Congratulations to Elizabeth Kohtz, DVM, of Twin Falls, Idaho, who has been named the 2020 Dairy Quality Veterinarian of the Year. In honor of the award, a $1,000 donation was made to the Magic Valley Dairy Heifer program in Dr. Kohtz’s name.
The Dairy Quality Veterinarian of the Year, sponsored by Diamond V, is awarded by the Dairy Quality Center (DQC) to a veterinarian who has been in the Verified Premium Plus program (VPP) for a minimum of two years, and has the most dairies in the 90%-plus list on the walk-through audit – making them Sustainable Dairy Award winners. Over the past year Dr. Kohtz has worked with various VPP certified herds.
“I grew up on a small dairy and row crop farm in Twin Falls, Idaho. From an early age I decided I wanted to be a veterinarian and never changed my mind,” said Dr. Kohtz. “I’m excited to have the honorarium donated to the Magic Valley Dairy Heifer Program. In the program, 4-H and FFA youth purchase a heifer from a local dairyman and take her to the fair as a yearling. The student must then have the heifer bred, and show and sell her at the fair the second year. Each year the program offers three education days for participants to learn more about the dairy industry.”
Dr. Kohtz says the best part of her job is working with dairymen and employees on dairies. “The people I work with become my friends and I enjoy developing deep relationships with them. While I don’t have any ownership shares in the dairies I work on, I think of them as “my cows” and work just as hard to produce high quality milk on these farms as if they were my own.”
Dr. Kohtz has over 13 years of veterinary experience and owns and operates a dairy veterinary practice, milk quality laboratory, and row crop farm. She practices full-spectrum dairy medicine, as well as consults with large dairies. Dr. Kohtz serves as president of the Twin Falls County Farm Bureau, is a graduate of AFBF PAL Class 7, past president of the Idaho Veterinary Medical Association, past secretary/treasurer of the Magic Valley Veterinary Medical Association, past president of the Philanthropic Educational Organization, PTO secretary of St. Edwards Catholic School, and chairman of the Kimberly FFA Advisory Board. Dr. Kohtz is an avid runner and dabbles in Ironman 70.3 triathlons. She and her husband, Steven, are busy raising daughters Arabella, 11, and Josephine, 9.
“We are proud to honor Dr. Kohtz with the Dairy Quality Veterinarian of the Year award. She is a conscientious professional who truly cares for each cow under her responsibility,” said Rodrigo Carranza, DQC Executive Director. “Dr. Kohtz works closely with her dairy clients to improve cow comfort; ensure judicious use of antibiotics and eliminate residue risks; maintain accurate records; train employees in responsible animal handling; and guide farm practices for sustainable food production. Through participation in the Verified Premium Plus Program (VPP), her dairy clients earn premiums beyond grade & yield for their marketed dairy beef delivered directly to the beef packer. This strengthens traceability and transparency, producing safe and high-quality milk and beef for consumers to enjoy.”