Tom and Mary Portner

Brown County
2017

Port-Haven Dairy was established near Sleepy Eye by Harold Portner, Sr. in 1945. Harold was an active Brown Swiss breeder, giving his time and talents to the Minnesota and National Brown Swiss Breeders Associations. In the summer of 1990, a barn fire destroyed the dairy barn and half of the family’s herd and that fall, Harold rebuilt the barn.

In 1992, Tom bought the cows from his father and married Mary. Tom and Mary, along with Tom’s brother, Mark, began rebuilding the herd. Today, the family milks 270 cows and raises their own replacements. Tom and Mary manage the dairy; Mark is in charge of crop production.

Tom and Mary have five daughters: Boston, Sabrina, Isabella, Crystal and Sophia.

The Portner family has been very active in 4-H over the years. The whole family has taken part in dairy cattle showing and judging as well as the Dairy Project Bowl. The daughters have been involved in FFA at the chapter, region and state levels.

Tom and Mary are voting members and delegates to Dairy Farmers of America and are involved in the Minnesota and National Brown Swiss Associations. The family is active in St. Mary’s Parish of Sleepy Eye.

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