On May 4, Organic Valley announced the creation of a new college award named in honor of alumna Louise Hemstead, Meat and Animal Science BS’82, acknowledging Hemstead’s pioneering work in dairy science and dairy business. The Louise Hemstead Leadership Award will be given annually to a CALS faculty or staff member. Hemstead, a member of the college’s Board of Visitors, served as the Chief Operating Officer for Organic Valley for nearly 25 years.

Hemstead died on May 15 at the age of 57 after battling illness. She was present at the event in Cashton where the award was announced.

Dean Kate VandenBosch said, “Louise has been such an inspiration to a whole generation of agriculture educators, business people, and farmers. This award will be a tremendous honor for a staff or faculty member every year.”

Learn more about Hemstead’s life by reading the obituary from the Wisconsin State Journal.

Those who wish to make a gift to the new award in Louise’s honor may send a check made payable to UW Foundation and reference the Louise Hemstead Leadership Award. Send the check to:

UW Foundation
U.S. Bank Lockbox
Box 78807
Milwaukee, WI 53278-0807

Online gifts may be made at

Organic Valley is providing seed funding for the endowed award. In 2015, the company also created an endowed chair in organic plant breeding co-funded by Clif Bar & Company.