The National Dairy Promotion and Research Board (NDB) honored Bill Ahlem and Joe Bavido as the 2015 recipients of the Richard. E. Lyng Award for their extensive contributions and distinguished service to dairy promotion.
Ahlem, a dairy farmer from Hilmar, Calif., and Bavido, a dairy farmer from Sharon, Tenn., and former national checkoff employee, were recognized at the Joint NDB/ National Milk Producers Federation/United Dairy Industry Association (UDIA) Annual Meeting in Orlando, Fla., on Oct. 28.
The award is named for former U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Richard E. Lyng, who played a critical role in implementing policies that led to the establishment of the NDB more than 30 years ago. The Lyng Award honors dairy industry leaders who have made a significant contribution to dairy promotion that benefits the entire industry.
“Bill and Joe represent the best in dairy farmer leadership,” said Zach Myers, North Carolina dairy farmer and chair of the NDB. Ahlem is a past chairman of the NDB who helped guide the checkoff through its evolution from generic advertising to growing sales by working with and through the industry. Bavido has been an advocate for dairy and the farmer checkoff since the early 1970s, joining the board of UDIA in 1987 and serving as that board’s vice chair from 1995 to 1998.