2022 Hall of Fame

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Hall of Fame 2022

Meritorious Service Award

Velva Henrietta Notter (1926 - 2021)

Velva Notter of Holyoke, Colorado, was not only one of the original driving forces in establishing the Brown Swiss Historical Society (BSHS), but also served the Brown Swiss Association in many areas. She was a true advocate, trailblazer, and historian of the Brown Swiss breed.

Discussions began in 2003 on how a group of people might engage in some organized way to preserve Brown Swiss memorabilia. In 2004, such a group was established with Bill and Velva Notter as a part of that group. At the 2006 Convention in Dubuque, Iowa, the first organized meeting took place. In 2007, BSHS was established. There were 3 committees: Membership & Finance; Preservation; and Publications. Velva was chairman of the Publications committee.  

Velva published the first few Chronicles on her own. The very first Chronicle, was published in September 2007 as seen to the right. Later, Connie Gritton-Winter and Roger Neitzel joined that committee. Velva continued to prepare articles for the Chronicles and served as a Director on the Executive Committee of the Society the entire time.

During the 2008 Convention in Ohio, Myron Fledderjohann gave a tour of a local Historical Society with Velva front and center.

While this award is primarily related to her contributions to the Historical Society, I would like to mention some of her other accomplishments. In 1948, she was the first women to earn a degree in Dairy and Animal Husbandry from Rutgers. While this photo to the left is from a couple of years earlier at age 19, it depicts a true country gal. She was the secretary-treasurer of the Rocky Mountain Brown Swiss Association for nearly 40 years, retiring at 90 years of age.

Bill and Velva received the Historical Master Breeder award in 2013 honoring the Venture Farm herd.

Velva had quite the Brown Swiss memorabilia collection herself as displayed in her living room. She has donated many items to the Historical Society.

Velva was a true advocate for the Big Brown Cow, for the breed, for dairying, and for agriculture in general. She was dedicated to Venture Swiss, the BS Historical Society and to her family.

So, with great appreciation and honor the Historical Society inducts Velva Notter into the Brown Swiss Historical Society Hall of Fame for Meritorious Service.