S. Atkisson Award Information
Myrna Metzer receives the
2014 Steve Atkisson Indiana Dairy Service Award
Pictured (left to right): Andy Gall (President of the Board of Directors for IMQP), Myrna Metzer (Retiree from Milk Promotions of Indiana) and Deb Osza (General Manager for American Dairy Association)
Myrna Metzger Receives Atkisson Award
Ft. Wayne, IN. The 2014 recipient of the Steve Atkisson Indiana Dairy Service award is Myrna Metzger of McCordsville, IN; long-time General Manager of American Dairy Association of Indiana and founder (along with several Indiana dairy farmers) and General Manager of Milk Promotion Services of Indiana. The award was presented at the 15th annual Indiana Milk Quality Conference in Ft. Wayne, IN on Tuesday, April 15, 2014 for “outstanding contributions to the dairy industry of Indiana” by Deb Osza, current General Manager of American Dairy Association Indiana, Inc.
Myrna Hazel Metzger spent a career promoting milk and dairy products and caring for the people who comprise the Indiana dairy industry. Within the dairy industry and in the Indy Car racing circles, Myrna was fondly nicknamed the Milk Lady. That name arose because as the representative of the Indiana dairy industry and on behalf of its dairy farm families, for many years she was the friendly face waiting in victory circle to present the ice cold bottle of milk to the winner of the Indianapolis 500 mile race. Myrna also implemented the Fastest Rookie Luncheon to recognize the fastest qualifying rookie driver and all rookies to acquaint them with the tradition of the drink of milk at the end of the race, which has been coined the “Coolest Prize in all of Sports”.
But Mrs. Metzger’s role was so much more than simply the Milk Lady! Myrna was a true visionary leader in Indiana’s Dairy Industry to secure state check-off dollars for the Mideast Marketing Agency (MEMA), even crafting the legislative documents for its creation. When the Federal Milk Marketing Orders were realigned by USDA in 2000, Myrna, though already retired, drafted new state legislation to create the Indiana Dairy Industry Development Board that is responsible for the milk check-off program in Indiana. She was also an enthusiastic supporter of the first-ever Indiana Milk Quality Conference. Perhaps most importantly of all, Myrna Metzger cared deeply for the dairy farms she supported. She and her husband, Marvin, presently reside in McCordsville, IN, where they continue to be actively involved in church and community.
The award sponsored by Indiana Milk Quality Professionals, Inc., is named in honor of the late Mr. Steve Atkisson, a very well respected milk quality specialist and dairy farm and plant survey inspector with the Dairy Program of the Indiana State Board of Animal Health. Mr. Atkisson was known for his professionalism, fairness, and steadfast dedication to ensuring the safety and quality of milk and dairy products for Indiana’s residents.
Atkisson Award Winners
2009 - Steve Atkisson
2010 - Simon Kenyon
2011 - Jim Harton
2012 - Dr. Mike Schutz
2013 - Gary Kuhlmann
2014 - Myrna Metzer