Source: DFA news release
The board of directors and management of Dairy Farmers of America, Inc. (DFA), today announced the death of board chairman, James P. "Tom” Camerlo, Jr.
Camerlo, who had served as DFA's chairman since 2003, passed away Dec. 3, 2009, after a courageous battle with cancer, DFA said. He was 75 years old.
"Tom's commitment to the dairy industry ran deep, and was second only to his devotion to his family,” said Rick Smith, DFA president and CEO. "The entire DFA family extends our heartfelt sympathy to the Camerlos. We share in grieving the passing of our colleague, a dear friend and a man whose lifetime commitment and leadership made an everlasting difference in the dairy industry.”
Service arrangements have not been finalized. DFA is planning a celebration of Camerlo's life and contributions to be held in early 2010.
A scholarship to honor Camerlo's legacy – the James P. "Tom" Camerlo, Jr. Memorial Scholarship. – has been established at Colorado State University, his alma mater. DFA said contributions in Camerlo's name can be sent to the Colorado State University Foundation at P.O. Box 1870, Fort Collins CO 80523-1870. Checks should mention the Tom Camerlo Scholarship in the memo line.
Camerlo, a dairy producer from Florence, Colo., was re-elected to his sixth term as DFA's chairman of the board of directors in March 2008. DFA is a dairy marketing cooperative that serves and is owned by more than 18,000 dairy farmers in 48 states.
According to DFA's Web site, Camerlo had been the owner of Camerlo Dairy since 1963. In addition to serving on DFA's Executive Committee, he was a member of the board for Dairy Management Inc. and the Western Dairy Farmers Promotion Association. He chaired the U.S. Dairy Export Council and was reappointed by the Secretary of Agriculture and the U.S. Trade Ambassador to the Agricultural Policy Advisory Committee for Trade.
Camerlo was named Colorado Livestock Producer of the Year in 1994 and the World Dairy Expo Dairyman of the Year in 2003. He also was inducted into the Colorado Agriculture Hall of Fame in 2001.