. He has been with the organization for more than 25 years. PD

—From Midwest Dairy news release


PHOTO: Chuck Cruickshank