SPOTLIGHT: Unique Safety Risks for Women Dairy farmers

SPOTLIGHT: Unique Safety Risks for Women Dairy farmers

NOVEMBER 2020

Dairy farms have been synonymous with Wisconsin for many years. America’s Dairyland is the tagline appropriately used on vehicle license plates to remind us that the state of Wisconsin is a hub of dairy farms and associated businesses.

Women are an integral part of the dairy industry. As with many farm jobs, women face different occupational challenges than men, which can place them at greater risk for injury. UMASH connected with Tina Kohlman, a Dairy and Livestock Agent with University of Wisconsin – Division of Extension who was featured in a Hoard’s Dairyman feature “Farm women face extra risks” for insights on the particular injuries women are susceptible to when working in and around dairy cows.

Tina and veterinarian Lindley Reilly teamed up to offer four areas in which women should pay particular attention to when in the dairy barn. These include:

  • Equipment
  • Animals
  • Hormones
  • Mental Health.

Over 30% of U.S. farm operators are women, and there are many more performing daily farm tasks. Tina Kohlman, a University of Wisconsin dairy extension agent.


Tina Kohlman has served as UW-Extension Fond du Lac County’s Dairy & Livestock Agent since May 2012 supporting the Fond du Lac County dairy industry through educational programs related to improving dairy production management. Her proactive outreach includes programming efforts utilizing university-based research to help producers adopt or improve management practices on the farm; conducting on-farm field surveys and research related to milk quality and production costs; and development of publications and curriculum which help improve productivity and profitability for farm clientele. Tina has worked closely with individual dairy farms in the county to increase profitability and productivity through a facilitated team approach to help improve milk quality, reproduction, and milk production. She has also worked closely with farm families to facilitate discussions regarding farm succession planning. Tina has been a leader in state-wide educational efforts regarding dairy replacements and dairy workers’ training.