Sheila M. Burkhardt

Class Year: 2006

County: Kent

Title: Director, Member Relations & Public Affairs, Michigan Milk Producers Association

“The many things I learned while in 4-H—from leadership skills, the importance of teamwork, communications skills, responsibility, and a greater understanding of industry issues—continue to help me today on both a professional and personal basis.”
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Sheila M. Burkhardt, a Michigan 4-H Foundation trustee, has been the Michigan Milk Producers Association director of member relations and public affairs since 1988. She creates and implements educational and informational programs for members, young farmers, and youth and promotional groups. Burkhardt also communicates with the membership on legislative, association and industry issues. Prior to this position she was the MABC-Select Sires communications assistant. She also is a member and past president of the Michigan Dairy Memorial Scholarship Foundation (MDMSF) which raises scholarship money for Michigan State University students interested in pursuing a career in the dairy industry. She is an MSU College of Agriculture and Natural Resources Alumni Association past president and former member of the board of directors. Burkhardt has been a member of the Michigan 4-H Dairy Programming Committee for the past 20 years. She is also currently a member of the State 4-H Animal Science Priority Program Team and the Michigan 4-H Foundation board of trustees. Burkhardt’s honors include the 2002 National Milk Producers Federation Outstanding Communicator of the Year Award; Honorary State FFA Degree; and the Lowell High School Distinguished Alumnus Award.