John and Rita Leahy, Edward C. Sloan, and Ed Traisman will be inducted into the Wisconsin Meat Industry Hall of Fame at a luncheon Thursday, May 1 at the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Madison. The event will be hosted by the Wisconsin Livestock and Meat Council. The annual meeting of the Meat Council takes place at 10:30 a.m. that day, and the luncheon begins at noon.
John and Rita Leahy
John and Rita Leahy created a highly successful meat processing business near Lake Geneva, Wis., and provided strong leadership and assistance to state and national meat processing associations and their members.
The Leahys started their own meat processing business, Lake Geneva Packing, in 1965. The original plant was a converted barn.. Their business flourished over the years, undergoing several expansions and adding 15 employees, and eventually changing its name to Lake Geneva Country Meats.
The Leahys joined the Wisconsin Association of Meat Processors and the American Association of Meat Processors, holding a number of offices in the organizations and working with fellow members to improve their businesses. Perhaps their greatest contribution to the meat industry has been their willingness to share their business experience and expertise with their peers. Together, the Leahys helped to make small meat processors in Wisconsin the envy of those in other states.