This year’s Distinguished Young Breeder winner is one of the brightest financial minds in our Association and is one who is very humble and hard-working. The winner has served the Association in numerous leadership roles over the past seven years including on the Executive Committee, finance committee, National Convention planning committee, state convention planning committee, and the transition team that helped this Association plan for life after Ken Raney’s retirement. This winner can be described as determined, meticulous, and straightforward.
This year’s winner is Rosalie Zaginaylo of Four-Zag Holsteins in Berwick, PA. Rosie Z. as people refer to her since most people struggle with pronouncing her name.
A good purchase for Rosie was at a Nittany Lion Fall Classic sale when she bought Pennwood Adolph Cobalt in partnership with one of her dairy mentors, Jan Jurbala. Cobalt sold as a bred heifer that year and ended up with a score of EX-90.
While Cobalt provided some success in Rosie’s herd, she notes in her application that Fairwood Chairman Beryl and North-Rush Lou Gaye are the two cows that had the greatest influence in her herd that she owns and operates with her family.
Beryl was purchased by her parents from a neighbor and mentor, William Fairchild in 1987. Beryl was one of three heifers that introduced 100%RHA Holstein cattle to Tri-John Holsteins, her parents’ prefix. From Beryl’s line came Tri-John Macys Parade, the first bred and owned excellent cow on the family farm.
Rosie’s second most influential cow, North-Rush Lou Gaye was purchased on a production sale PHA managed for another of Rosie’s mentors, Marlin and Karen Shultz of Danville. Gaye hailed from the Shultz’s best cow family. She eventually scored EX-90 for Rosie. Rosie described her importance, “Gaye was an important purchase for us because her granddaughter is our 2nd Bred and Owned EX cow, Tri-John Perky Gorgeous, who recently scored EX-91. Gorgeous is one of our oldest cows and we are milking 2 of her daughters and she is pregnant again. She is our ideal cow in the barn, because she has an excellent set of feet and legs, along with the dairy character for a strong cow. Plus, her personality is 2nd to none.”
In 2015, Rosie took over the herd from her parents and collectively they built a new dairy facility centered on cow comfort. This well-ventilated compost pack barn with a set-up parlor has allowed the Zaginaylos to expand from 30 cows to 120 cows over the past six plus years. Those first cows that moved into the new barn from their old tie-stall barn increased in milk production almost overnight. Longevity has become the norm, not the exception.
As Rosie expanded the herd she brought in a significant portion of Marlin & Karen Shultz’s herd. With this deal, she also received more coaching from Marlin, a fun-loving masterful breeder.
Four-Zag Holsteins is a Holstein Complete herd that uses Tri-Star at the Premier level, Tag ID along with EASY ID to register calves and they classify. Currently the herd BAA is 106.6 with 3 EX & 26 VG cows, that’s up from 105BAA from just 5 years ago. In that span she increased the herd average from 20,506 to 21,803.
Rosie is using high GTPI bulls with a minimum of 2600 GTPI. She is focusing on building a strong cow with good health traits, along with positive net merit, solid functional type, Feet and legs and udders are very important to her, especially in our bedded pack facility.
Off the farm she works as a consultant support analyst. She keeps up with the news about what is going on in the Dairy Industry and Agriculture as a whole.
In her application Rosie says, “I try to be a resource for my dairy farmer friends and neighbors that might not understand programs, or other issues that come up in the industry. For example, when the changes were made to the Dairy Margin Coverage Program and recently with the added Supplemental DMC. I researched the program and filled out the applications early on so I could explain the process to others and what items were needed. I also researched the Dairy Revenue Protection program to use for my operation and offer advice to others. I have a strong financial background and have offered advice to other farmers that might have questions about different capital purchase decisions, or budgeting concerns. I also forward contract milk for my own farm with my cooperative, so I have also helped others understand that process.”
Rosie has aggressive goals for her herd like a 110 BAA, 2400 for her heifers average GTPI, and 23,000 RHA. We know that Rosie will accomplish these goals and more because of her determined spirit and her brilliant mind. Congratulations Rosie Z!
Provided by Pennsylvania Holstein Association