ANKENY, Iowa – Ashley Elsbernd, a 19-year-old from Calmar, was crowned the 70th Iowa Dairy Princess during an evening ceremony at the Iowa State Fairgrounds in Des Moines on Wednesday, August 9. Ashley, daughter of Peter and Kristi Elsbernd, will spend the year serving as a goodwill ambassador for Iowa’s dairy farmers. Throughout her year-long reign, she will make public appearances to connect with consumers and help them understand the dedication of dairy farm families to their cows, their land, and the milk they produce.
Ashley represented Winneshiek County in the contest and will be a junior at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville this fall, where she studies dairy science and agriculture business. Ashley was also recognized for her performance in the public speaking portion of the contest.
Elizabeth Fossum, 18, of Waterville, was named Iowa Dairy Princess Alternate. Elizabeth, the daughter of Kevin and Julie Fossum, will share duties with the princess. She represented Allamakee County and will be a freshman at the University of Wisconsin-Platteville studying agriculture business. Elizabeth was also named Miss Congeniality in the contest.
Six candidates competed for the Iowa Dairy Princess title, with the judging held on August 8 and 9 in Ankeny. The winners were selected based on an application, answers to essay questions, interview and public speaking skills, professionalism, and ability to advocate for dairy farmers.
The outgoing 2022-23 Iowa Dairy Princess was Naomi Scott, daughter of Mike and Kathleen Scott of Westgate, and the Alternate Princess was Emily Manweiler, daughter of Wil and Karen Manweiler of Sumner. Their reigns will be completed at the end of the month, and the new Princess and Alternate will begin their duties on September 1.
Editor’s note: Interview opportunities with the Iowa Dairy Princess and Alternate are available. To make a request, please contact Mariah Busta at (563)379-8619 or Mackenzie Felt-Lewis at (515)250-1188.
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