Speakers 2017

Greg Peterson of the Peterson Farm Brothers

Photo of Greg Peterson

Greg Peterson is a 2013 graduate of Kansas State University where he majored in Agricultural Communications and Journalism. He grew up and still works on a family farm near Assaria, KS with his parents, 2 brothers, and sister. He has always enjoyed working on the farm and being an advocate for agriculture. Greg and his brothers create YouTube videos about farming that together have received over 40 million views. The videos have given Greg and his brothers many opportunities around the country and the world to talk about agriculture and he is passionate about the future of the industry.




Photo of Ron Gill

Ron Gill

Dr. Ron Gill is professor and Extension livestock specialist for Texas A&M AgriLife Extension and also currently serves as Associate Department Head and Program Leader for Extension within the Animal Science Department at Texas A&M University.

Gill provides leadership in Extension programming related to animal well-being, stockmanship and low-stress livestock handling and helped develop the Stockmanship and Stewardship program he now delivers through collaboration with NCBA and the National BQA program. He also assists in providing leadership to statewide and national programming efforts for Beef Safety and Quality Assurance.

Gill serves on the Cattle Health and Well-Being Committee for the National Cattleman’s Beef Association and to also serves on NCBA’s Animal Welfare Advisory Group.

Photo of Victor CorteseVictor Cortese

Vic graduated from Michigan State University with his bachelors and doctorate.  He received his doctorate in veterinary medicine in 1980.  He then entered a predominantly dairy practice in Wisconsin where he also held a non-tenured adjunct professor position with the University of Wisconsin-Madison, College of Veterinary Medicine.  In 1989 he joined Diamond Scientific in their technical services department where he was promoted to director of veterinary operations.  In June of 1990 he moved to SmithKline Beech Animal Health (previously Pfizer Animal Health, now Zoetis) as a senior technical services veterinarian, with his main emphasis on dairy and its allied sectors.  He currently holds the title of Director Technical Services—Cattle Immunology.  His responsibility is 75% North American and 25% international.  He has many publications on viral infections, immunology, neonatal immunology and young dairy calf management, several textbook chapters and guest lectures at many veterinary and university meetings including the American Association of Bovine Practitioners/World Buiatrics Congress and the AVMA.  He received his diplomat status to American Board of Veterinary Practitioners (Dairy Practice Specialty) in 1995.   In September 1997, at the American Association of Bovine Practitioners Conference in Montreal, he received the AABP’s Award for Excellence.  In 1999, he successfully completed his Ph.D. in Microbiology from the Western College of Veterinary Medicine, University of Saskatchewan.  In 2013, Bovine Veterinarian Magazine selected Dr. Cortese as one of the twenty most influential cattle veterinarians in the United States.

Emily Yeiser Stepp

Photo of Emily Yeiser-SteppEmily Yeiser Stepp grew up just outside of Annapolis, Maryland. She began her involvement in the dairy industry through the 4-H dairy leasing program where she was able to “borrow” a calf from a local dairy farm to show at local, county and state fairs. Yeiser Stepp was involved in Maryland 4-H and the leasing program for over 10 years and then went on to pursue a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Animal Science with a minor in Agribusiness Management from Penn State University.

At Penn State, she was an active member of the Dairy Science Club, member of the collegiate dairy judging team, a sister of Alpha Zeta Fraternity and was President of the American Dairy Science Association-Student Affiliate Division. Upon graduation from Penn State, Emily worked for ABS Global Inc. as their Young Sire Program Specialist in the Mid-Atlantic region.  She then went on to attend graduate school at Virginia Tech and in 2011, obtained her Master’s of Science degree in Dairy Science. Her research was focused on how mastitis and metabolic diseases impact on dairy cow behavior.

Yeiser Stepp served as the Dairy Initiatives Manager for the Center for Dairy Excellence in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania for 4 ½ years. In this role, she was responsible for the execution of on-farm resource programs and the development and outreach to the industry’s next generation through the Center’s Foundation. Immediately prior to her role with the FARM Animal Care Program, she served as the Dairy and Beef Extension Coordinator at the University of Maryland.

Emily and her family maintain a small herd of 25 registered Holsteins and Brown Swiss under the Spots-Pride prefix, that are housed at Palmyra Farm in Maryland. Emily and her husband currently reside in Northern Virginia.

Kory Stalsberg

Photo of Kory Stalsberg

Kory Stalsberg serves both Grant and Lafayette Counties as the Dairy and Livestock Agriculture Agent. His current programs focus on dairy modernization, beef cattle management and young/beginning farmers. Kory grew up on a dairy and beef farm in southwest Wisconsin and earned his BS in Agriculture Education at UW-Platteville and his MS from UW-Lacrosse. Prior to working with UW Extension, he taught high school agriculture for 9 years. Kory resides in Fennimore, WI with his wife and 2 children.