Buttke Family Dairy Named Outstanding Dairy of the Year

Submitted by krinehart on June 14, 2012 - 5:08pm
  • Buttke Family at the Buttke Dairy -- Photo by Brenda Hawkes - Hawkes Photography

    Buttke Family at the Buttke Dairy -- Photo by Brenda Hawkes - Hawkes Photography

SANTA ROSA, Calif. – May 9, 2012 – The Sonoma County Fair is pleased to announce that the Buttke Family Dairy of Sebastopol has been named this year’s Outstanding Dairy of the Year in the North Bay. The Buttkes will be presented with the Edward J. Maddalena Memorial Trophy on Farmer’s Day at the Fair, August 5 in Chris Beck Arena.


Established in 1977, the dairy is run by owners Doug and Judy Buttke and son, Nick, 33, and they are passing the tradition along to their four grandsons as well. The Buttkes milk 150 dairy cows and run a herd of beef cattle on 750 acres of leased ranch land along Blank Road in the hills south of Sebastopol. This is a true family farm, with all three generations working together to handle the chores—milking, feeding, cleaning and more—365 days a year. Dedication and teamwork allow them to preserve the rural lifestyle they cherish.

“It’s definitely the lifestyle that keeps us plugging away every day so that we can stay on the land and do what we love. On a ranch, we are able to work together as a family in the country. I just couldn’t see us living in the city,” says Judy Buttke, a fourth-generation North Bay dairy rancher who is a member of the Corda family of Petaluma. “We are hoping that dairy farming and agriculture will remain viable in Sonoma County for future generations.” In 2011, Judy Buttke and Joyce Leveroni, both active North Bay Dairywomen  put together a written history called Dairy Families 75 Years Sonoma and Marin Counties that is now a part of the Sonoma County History and Geneaology collection. Thank you Judy and Joyce! Judy is the Chairperson of the annual Dairy Princess Contest and Ball, now in its 55th year and also serves on the District 3 Committee of the California Milk Advisory Board and is District Director of the California Dairy Campaign. Doug previously served on the Sonoma-Marin 4-H Dairy Replacement Heifer Committee. In addition to Nick, the Buttkes have a daughter, Clarette McDonald, who lives in Valley Ford with her family and works as the office manager at Dairymen’s Feed & Supply Co-op in Petaluma, and another son, Glen, who drives for Chisholm Trail Hay Transportation.

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I have known this family for many years. Way back when, when I was board and wanted something to do, Out on Blank Rd. My mom told me to get on my bike, and ride up that lane that the milk truck went up, and get a job...I was 15 years old., How lucky is that, to follow a milk truck up a hill, and have some guy take a chance on some delinquint kid to help take care of your livelkyhood!?! As this article said, Doug and Judy have worked very hard to do what it takes to be #1. As a younger man, I was very lucky to have been involved with this family of COW JUICE products...Thanks Doug and Judy foir all of your support over the years. See you all at the Penngrove parade and picknick!!

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