More than 1,700 attendees made the 2019 Angus Convention an overwhelming success Nov. 2-4 in Reno, Nevada. The American Angus Association® met its goal of providing top-notch education, networking and entertainment to those who made the trip west.
During the opening general session on Saturday, Nov. 2, Association CEO Mark McCully reflected on the past success of the Business Breed and provided a positive outlook on the year ahead for Angus producers and their commercial customers. McCully gave attendees from all segments of the cattle industry a front-row seat to the interworkings of the Association, extending the reach of the Angus family across the nation.
“While this was the first time the Angus Convention has ever traveled west, we knew the region is home to cattle operations of every size and production type,” McCully said. “The Association had an important goal of increasing the connection between our western members and their commercial bull-buying customers. By providing unmatched educational opportunities and an expansive trade show with plenty of time for networking, I believe we did just that.”
Angus Convention kicked off on Friday, Nov. 1 with the National Angus Tour, hosted by Bently Ranch and sponsored by the California Angus Association. Close to 400 attendees visited the unique operation just south of Reno, located in Minden, Nevada. Tour participants spent the day learning about the multifaceted Bently Ranch, which has vertically integrated their commercial Angus operation, farming and distillery, all in one location.
Friday evening, the new Angus Convention Kick-Off Party celebrating the Angus Foundation honored generous donors and a year of advancements made by the Foundation. Kyle Shobe and the Walk ’em Boys entertained the crowd of more than 400 guests. A live auction of five lots, ranging from hunting and fishing trips to video packages, brought in more than $33,500 unrestricted funds for the Angus Foundation.
“We introduced a new format to our Friday evening event, and we are so happy with the outcome,” said Rod Schoenbine, Angus Foundation director of development. “The opportunity to raise funds through a live auction, to showcase touching video tributes, and to enjoy live music and great food delivered a fun evening for all who attended.”
With producer education as the main focus, attendees had the opportunity to learn from some of the best in the business when it comes to genetics, cattle handling, herd management and more. The Angus Genomics Symposium sponsored by Neogen GeneSeek pushed producers to think outside of the box. Keynote addresses by Innovater and Former CEO of Travelocity Terry Jones and Brad Hine of the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO), provided attendees with a roadmap to digital disruption and an update on a cattle immune function expected progeny difference (EPD). Stuart Bauck, vice president of agrigenomics for Neogen, unveiled new Angus GSSM content to be released in the coming months.
In addition, an in-trade show Learning Lounge was added to provide even more education in quick, 30-minute time frames. Attendees were able to stop into the Learning Lounge during trade show hours to catch up on the latest advancements made by sponsors and Association staff.
The 2019 Convention was truly a well-rounded educational experience. Angus University speakers included Beck Weathers, Mt. Everest survivor, and Joel Cowley, CEO of the Houston Livestock Show and RodeoTM. They inspired convention-goers with stories of history and perserverence. The Sunday afternoon Angus University workshops, sponsored by Zoetis, covered everything from bull development to the relationship of maternal function and carcass merit, and more.
To add to the excitement, more than 800 attendees entered to win a Priefert and Tru-Test by Datamars Complete Cattle Handling System, a John Deere XUV835M HVAC Gator™ Crossover Utility Vehicle and a Bridgeview Manufacturing Bale King 5300. Steve Gilje of Rollete, North Dakota, took home the Complete Cattle Handling System, valued at $33,000. Taylorsville, Kentucky, native Anne Patton Schubert was the lucky winner of the John Deere Gator, a $22,000 piece of equipment. Sarah Thomas took the Bridgeview Manufacturing Bale King 5300 back to Homedale, Idaho.
The second annual Certified Angus Beef ® brand judging contest results were announced, and winners of the three divisions took home a hat from Greeley Hat Works, a $650 value. Colter Pohlman of Texas took home high honors in the junior division and Kallie Knott of Indiana won the young adult division. Minnesota native Karen Mitteness won the adult division and was named overall champion. Following the giveaway drawing, Lubbock, Texas’ own Flatland Cavalry entertained the crowd with their “easy on the ears, heavy on the heart” Texas country music.
Finally, the highly anticipated Awards Recognition Breakfast highlighted some of the Association’s best and brightest. Award winners are:
·American Angus Auxiliary 2019 retiring president: Cindy Ahearn, Texas
·ROV Show Heifer of the Year: T/R NFF Princess E307, Kayden Nowatzke, Michigan City, Indiana
·ROV Show Bull of the Year: C&C Intuition 7104 Ryan Callahan, Edmond, Oklahoma; Express Ranches, Yukon, Oklahoma; Cross Creek Farms Inc, Brimfield, Illinois
·ROV Breeder of the Year: Express Ranches, Oklahoma
§ Spring Cove Ranch, Idaho
§ Purath Angus Farm, Minnesota
·Heritage Angus Foundation Inductees:
o Jarold Callahan, Oklahoma
o Jere and Charles Cannon, Kentucky
o Jim Bradford, Iowa
o Posthumously, Paul St. Blanc, Lousiana
·NJAA Angus Ambassador: Maddie Fugate, Illinois
·Miss American Angus: Eva Hinrichsen, Kansas
To complete the Angus Convention was the 136th Annual Convention of Delegates. Nearly 300 delegates came together to elect five directors and vote on Association business.
·Association Board of Directors elected:
·Richard Dyar, Alabama
·Dave Hinman, Montana
·Alan Miller, Illinois
·Jonathan Perry, Tennesee
·Barry Pollard, Oklahoma
·President and chairman of the board: Don Schiefelbein, Minnesota
·Vice president and vice chairman of the board: David Dal Porto, California
·Treasurer: Jerry Connealy, Nebraska