Forty-one years is enough. So, the CEO of American Dairy Association, Indiana, Deb Osza, is calling it a career at the end of this year when she retires from her dairy checkoff work. Four decades is a long time, and Osza has seen the many changes during that period, primarily the shrinking of the industry.
“We have fewer dairy farms operating in Indiana today than we did forty years ago, and even in terms of promotion, my area of expertise, we had four promotional offices in the state forty years ago, and today we have one,” she said. “So, there’s been consolidation throughout the industry, across the industry and across the country.”
And even with that shrinkage, she feels very good about the future and the role the Indiana dairy checkoff organization will play.
“I feel great about the strength of American Dairy Association, Indiana and our mission to spread the good nutrition news about milk and milk products, and also the good news about the work that farmers do in helping to feed a hungry world,” she told HAT. “I think we’re strong, we have a wonderful team, we have a young team. They’re very passionate about what they do.”
As she plans her retirement, and it’s sure to include many outdoor activities, Osza will keep memories of Indiana’s dairy men and women close.
“You know I think about several of the dairy farmers who have served as mentors to me. They have been very helpful to me in my career and I really do owe them a debt of gratitude. I will miss the people and I think that’s what most people say when they retire. I love what I do, I love the people, and they I will miss, but I have many friends that we’ll stay in touch with each other.”
Best wishes to Deb Osza in her retirement and to her replacement, a 10-year member of the team at ADA Indiana, Jenni Browning.