Bechel Elected to Serve as WCMA President

Steve Bechel of Eau Galle Cheese Factory in Durand, Wisconsin, will serve as President of the Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association (WCMA) Board of Directors in the 2021-2022 term, which begins July 1.

“Earning the confidence of my peers and friends to lead the Wisconsin Cheese Makers Association is a tremendous honor, and I’m excited to continue the work our Board has been doing to expand member services and the reach and impact of the Association’s advocacy work,” said Bechel.

WCMA Board elections were held last week, determining both new officers and new directors for the 2021-2022 term. Joining Bechel as officers are Doug Wilke of Valley Queen Cheese Factory in Milbank, South Dakota, who will serve as First Vice President; Mike Sipple of Agropur Inc.-USA, based in Appleton, Wisconsin, who will serve as Second Vice President; Mike Neu of Chr. Hansen in Milwaukee, Wisconsin who returns to his post as Treasurer; and Chris Renard of Renard’s Cheese in Sturgeon Bay, Wisconsin, joining as Secretary.

Three industry leaders have been elected to join the WCMA Board, including: Tom Dahmen of V&V Supremo Foods – Chula Vista Cheese in Browntown, Wisconsin; Kyle Jensen of Hilmar Cheese Company in Hilmar, California; and Chris Roelli of Roelli Cheese Company in Shullsburg, Wisconsin.

The 2021-22 Board of Directors also includes:

  • Graham Archer of Tetra Pak, Inc., Winsted, Minnesota
  • Brian Baker of Baker Cheese, St. Cloud, Wisconsin
  • Linda Lee of Prairie Farms Dairy, Inc. – Cheese Division, Davenport, Iowa
  • Craig Filkouski of Great Lakes Cheese Company, Hiram, Ohio
  • Jeff Gentine of Masters Gallery Foods, Plymouth, Wisconsin
  • Gary Gosda of Schuman Cheese – Lake Country Dairy, Turtle Lake, Wisconsin
  • Richard Guggisberg of Guggisberg Cheese, Millersberg, Ohio
  • Mike Hinrichsen of Associated Milk Producers, Inc., New Ulm, Minnesota
  • Randy LaGrander of LaGrander’s Hillside Dairy, Stanley, Wisconsin
  • Tim Omer of Emmi Roth USA, Fitchburg, Wisconsin
  • Paul Scharfman of Specialty Cheese Company, Reeseville, Wisconsin
  • Bruce Workman of Edelweiss Creamery, Monticello, Wisconsin
  • Tayt Wuethrich of Grassland Dairy Products, Inc., Greenwood, Wisconsin

WCMA wishes to express its appreciation to outgoing Board President Dave Buholzer of Klondike Cheese Company in Monroe, Wisconsin and directors Greg Siegenthaler of Grande Cheese Company in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin and Mark Witke of Zimmerman Cheese in South Wayne, Wisconsin, who are all retiring from the Board after serving the maximum term limit of six years.