University of Vermont

'Dip It' Was His License Plate...

Two Friends of the College Inducted into Vermont Agricultural Hall of Fame

The late Woody Pankey in the 1990s when his cattle mastitis research helped farmers deal with this common disease that is painful to cattle and expensive for farmers due to loss of milk production.

Roger Allbee and the late Joseph ‘Woody’ Pankey Jr., were among five Vermonters inducted into the Vermont Agricultural Hall of Fame at the Champlain Valley Fair on Aug. 29.

“We like to think that Allbee and Pankey’s strong ties to the University of Vermont contributed to their receiving their lifetime achievement awards, and it makes the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences proud to have worked closely with them,” remarked Tom Vogelmann, dean of the College.

The 2012 awardees: Pankey, Allbee, Stephen Woodard, Anne Burke and David Grimm, were honored at a luncheon attended by about 100 people, including two governors. The honorees join 44 others who have been recognized since 2003. The Hall of Fame is an entrance to the Champlain Valley Exposition’s Miller Building that is lined with black and white photographic portraits of award winners.

 

At the Milking Stanchion,

Pankey Raised the Bar on Cleanliness

When he was a UVM research professor, Woody Pankey became renowned for his mastitis research on cattle and especially breakthrough udder cleansing techniques known as “pre-dip” and “post-dip,” that have become widely used nationwide. Perhaps not so widely known though, that the general public would get the reference “DIP-IT” on his auto license plate, nonetheless, it was a trademark among colleagues.

Then he turned his research to biological, non-germicide mastitis controls that were safer for farmers and cattle and more economical. Over the years Pankey taught courses such as Career Seminar, took on the role of dairy Extension specialist, and served on many committees at UVM and in state and national associations until his death in 2,000.

Pankey earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in bacteriology from Louisiana Tech University and his doctorate in microbiology from Louisiana State University. He worked at LSU for 10 years researching mastitis, until 1984, when he joined the animal science department Quality Milk Research Lab at UVM’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences as a research professor.

“Farmers working alongside Woody were viewed (by him) as open minded, educated and energetic collaborators,” said Jackie Folsom, reading the posthumous citation. “These qualities, along with his energy, productivity and reputation for generating outstanding research were key ingredients in his recipe for success.” Folsom, chair of the Hall of Fame committee, led the awards luncheon.

Former UVM provost and interim president John Bramley accepted the award on behalf of the Pankey family. Bramley, who himself was inducted into the Hall of Fame in 2003, had been chair of UVM animal science during Pankey’s tenure there.

Pankey’s wife “Phyllis is proud of Woody and grateful to the nominators who recognize his work not only in the Vermont dairy industry but in the global dairy industry,” said Bramley. “He conducted astounding research and scholarship and was one of the most warm, honest and caring individuals on this planet.”

 

Allbee was Early Advocate

for Buying Local and Direct from Farmer

Roger Allbee is chair of the University of Vermont College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Advisory Board. He was Vermont Secretary of Agriculture, Food and Markets under Gov. Jim Douglas.

Among his many affiliations, previously he was a member of the U.S. House of Representatives committee on agriculture and executive director of the USDA Farm Service Agency in Vermont. Albee developed strong relationships with Quebec and France – countries that celebrate and promote their place-based foods. He was lauded as among the first to envision that application for Vermont products.

In addition, “his work on the Vermont housing and conservation board brought a ‘working landscape’ persepctive to farmland conservation,” said Folsom. “He linked tourism and economic development to agriculture in a very public way.”

Allbee was also vice president and senior staff of the former Farm Credit Banks of Springfield and a Cornell University Extension specialist. Today he is a senior scholar in residence and advisor on agriculture and food systems to the President of Vermont Technical College, an author and opinion columnist of the well known “What Ceres Says” blog.

Vermont Lieut. Gov. Phil Scott presented the award to Allbee.