Keown receives national dairy award

Retiring dairy specialist Jeffrey Keown is the first Nebraskan to be honored with the DeLaval Extension Award by the American Dairy Science Association. The award honors outstanding achievement in dairy science.

Keown is professor of animal science and extension dairy specialist in the Department of Animal Science. He's a 1967 graduate of the University of Delaware with a Bachelor of Science in animal and poultry science. He obtained a doctorate from Cornell University in 1972, majoring in animal breeding and minoring in biometrics and genetics. After graduating from Cornell, he worked at USDA in Beltsville for two years and then in industry in Ithaca for nine years before joining UNL in 1985.

Along with teaching, research and Extension programs, Keown is responsible for managing the 150-cow research milking herd located at the university’s Agricultural Research and Development Center at Mead.

Keown is known for establishing an outstanding Extension program for dairy producers in Nebraska and the upper Midwest. Keown served as the UNL representative on the Midwest Dairy Consortium through 2006 to integrate dairy education and research in Midwest universities. His Nebraska dairy website,, is used by dairymen throughout the nation. While most of his research efforts are focused on genetic improvement of dairy cattle, he also addresses reproductive management, use of new technology and the application of records and computerization in making dairy management decisions.

Keown will receive the award at the 2011 ADSA meeting in New Orleans in July.

Keown is retiring this year.