Alan Koepke has never been a practicing engineer, but that hasn’t prevented him from utilizing the engineering skills he developed at CALS. In fact, as a partner in Koepke Farms, Inc. near Oconomowoc, Koepke says that using his engineering skills to design buildings, repair farm machinery and implement soil drainage systems has been his favorite part of farming. The 320-cow dairy also boasts an impressive record of conservation, winning the Wisconsin Leopold Conservation Award last year in part for their efforts to reduce soil erosion through no-tillage cropping systems. “Conservation has always been used on our farm,” Koepke says. “I took a soils class taught by professor Art Peterson that really inspired me in soil conservation.” Along the way, Koepke also has made an impact on the dairy industry. He helped found the Professional Dairy Producers of Wisconsin and has served as a past president of the Wisconsin Holstein Association. Alan, along with his brothers, Jim and David, and a nephew, John, were named World Dairy Expo Dairymen of the Year in 2011.
Wisconsin's Magazine for the Life Sciences