It’s been a big week for Zoey Brooks. The Waupaca native was selected as Wisconsin’s 67th Alice in Dairyland and graduated from the UW-Madison with a degree in animal science. As Alice, Brooks will work as a communications professional for the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection (DATCP). Her job will be to promote Wisconsin agriculture and to teach the public about the importance of agriculture in Wisconsin.
“I am thrilled to be chosen as Alice in Dairyland,” Brooks said. “As Alice, I will work to promote and protect Wisconsin’s vital agriculture industry and to motivate others to make their own unique connections to Wisconsin agriculture.”
As a member of the sixth generation on her family’s dairy and grain farm, she looks forward to growing the business in the future.
Brooks served as Dane County Farm Bureau’s Ag in the Classroom coordinator and as a director at-large for her Collegiate Farm Bureau. She has held internships with the Food Export Association of the Midwest and with UW-Extension.
Brooks was selected at the culmination of a three-day Finals event in Clark County. The event included agribusiness tours, speeches, a public question-and-answer session and media interviews. The other finalists were Allyson Binversie of Manitowoc, Katie Dogs of Theresa, Kristin Klossner of New Glarus, Melissa Ploeckelman of Stetsonville and Whitney Rathke of Fredonia.
Brooks will start working as Alice on June 2. She will succeed 66th Alice in Dairyland Kristin Olson. Brooks will travel about 40,000 miles during her year as Alice speaking at events and giving media interviews. She will present lessons in more than 100 Wisconsin classrooms in partnership with the Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board.
A number of Wisconsin organizations contribute to make Alice in Dairyland visible and recognizable to the public. For example, Brooks will wear and keep a custom mink garment to promote Wisconsin’s fur industry courtesy of the Kettle Moraine Mink Breeders Association. She will drive an E-85 flex-fuel Chevrolet Tahoe from the Wisconsin Corn Growers Association to promote the state’s ethanol industry. While working, Brooks will wear a 14-carat gold and platinum brooch or tiara featuring amethysts and citrines, gems indigenous to Wisconsin. The tiara and brooch are courtesy of the Wisconsin Jewelers Association. Many other Wisconsin organizations support the Alice in Dairyland program by funding media campaigns.