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Kristin Olson Selected as 66th Alice in Dairyland
May 11, 2013

A Dane County woman has been crowned as Wisconsin’s 66th Alice in Dairyland. Kristin (Natzke) Olson of Windsor was selected for the title Friday night at the Endries Performing Arts Center in Brillion  during a finale program hosted by Calumet County.

Olson is currently the dairy advertising coordinator at Accelerated Genetics in Baraboo. A native of the Fond du Lac area, Kristin grew up showing dairy cattle with her family’s Holstein and Jersey farm. She is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where she majored in life sciences communications.

While in school, Olson held leadership roles in the Association of Women in Agriculture, Badger Dairy Club and the National Agri-Marketing Association. She was the Fond du Lac County Fairest of the  Fair in 2007. And in 2009, Kristin was honored as the Wisconsin Holstein Outstanding Girl and was a National Holstein Distinguished Junior Member Semi-Finalist.

“Having been born into Wisconsin’s agricultural industry, I have truly been blessed,” Olson after her name was called. “It is an honor to share my knowledge of agriculture with others, in hopes that they become more aware of the impact that this $59 billion industry has on their daily lives.”

Other finalists in the running during the competition were Beth Babcock, Wisconsin Dells; Marie Mahaney, Milwaukee; and Tammy Wiedenbeck, Lancaster. Green Bay Farm Broadcaster Mike Austin of  WTAQ Radio served as master of ceremonies.

Meanwhile, Out-Going Alice, Rochelle Ripp of Lodi, said the opportunity of serving as ‘Alice’ has been an honor of a lifetime.

“As I reflect on my year, I will be forever grateful for the opportunity to have met and shared the positive impact of agriculture with thousands of people at the hundreds of events I have attended all in one  incredible year,” Rochelle said. “There are countless memories that I will cherish for a lifetime.  I look forward to a lifelong career of promoting and giving back to this amazing agriculture community, where  my roots run deep.”

And before giving up her title, Ripp presented the ‘2013 Friend of Alice Award’ to Diana Normand of WSAW-TV in Wausau.

Also in the crowd on Friday were some former Alices, including: Mary Ellen (Jenks) Jordal (1953-54), Laura (Oldenberg) Drendel (1978-79), Dorothy Farrell (1982-83), Angela (Corbin) Tuthill (1993-94),  Jolynne (Nagel) Schroepher (1995-96), Courtney (Ott) Booth (1997-98), Jennifer (Hasler) Meyer (1998-99), Sheri (Holt) Hicken (2001-02), Natalie (Parmentier) Killion (2003-04), Betsy Francoeur  (2004-05), Jill Makovec (2007-08) Ashley (Huibregtse) Andre (2008-09), Cheryl O’Brien (2009-10), Christine Lindner (2010-11), and Katie Wirkus (2011-12).

Kristin officially begins her duties as Alice on June 3. Until then, Rochelle will continue to make appearances at various events as her successor goes through a brief training process.

Calumet County is a major ag employer, as nearly 4,100 people work in the industry–about 19-percent of the area’s overall workforce. Agriculture accounts for $1.17 billions in total business for the county  each year.

Next year, the Alice in Dairyland finals will be held in Clark County on May 15-17, 2014.

Source: Wisconsin Ag Connection



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