About

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The Project/El Proyecto

Dr. Ronald Erskine (y Dr. Andres Contreras Bravo en español) explain the aims of the Quality Milk Alliance/ Alianza para la Calidad de Leche, which is dedicated to reducing antibiotic use among dairy cows by half and mastitis by a third within five years. The alliance is a partnership among Michigan State University, Florida A&M, Penn State, and Mississippi State. This project is supported by the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative Competitive Grant No. 2013-68004-20439 from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture.

Quality Milk Audit

Our Team

Michigan State University

Dr. Ronald Erskine

Dr. Ronald Erskine

Dr. Ronald Erskine completed his bachelor’s degree in Biochemistry and his D.V.M. at the University of Illinois in 1981. Following work in private practice in Pennsylvania, Dr. Erskine completed his M.S. and Ph.D. at Pennsylvania State University while working as a field investigator for the Animal Diagnostic Laboratory and as a self-employed veterinarian. Currently, Dr. Erskine serves as professor in the Department of Large Animal Clinical Sciences in the College of Veterinary Medicine. His research focuses on bovine infectious disease, especially in mastitis and milk quality. He has published extensively on prevention strategies, applied immunology and antimicrobial drug use. He teaches dairy production medicine to veterinary students and guest lectures on dairy health topics in animal science courses. He has published over 50 articles in peer-reviewed journals and has been invited to present seminars and short-courses at over 100 state, national, and international professional meetings. Currently Dr. Erskine is co-chair of the MSU Dairy Extension Team, serves on the Dairy Exclusion Review Board for the state of Michigan, and is a board member of the National Mastitis Council.

Dr. Rubén O. Martinez

Dr. Rubén O. Martinez

Dr. Rubén O. Martinez is professor of sociology and director of the Julian Samora Research Institute at Michigan State University. He is a nationally known scholar with expertise in the areas of diversity in higher education, race and ethnic relations, and diversity leadership. Among his areas of research focus are leadership and institutional change, education and ethnic minorities, youth development, environmental justice, and Latino land ethics. Dr. Martinez is the editor of the Latinos in the United States book series by Michigan State University Press. He has three co-authored books: Chicanos in Higher Education (1993), Diversity Leadership in Higher Education (2006), and a Brief History of Cristo Rey Church in Lansing, MI (2011). He has also edited a volume on Latinos in the Midwest (2011). He is currently working on a volume on Latino/a college presidents and one on the impact of neoliberalism on Latinos.

Dr. Andres Contreras

Dr. Andres Contreras

Dr. Andres Contreras earned his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees at Michigan State University. His master’s degree focused on mastitis and milk quality. His doctoral degree included work on metabolic and immune adaptations of dairy cows during the periparturient period. Dr. Contreras came to the United States from Bogota, Colombia, where he managed his family’s pasture-based dairy operation. His career has been dedicated to dairy production. In Colombia, he began his practice consulting for tropical cow-calf operations and grazing dairy farms. He later a high pedigree herd in Canada and then worked as a field veterinarian for a large dairy herd in West Michigan. His research interests include mastitis and the implications of intense lipolysis on the health and performance of transition dairy cows.

Dr. Lorraine Sordillo

Dr. Lorraine Sordillo

Dr. Lorraine Sordillo earned her PhD in Immunology from Louisiana State University, Baton Rouge in 1987. She was a research scientist in the immunology group at the Vaccine and Infectious Disease Organization in Saskatoon Canada from 1987-1992. Her academic career began at the Pennsylvania State University and lasted from 1992-2004. She is currently a faculty member at Michigan State University where she is the first person to hold the Meadow Brook Chair position in Farm Animal Health and Well Being in the College of Veterinary Medicine. Sordillo’s primary research has focused on developing solutions to control mastitis dairy cattle by investigating the interaction between nutrition and immunology during times of increased susceptibility to disease. Her research has resulted in 5 U.S. patents aimed at mastitis therapy and control. Lorraine has written more than 100 peer-reviewed articles in scientific journals in addition to numerous chapters in books, proceedings articles and monographs. She has garnered more than $11 million in funds to help support her program from industry and various federal funding agencies including the USDA and National Institutes of Health. She is often asked to speak at national and international meetings relating to dairy cattle health. Lorraine has served as the primary advisor to 30 graduate students and served on the advisory committees of many more. She also has served on many national committees and has received several national awards for her research on mastitis prevention and control.

Phil Durst

Phil Durst

Phil Durst is a field-based MSU Senior Extension Dairy & Beef Educator with emphasis on cattle health. He earned his MS from Penn State and a BS in Chemistry from Philadelphia College of Pharmacy & Science. He worked with Penn State Cooperative Extension for more than 10 years before moving to Michigan to take a position with Michigan State University Extension. He is an Extension affiliate of the MSU College of Veterinary Medicine. Durst is certified as a Professional Animal Scientist with the American Registry of Professional Animal Scientists and is a member of the TB Committee of the United States Animal Heath Association. He works with producers and state and federal officials on bovine TB issues, has previously collaborated and worked with producers on the MI Johne’s Disease Control Demonstration Project. Durst is a co-PI on a project employing employee feedback for improved management that has shed light on deficiencies in managing employees that can impact their everyday performance in cattle health and care management.

Stan Moore

Stan Moore

Stan Moore earned his B.D. and M.S. degrees at Michigan State University. He is the MSU Extension Educator for dairy in Northwest Lower Michigan & Eastern UP (including the counties of Antrim, Benzie, Charlevoix, Cheboygan, Emmet, Grand Traverse, Kalkaska, Leelanau, Chippewa, Lucem and Mackinac), as well as providing coverage for Jackson, Hillsdale, and Lenawee. He offers a variety of educational programs in northwest lower Michigan and the eastern Upper Peninsula of Michigan. Moore’s special areas of interest include: labor management, nutrition, forage production, and canola production and use on dairy farms. dot4

Dr. John Kayitsinga

Dr. John Kayitsinga

Dr. Jean Kayitsinga is a Visiting Assistant Professor and social demographer at the Julian Samora Research Institute (JSRI), University Outreach and Engagement. He received his Ph.D. in sociology from Michigan State University. His areas of specialization include rural sociology, sociology of families, demography, research methods, and statistical methodologies. His current research focuses on the social environmental aspects of childhood obesity and on social inequalities in high school students’ academic achievement. dot4

Christian Ramirez

Christian Ramirez

Christian Ramirez is a doctoral student with the Chicano/Latino Studies Program and the Department of Sociology at Michigan State University. His research interests center on the intersection of race, ethnicity and identity. More specifically, his interests are concerned with the emerging ‘new majority’ comprised by people of color in the United States and how Mexican descendants challenge the historical binary analysis of White and Black relations. dot4

William Escalante

William Escalante

William Escalante is a third-year doctoral student in the Sociology Department at Michigan State University. His current work examines Día de Los Muertos celebrations in the Midwest region of the United States, addressing the question of how human beings reaffirm their cultural identity in new geographic locations. Conceptually, Mr. Escalante is interested in culture, religion, migration, race, and ethnicity in the United States and México. dot4

Bonnie Bucqueroux

Bonnie Bucqueroux

Bonnie Bucqueroux serves as the multimedia and social media outreach coordinator for the project. Bucqueroux teaches journalism at Michigan State University’s School of Journalism. She was managing editor for Michigan Farmer magazine and earned a National Magazine Award in 1986 with Farm Journal. She authored or co-authored four books and is considered a digital pioneer. Bucqueroux created her first website in 1996 and had the first campaign blog of anyone running for Congress. She has created online curriculum and training for police, journalists and victim advocates, farmers market managers and public relations professionals in Saudi Arabia. She has produced 625 videos for YouTube that have attracted more than 1.9 view and 999 subscribers. dot4


Pennsylvania State University

Dr. Ernest Hovingh

Dr. Ernest Hovingh

Dr. Ernest Hovingh earned his veterinary degree from the Ontario Veterinary College (University of Guelph, Canada) in 1990. He was in mixed animal practice for a few years until embarking on a food animal residency and PhD (Epidemiology) at the Atlantic Veterinary College in eastern Canada. He then spent a few years teaching and doing extension work at the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine. Since 2004 he has been a field investigator, researcher, dairy extension veterinarian and part-time lecturer in the Department of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences at Pennsylvania State University. His interests include many areas of dairy cattle health and productivity – but especially mastitis, hoof health, Johne´s disease, cow comfort, and animal welfare.”

Dr. David R. Wolfgang

Dr. David R. Wolfgang

Dr. David R. Wolgang, a native of central Pennsylvania, was a 1982 graduate of the University of Pennsylvania School of Veterinary Medicine. He served in mixed animal private practice in Shippensburg, PA, from 1982 through June 1993, and in Warriors Mark, PA, from June 1993 through October 1995. Both practices had an emphasis on large animals. Since October 1995, Dr. Wolfgang has been Director of Field Investigations and Extension Veterinarian in the Department of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences at Penn State. He has been active in local and state veterinary organizations, serving as president of the Pennsylvania State Veterinary Medical Association (PVMA) in 2006. He was chair of the National Mastitis Council-Residue Avoidance Committee and, from 2004 through 2009, he was chair of the Continuing Education Committee for PVMA. Dr. Wolfgang also was director for the past four Dairy Production Medicine (DPM) certificate programs (offered as a joint CE program by Penn State and the University of Pennsylvania). He is currently on the PA State Board of Veterinary Medicine. His primary professional emphasis includes: cost effective preventative health and diagnostic programs for livestock species, farm food safety, animal well-being, and continuing education programs for veterinarians.

Dr. Rama Radakhrisna

Dr. Rama Radhakhrisna

Dr. Rama Radhakrishna is a professor and extension specialist of the Department of Agricultural Economics, Sociology and Education at Penn State. Rama received his B.S. and M.S. degrees in agricultural sciences from the University of Agricultural Sciences, Bangalore (UAS), India and his Ph.D. in agricultural education (with an emphasis in Extension education) from Penn State. Rama teaches undergraduate and graduate level courses in program development, program evaluation, and research methods. His extension specialty is in the area of program development and evaluation. He has published over 100 refereed journal articles in 15 different journals and presented over 250 refereed papers/posters/carousels in state, regional and international conferences. In addition, Rama has worked with over 60 graduate students at Penn State either as a chair or member of doctoral/masters committees. Rama is the past Editor of the Journal of Agricultural Education and has served/s on editorial review boards of four journals – Journal of Extension, NACTA Journal, Journal of Career and Technical Education Research, and International Journal of Agricultural and Extension Education. Rama has received several teaching awards: the NACTA Eastern Region Outstanding Teacher Award; Distinguished Research Award from the American Association for Agricultural Education (AAAE); the USDA Teaching Award for Food and Agricultural Sciences Excellence in College and University Awards Program: A Community of Scholars Honoring Excellence; the 2011 Distinguished Teaching Award from AAAE; 2009 Sustained Extension Evaluation Award from the American Evaluation Association; and a three-time recipient of the Community of Teaching Excellence Award from the College of Agricultural Sciences, Penn State. In 2010, Rama completed his Fulbright Fellowship at UAS, Bangalore, India.


Mississippi State University

Dr. Rebecca Schewe

Dr. Rebecca Schewe

Dr. Rebecca L. Schewe, Ph.D., is an Assistant Professor of Sociology at Syracuse University and a Senior Research Associate in the Center for Policy Research. She received her Ph.D. in Sociology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2011 and an M.S. in Rural Sociology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 2006. She completed postdoctoral training at Michigan State University and previously held a faculty position at Mississippi State University. Dr. Schewe specializes in rural sociology, particularly the sociology of food and agriculture and rural communities. Dr. Schewe has extensive research experience studying food and agriculture, including time as a visiting researcher at the University of Otago, New Zealand, and Michigan State University. Dr. Schewe is the first author of a recently published book on community well-being in rural northern Wisconsin and is the author of several book chapters and articles concerning rural communities and the sociology of food and agriculture.


Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University

Dr. Ray Mobley

Dr. Ray Mobley

Dr. Ray Mobley is a full professor and Director of Animal Health/Veterinary Services at FAMU. Dr. Mobley is licensed to practice veterinary medicine in Florida and is a diplomate of the American College of Veterinary Preventive Medicine. Dr. Mobley was born and raised in Madison, Florida, and graduated from Madison County Training School in 1967. He received his B.S. degree in animal science from FAMU, the D.V.M. from Tuskegee, and the M.P.H. from Tulane. While a student at FAMU he was chosen to Who’s Who among Students on American Colleges and Campuses. He is married to Donna Humes Mobley, and they have three children, four granddaughters and seven godchildren. Dr. Mobley is a retired L.T.C., having served in the US Army Veterinary Corps for 22 years. His military awards include the Legion of Merit, the Joint Services Meritorious Service award, the Army Meritorious Service award, the Army Commendation Medal, and he was inducted into the Order of Military Medical Merit. He is a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Alpha Kappa Mu National Honor Society, Southside Rotary Club, Tallahassee, and a former member of Scabbards and Blades. His university awards include the Superior Accomplishment award and Extension and Outreach Excellence Awards.