Mike Bodenhausen, who has served as executive director of the Kansas Dairy Commission and Kansas Dairy Association for the past eight years, is retiring this month.
On March 15, his colleagues honored him with the 2014 Dairy Leader of the Year Award, recognizing his service to the organizations and the industry over a lifetime.
A portrait of Bodenhausen and a biography of his achievements will be hung in Call Hall, the main Dairy Science classroom building at Kansas State University, along with the portraits of past Leaders of the Year since 1952.
In accepting the award, Bodenhausen said it is a humbling honor to be recognized with the other leaders who photos hang there.
"I remember walking that hall looking at those pictures and being filled with awe of people like Ivan Strickler (the 1974 Diary Leader of the Year)," he said. "It is my hope that someday someone walking past my picture will stop and say 'he was someone who was helpful to me.' That would be what I would call success."
Among the many accomplishments his fellow dairymen noted in choosing Bodenhausen for this year's award are program director and classifier for the Holstein Association in 42 states and 3 foreign lands from 1975 to 1981; representing Kansas numerous times as a delegate to the National Holstein Convention; performing duties as co-chair of the junior program for the National Holstein Convention held in Wichita in 1982 and for serving many years with the Kansas Holstein Association as a member, on the board of directors and as president in 1992 and 1993.
Bodenhausen has also served many years on the Dairy Farmers of America Resolution committee, judged multiple 4-H dairy shows, conducted a dairy project for 13 years as a youth in 4-H and FFA and as State Dairy Proficiency awardee in FFA.
Read more about the award to Bodenhausen and other events at the annual Kansas Dairy Association meeting in your April edition of Kansas Farmer.