Four Dairy Professionals Join Center for Dairy Excellence and Foundation Board of Directors

Brubaker, Kull, Lesher and Potts Recently Filled Open Board Positions

The Center for Dairy Excellence and Dairy Excellence Foundation recently welcomed four dairy professionals to the organizations’ Board of Directors. The Center for Dairy Excellence Board of Directors guide the work of the non-profit 501c6 organization which fosters collaboration across the industry and provides resources to strengthen Pennsylvania dairy farms. The Dairy Excellence Foundation Board of Directors guide the work of the 501c3 charitable organization focused on cultivating and empowering dairy’s next generation.

Tony Brubaker, a dairy producer from Mount Joy, Pa., was elected to the Center for Dairy Excellence Board during the December 2019 Board meeting. Brubaker filled an open position, which was vacated by Don Risser from Bainbridge, Pa. who reached the two-consecutive term maximum set by the organization’s bylaws.

“I was interested in being part of the Center’s Board because I’ve seen the work the Center does. It’s a critical organization to Pennsylvania’s dairy industry, so I feel like it’s really worthwhile to spend time as a Board member,” Brubaker said.

Brubaker is a partner at Brubaker Farms, LLC in Mount Joy, Pa. with his brother Mike. Along with the dairy, they grow chickens for Tyson Foods. Tony also serves on the Lancaster DHIA Board of Directors and East Donegal Township Zoning Board. He has experience serving as a member of the Board of Directors for the Lancaster County Farm Bureau and PA Animal Health Commission, as well as two years of experience as president of the Professional Dairy Managers of Pennsylvania (PDMP).

The Center also welcomed Jody Kull, DVM to the Board of Directors to fill a new position designated for a veterinarian who has experience consulting dairy clients.

“I am grateful for the opportunity to serve on the Center for Dairy Excellence Board of Directors. I hope I can bring a different perspective as a practicing veterinarian in the industry for 16 years,” said Kull. “I’m looking forward to supporting producers, promoting our state’s dairy industry, and planning for the future of Pennsylvania dairy.”

Dr. Kull grew up on a dairy farm in Chester County and received her bachelor’s degree in animal bioscience from The Pennsylvania State University before receiving her DVM at the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine at Virginia Tech in 2004. She worked for a mixed veterinary practice in Danville before purchasing the large animal portion of the business and starting Valley Mobile Veterinary Services in 2008, which focuses solely on food animal medicine in a seven-county area.

The Center’s Board of Directors must agree to serve a three-year term and may be re-elected for an additional term. The Board was developed to represent multiple aspects of the dairy industry, with seats for dairy farmers, allied industry professionals, marketing cooperative employees, veterinarians, retail representatives, processor representatives, and members from the Pennsylvania General Assembly.

The two new members elected to the Dairy Excellence Foundation’s Board of Directors include Jaylene Lesher and Justin Potts. They filled two open positions vacated by Lolly Lesher of Bernville, Pa. and Gary Heim of Mechanicsburg, Pa. who completed their terms.

“I am humbled and honored to be selected to serve as a Dairy Excellence Foundation Board member,” said Potts. “I have personally benefited from the generosity of the dairy industry, and to be able to serve on a Board that gives others these same opportunities is very meaningful.”

Potts served as a Dairy Business Advisor for Land O’Lakes, Inc. for the past five years and recently became the National Manager of FARM Animal Care for Land O’Lakes. He has experience managing donations, industry relations, and customer relationships. He also serves as the national team project leader for the Land O’Lakes base program. Potts has been instrumental in helping to secure increased support for the Foundation and advocating for many of the organization’s programs.

Jaylene Lesher is a 2016 graduate of The Pennsylvania State University with a major in animal science and minor in agribusiness management. Through the Foundation’s on-farm internship program, Lesher interned at Rosy-Lane Holsteins, LLC where she gained hands-on management experience in Wisconsin. She was also a benefactor of the Foundation’s scholarship program.

“The Foundation’s on-farm internship program, Student Leadership scholarship, and Young Professionals scholarship are three activities I was fortunate to participate in,” Lesher said. “I hope to continue advocating and fundraising for the Foundation while serving on the Board of Directors.” 

Lesher serves as the herdsman for her family farm, Way-Har Farms in Bernville, Pa. She carries out herd health protocols, works with farm nutritionists, manages the reproduction programs, and manages farm employees. She is working to improve the herd’s production and hopes to expand the wholesale business.

More information about the organizations’ Board of Directors can be found at