George Antonio Borba, member-owner and past chairman of the board for California Dairies, Inc., Visalia, Calif., passed away Oct. 23. During his time with CDI, Borba initiated three of the largest cooperatives in the nation to merge and form California Dairies, Inc., where he served as chairman of the board from its inception in 1999-2009.
“George Borba was willing to take a vision of a united California dairy industry and take it to the next level. For this, I have the utmost respect for him,” says Tony Mendes, CDI member and former chairman of the board. “The dairy industry owes a great deal to George Borba. Throughout his career, he vigorously advocated on behalf of all dairymen, large or small, always inserting himself personally into issues that affected them.”
Borba’s constant quest to improve the quality of life for the dairy producer kept him at the forefront of innovation, especially in cooperative organizations. He was chairman of the board at California Milk Producers (CMP), a predecessor cooperative of CDI, from 1996-1999. As chairman of CMP, Borba championed the formation of and served as chairman of a marketing agency in common (MAC) among CMP and other California cooperatives. In 1999, he played an instrumental role in the merger of Danish Creamery, San Joaquin Valley Dairymen and CMP to effectuate a better California dairy industry through the creation of CDI. Under Borba’s leadership, CDI surpassed $3 billion in sales, making it the second largest dairy processing cooperative in the nation.
Borba was owner of George Borba and Son Dairy, which produced award-winning quality milk and qualified to receive the annual quality milk award nine out of 12 years.
Borba is survived by his wife, Delores, of 57 years; daughters Kim Borba, Linda (Armen) Gourdikian, Victoria (Andrew) Rynsburger, Cynthia (Tom) Podmajersky; son George Borba Jr. (Jennifer); 18 grandchildren; four great-grandchildren; a brother, John, and a sister, Mary Borba Parente.
In lieu of flowers, charitable donations can be made to the Dr. Edwin Posadas Prostate Cancer Research Center, 8700 Beverly Blvd., Suite 2416, Los Angeles, CA 90048, or online at www.cedars-sinai.edu/giving/.