2013 July Seedstock EDGE - page 10

Mike Paul
CEO, National Swine Registry
NSR Editorial
Open Mike
Unsung heroes
After the 25
World Pork Expo, I
reflected on what contributed to the
success and growth of this event. Starting
in 1980, the Iowa Hampshire Breeders
Association Board of Directors, made a
somewhat unpopular decision to hold an
off-season breeding show and sale known
as the Midwest Hampshire Meat Hog
Conference at the Iowa State Fairgrounds
in Des Moines, Iowa. e group of
men responsible for creating the event
included: Earl Cain, Jerry Brink, Tim
Anderson, Charlie Baas, Marlyn Paul,
Verle McGraw, A.W. Martin, Don Wal-
lace, Robert Warrick, Dick Swenson, and
the past HSR executive, Bob Naylor. e
Iowa Hampshire membership felt this
event was an opportunity for Hamp-
shire breeders across the nation to come
together. Nearly 350 people partici-
pated in the type discussion and judging
contest at this inaugural event and more
than 100 head of Hampshires sold.
e United Duroc Swine Registry
became part of this event at the 3
nual Midwest Conference and the Spots
joined the 5
Midwest Conference. As
other breeds joined this event, new and
innovative ideas, such as the “Peoples’
Choice” and the “Tested Best Boar Sale,”
were incorporated into the conference.
Eight years after the inaugural event,
National Pork Producers Council
(NPPC) came to the breed associations
asking to couple the Midwest Confer-
ence with a national trade show for pork
producers, and the World Pork Expo was
born. e first Expo was held at the Iowa
State Fairgrounds, in 1988. A member of
To contact Mike, use your smartphone to scan the code to the left or email him at
the NPPC staff, Ernie Barnes was named
manager of the event. No one can appre-
ciate the hours Ernie spent on the phone
gathering up support to make this event
come together, from getting all the trade
show exhibitors into booth spaces, to
lining up different pork producer groups
to cook at the “Big Grill.” A former York-
shire fieldman and Landrace breed execu-
tive, Ernie worked with our purebred
breed shows and sales, as well, and we
can’t thank him enough for his efforts.
Due to the economic conditions in
the pork industry, by the early 2000s
the participation in the WPX was
dwindling, when the idea of incorpo-
rating a junior event was discussed.
In 2003, the first WPX Junior Na-
tional took place, and over the years,
the event has grown into one of the
premier junior shows in the country.
I want to thank all of the NSR
and NJSA staff for their contributions
that make this event come together.
Cally Hass, Torie Schwartz and the
NJSA intern, Gavin Livingston, spent
countless hours working to put the
junior portion together. Robin Lucas,
Lisa Kennedy, Rhonda Eller, Jessica
Goyette-Blankenship, Whitney Hosier
and pedigree intern, Amanda Oldfield,
worked many hours processing entries,
providing pedigrees for exhibitors, fax-
ing corrections and putting the show
and sale catalogs together. Adam Dian
developed the online entry forms. Brian
Arnold and his crew of Brian Anderson,
Ralph Doak, Michael Lackey and the
field staff intern, Blaine Evans, assisted
with everything from reading notches to
taking bids on Saturday. Katie Mau-
pin, Steve Weintraut and the market-
ing and communications intern, Jacee
May, promptly reported the results.
Dr. Justin Fix and Dr. Doug Newcom
contributed to the trade show with the
America’s Best Genetics booth, helping
to promote the use of purebred genetics
abroad. e NJSA Board of Directors
helped pen and check-in hogs, in addi-
tion to working all of the junior events.
ere are not enough words to express
my appreciation to the NSR and NJSA
team for their efforts during this monster
event. e staff and board went to bed
late and rose early each morning, yet they
worked hard each day. ey’re troopers!
I’d also like to thank everyone else
who helped this event come together.
Ryan Orrick, Jon Althaus and the Lake
Land judging team penned hogs in the
shows, manned the judging contest
and assisted with the sales on Saturday
– we couldn’t do it without them! Dr.
Shawn Nicholson and his crew did a
great job checking health papers. Doug
Fricke, Alicia Irlbeck, Neil Dierks and
Pat McGonegle of NPPC and Bryn
Jenssen and Dinah Peebles from the
National Pork Board offered count-
less support and assistance through-
out the week. Last but not least, my
brother, John Paul, needs to be thanked
for serving as my “gofer,” all week.
Please join me in thanking the often
unsung heroes of the World Pork Expo.
“Please join me in thanking the often
unsung heroes of the World Pork Expo.”
July 2013
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