Wisconsin Agricultural Tourism Association Inc.

Board of Directors

Sheila Everhart

Sheila Everhart
(Everhart Family Farms - Janesville, WI)

PRESIDENT
Sheila Everhart and her husband Dennis reside in Janesville Township, Rock County and have two sons: Michael and Mathew and four grandchildren. Dennis and Mathew operate Everhart Farms where they raise beef cattle, corn and soybeans. Sheila loves helping students and her grandchildren learn about farming and career opportunities in agriculture. Sheila chairs the Ag in the Classroom Initiatives, Annual Meeting Recognition & Banquet, Scholarships and Fair Food Stand subcommittees. Sheila is also on the Executive Board of The Janesville Park City Chapter of American Business Women's Association (ABWA). She is the chapter Secretary and chairs the Public Relations and Professional Development subcommittees. Sheila has worked 27 years as a Teacher and Principal for school districts in Alaska and Wisconsin. She has earned a bachelor's degree from UW-Whitewater and a master's degree from UW-Madison. "I am here to be the change I wish to see in the world, choosing to: learn well and do well for others, extending myself in service, treating others with respect, inspiring and influencing others to take action by using and being thankful for my GOD given talents and skills as an instructional leader, teacher, coach, mentor and advocate."

John Govin

John Govin
(Govin's Farm - Menomonie, WI)

VICE PRESIDENT
Govin's is located East of Menomonie between I94 and Hwy 12/29. We are a small family farm, owned by John and Julie Govin along with our sons, Kyle and Clayton. Our family enjoys sharing our farm with your family. When you buy products from our farm, you can be assured that you are getting the highest quality available from a family you can trust and get to know. We raise a wide variety of products for you to choose from. Govin's offers 6 acres of Strawberries both U-Pick and Pre-picked, Lamb, by the cut or custom cut, and our all natural Chickens. In the fall we have our 11 acre corn Maze along with out 3 acres of pumpkins and lots of fun fall activities You can also bring the family out in the spring to enjoy see and holding all the baby animals in our Lambing Barn. Here at Govin's we are a back to the basics type farm. We raise our animals the way our ancestors raised animals. All of our animals are pasture raised on our 55 acres of grass. We raise the animals naturally and free of hormones and antibiotic's.

David Muehl, CPA

David Muehl, CPA
(Badger Farms, LLC)

TREASURER
Dave is a Madison, WI native. He received his BS in Business, majors in Accounting and Risk Management and Insurance from the Univ. of WI, Madison, in 1975. Dave is a Certified Public Accountant and is a partner at Wegner LLP, an accounting firm with four Wisconsin offices. He is a past Co-chair of the Agriculture committee for WICPA and is co-owner of Badger Farms, LLC, which is a 530 acre farm, growing marsh hay for other agriculture producers and construction industry, and agri-tourism specialty event venue specializing in weddings and other life event celebrations. Dave is also a lake developer of a 141 acre site near Reedsburg, WI. He is a Director and officer of the Wisconsin Business Development Corp., Cottage Grove Chamber of Commerce, Deerfield Chamber of Commerce, Madison United Rugby and Wisconsin Agricultural Tourism Association. In addition he is also a member of the Town of Cottage Grove Plan Commission and their Long Range Planning Committee as well as a Member of Rotary, USA Water Ski, WI Water Ski Federation.

Sylvia Burgos Toftness

Sylvia Burgos Toftness
(Bull Brook Keep - Clear Lake, WI)

At Bull Brook Keep, Dave and Sylvia breed, raise and sell grass-fed-finished beef on MOSA-certified organic pastures and hayfield. They welcome visitors nearly every week of the year. Sylvia hosts a Saturday monring broadcast, Deep Roots Radio, from the studios of WPCA Radio, 93.1FM, Amery, WI. She also teaches baking classes and hosts high teas.

Shelly Mayer

Shelly Mayer
(Folk Song Farm - Slinger, WI)

For our family, Folk Song Farm isn't just a place - it's where heaven touches earth. For seven generations, the Mauer/Mayer family has stored the crops in the barn. They've reflected and relied on their relationship with God for strength to raise, train and nourish their families. A lot of hard work, laughter and countless great memories transpired at The Barn. And now, we are delighted to open up the beauty and the history of The Barn at Folk Song Farm to others who appreciate the splendor, family tradition, commitment to agriculture and education The Barn embodies. At Folk Song Farm the welcome mat is out to neighbors, community, schools and families ... not just for life's personal celebrations but also for corporate functions and educational opportunities that explore what agri-tourism has to offer.

Stephen Nagy

Stephen Nagy
(Homestead Meadows - Appleton, WI)

Homestead Meadows is an event venue on a 55 acre farm in Greenville's historic Yellowstone Trail corridor. We have hosted over 6,000 groups since 1983, and are considered to be one of NAE Wisconsin's premier wedding venues.

Erin O'Toole

Erin O'Toole
(Pagel's Ponderosa Dairy LLC - Kewaunee, WI)

From cow to cheese is our motto at Pagel's Ponderosa Dairy! come see the cows, visit our on-site cheese production facility and of course, taste a squeaky fresh cheese curd. Pagel's Ponderosa Dairy is the largest single family owned dairy in Wisconsin. The farm was established back in 1946 when John Pagels father Carl Pagel borrowed the money from a neighbor to buy the farm. Since then the farm has stayed in the family and is thriving with many generations to come! Take a tour of the Ponderosa and learn all about the latest innovations in milk production (735 - 750 cows are milked per hour!) and alternative energies. Watch the milk from our cows go to our cheese production plant to create a variety of cheeses. Group Friendly (Motorcoach) destination.

Mary Telfer

Mary Telfer
(Busy Barns Adventure Farm LLC)

Ag education and fun for families, corn maze, farm animals, seasonal events. At our farm you can interact with the animals, play in the corn and straw, sit on the antique tractors, take in a puppet show, scurry down the rabbit hole slide, sway on the pony swings, conquer the trivia corn maze, or select the perfect pumpkin. Birthday parties and school field trips welcome. The Gathering Barn at Busy Barns Adventure Farm hosts amazing romantic rustic farm wedding and receptions. Call to tour the Gathering Barn today to book your unique rustic farm wedding complete with a petting zoo for your guests. Email us at info@thegatheringbarn.com, or visit www.thegatheringbarn.com for more information. Amazing adventures at Busy Barns Adventure Farm!

Danielle Ziegler, CMP, CVT

Danielle Ziegler, CMP, CVT
(Red Dog Resources, LLC & Dane County Fair - Madison, WI)

Danielle Ziegler wears a lot of hats. She is the President & CEO of Red Dog Resources, LLC, an agricultural events management company and the General Manager of the Dane County Fair. She has been in the meetings industry for over 20 years and is a Certified Meeting Professional (CMP) and Certified Veterinary Technician (CVT). Prior to her current roles, Danielle worked at the local convention and visitors bureau selling the city of Madison to national and regional agricultural associations. This position, as well as her career as an association meeting planner and a CVT at the University of Wisconsin-Madison Veterinary Care, is where she found her love of all things agriculture. Danielle has also held board positions for the Meeting Professionals International (MPI)-Wisconsin Chapter, and currently resides in Oregon, WI with her husband and "four-legged" kids.

Advisors

Lois Federman

Lois Federman
(Director of Something Special from WI with DATCP)

Lois Federman is a Senior Agricultural Marketing Specialist with the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection in Madison, Wisconsin. She directs the Something Special from Wisconsin - a branded marketing program, which was founded in 1983 to assist Wisconsin companies increase their brand presence locally, regionally and nationally. Currently over 500 Wisconsin companies are program members. Lois and her brother are fourth generation co-owners/operators of their family's homestead farm south of Mineral Point, WI. Together they direct-market meat to consumers through CSA's, Farmers' Markets, restaurants and grocery stores. Prior to returning to her agricultural roots, her career spanned 20 plus years traveling the world for the internationally known apparel company, Lands' End, as director of product development and quality control for the men's, women's and kids knit apparel lines and the business outfitters division.

Drew Nussbaum

Drew Nussbaum
(Department of Tourism)

Drew joined the Wisconsin Department of Tourism in 2012, after having spent his entire professional career in hospitality, marketing, and tourism. His focus with companies and organizations has always been to grow their customer service effectiveness, a passion that began with his first restaurant job in 1984. Drew refers to this as "Northern Hospitality". Tourism in Wisconsin is a $20 billion industry, and has grown 40% since 2011. He loves traveling the state meeting with folks and helping them get the word out about all the great things there are to see and do in Wisconsin. Having worked with various regional and statewide collaboration efforts, Drew enjoys bringing organizations together to share ideas and resources. Tourism is a large part of economic development in Wisconsin, and the visitor's experience here is paramount.

Marsha Salzwedel

Marsha Salzwedel
(Marshfield Clinic - National Farm Medicine Center)

Marsha grew up on a farm and is still involved today in the family business - growing Christmas trees, selling wreathes, maple syrup, and timber. She is also the Agritourism Safety Specialist at the National Children's Center for Rural and Agricultural Health and Safety (part of the National Farm Medicine Center) in Marshfield, Wisconsin. Marsha led the development of the interactive website "Integrating Safety into Agritourism" and is currently leading the team that is updating the agritourism safety materials. She has given presentations and workshops on agritourism safety at state, regional, national and international meetings. Marsha has a Master's Degree in Human & Community Resources from the University of Wisconsin Steven's Point.

Trisha Wagner

Trisha Wagner
(UW-Extension - Jackson County)

Trisha Wagner has served as the UW-Extension Jackson County Agriculture Educator since 2008. Trisha's primary areas of programming for the needs of her clientele are: farm risk management, soils and nutrient management and sustainable food systems. Trisha has been active in the Dairy and FARM Teams statewide and served in leadership roles for these teams. She has authored several factsheets, bulletins, and presentations. Her translation of the skid steer safety training DVD into Spanish has extended the reach of Extension to Hispanic audiences. She has enabled Spanish-speaking clientele to attend programs in dairy reproduction, risk management, and the Wisconsin Farm and Industry short course through her translations. Trisha has contributed to the University knowledge base through her cooperation in a number of on-farm research projects in integrated pest management, nutrient management, and dairy management.