Latest News (63)

Meet Foundation Board Member Bob Mullion

Palo Verde Valley, CA

Bob, Jamie, Michael and Jamey Mullion operate Red River Farms, a diversified farming operation in the Palo Verde Valley, along the Colorado River near Blythe, California. They run 150 purebred and SimAngus females on irrigated pasture, focusing on performance, calving ease and phenotype. Bob managed a full blood operation in Colorado following graduation from Cal Poly, and has been passionate about the breed ever since.

Mullion is a strong believer that the future of the Simmental breed is dependent upon its youth and is an avid supporter of the Western and National AJSA programs. One of his greatest joys is watching his granddaughters, Madison, Logan, and Hayden in the showring.

This is a specific objective that the ASF supports:

The Eastern and Western Regions have each formed state groups to fundraise for their yearly Regional Classics. The Eastern Regional group hosts a fundraiser at the NAILE each year, allowing states in the east to step up more freely to host classics, due to a lower financial cost. Following suit of a previously successful regional group, the Western Region formed their own group. The key is to see states within a specific region as one unit, rather than individuals. The establishment of these regional groups is to raise funds for the Eastern and Western Regional Classics, despite which state holds the classic

 

 

 

Scott Cowger

Meet Foundation Board Member Scott Cowger

Kansas City, Missouri

Scott Cowger purchased his first Simmental bred heifer in 1982 which led to an active involvement with the AJSA growing up. Cowger then became active at a state level in Missouri. He has served on the Missouri Simmental Association board as well as the ASA Board for three years. His involvement has rubbed off on his daughter Jordan, who is currently the AJSA President.

Scott and his family enjoy attending the AJSA National Classic each year. He believes that the Simmental breed has the best National Classic with the various events youth compete in to become well-rounded individuals. This involvement over the years leads to their giving to the Foundation. Being involved with this breed for over 35 years he is a passionate believer in the American Simmental Association and its members.  Cowger states, "The future is very bright in our youth and the scientific data we as a breed have compiled is second to none.  Ensuring the future of our breed for years to come would be the biggest reason someone should support the foundation. There are numerous areas of interest and working cooperatively through financial donations would greatly assist the breed for years to come."

This is a specific objective that the ASF supports:
AJSA Canadian Exchange Project. Each summer, two AJSA Board of Trustee members are randomly selected to attend the Young Canadian Simmental Association National Classic. This is more than just an opportunity to travel, but rather an opportunity for AJSA members to learn about international agriculture, and gain new friends in an attempt to build their resume and personal experience.

 

Meet Foundation Board Member Lori Eberspacher            |            

Marshall, MN                            
Family: husband, Val; daughter Amanda, favorite son-in-law Mark and granddaughter Kinslee Hope                       
Employer: Owner of Eberspacher Ent Inc Sale Management for 30 years.                

Lori Eberspacher is no stranger to the Foundation. Along with her husband, Val, Eberspacher lives in Marshall, Minnesota, where they operate Eberspacher Enterprises Inc. Sale Management. Both Val and Lori were raised on purebred operations, as well as raising their daughter, Amanda in the cattle industry. The seedstock business is near and dear to their hearts. The Eberspachers have been promoting the Foundation and the AJSA for the past 21 years, and Lori has strong conviction toward the cause.

“It is my belief that if you have a strong Junior program, you will have a strong breed association for years to come. The AJSA has been so successful at allowing youth who love the livestock industry to follow their dreams and in the process, teach them the importance of the dedication this breed has done for making the science/research equal the success of this breed,” Eberspacher states. “That is the reason I believe in supporting the Foundation to be able to touch the lives of so many youth in a positive way. The Foundation is set up to allow everyone to support their interest and add to the breed for research, science, education, and youth. There is a place for everyone to support the Foundation, and yes, one person can make a difference!”

This is a specific objective that the ASF supports:

Established in 1981, the Merit Award is designed to provide recognition to junior members who have made “significant contributions to their community, home, family, school and the Simmental or Simbrah breeds of cattle.” As college tuition continues to increase, the Foundation continues to support 16 AJSA members each year by awarding over $26,250 in scholarships, 11 Silver Merit Awards and 5 Gold Merit Awards, to help them continue their collegiate educational endeavors.

 
 
Tonya Phillips grew up in Iowa and was a member of the Iowa Junior Simmental Association. She and her brother were fortunate enough to exhibit two Simmental heifers across Iowa and attend regional and national events. Phillips absolutely loved her time in the AJSA and also served on the AJSA Board of Trustees. She met her husband Chan while attending one of the National Classics.

Phillips shares, “We both realized the value of the AJSA and the lifelong skills that juniors learn. We knew that we wanted our children involved as well. There are many areas that donors can designate their funds within the Foundation.”. She encourages people to contribute to the area that they are passionate about so that area can be expanded and help educate members. A teacher for 27 years, Tonya will be retiring this month and moving to Oklahoma. Chan and Tonya have two children: her son, AK, who is an active AJSA member, and Morgan, former AJSA President, who recently married Sam Wallace. 

This is a specific objective that the ASF supports: 

AJSA Canadian Exchange Project: each summer, two AJSA Board of Trustee members will be randomly selected to attend the Young Canadian Simmental Association National Classic. This is more than just an opportunity to travel, but rather an opportunity for AJSA members to learn about international agriculture, new ideas to progress the association, and gain new friends in an attempt to build their resume and personal experience.

 

 

Dr. Mikell Davis, DVM

Starkville, Mississippi

Family: Wife, Mary Cheek Davis; daughters: Laura (Jon) Conroy, Lisa (Tony) Rook, Sara (Steve) Lyle; grandchildren: Morgan, Lauren, Erin, Lindsey, Justin

Employment: Little Creek Farm, LLC and retired from the College of Veterinary Medicine at Mississippi State.

Mikell Davis, DVM is retired from the College of Veterinary Medicine at Mississippi State University. His family owns Little Creek Farm, LLC (ASA 182335) which purchased its first full Fleckvieh Simmental cattle in 1993, and maintains the herd today. Davis enjoys attending sales for the personal interaction with other cattle breeders.

As a supporter of the breed, Davis encourages others to give to the Foundation to preserve and enhance the present for the future. Davis and his wife, Mary, live in Starkville and have three daughters and five grandchildren.

This is a specific objective that the ASF supports:

Walton-Berry Graduate Student Support Grant supports graduate education with an emphasis on genetic improvement of livestock. The fund originally started by Jim Berry of Wildberry Farms honors Dr. Bob Walton’s lifelong efforts in animal breeding and raising Simmental cattle. Walton-Berry Graduate Student Support Grant funds graduate education in research programs to directly improve applied livestock genetics and help build future experts in animal breeding. There are two awards - one for $5,000 and a second for $3,000 for graduate education programs; each recipient contributes to ASA Publication, Inc. regarding their research both SimTalk and the Register.


Emily Brinkman                  
New Bavaria, Ohio                   
Family: Parents: Tim & Peg, Brother Kyle             
Employment: Creative Director/Owner of Generation 6 Marketing.            

Emily Brinkman hails from New Bavaria in northwest Ohio. The AJSA has been a big part of Brinkman’s life because her parents Tim and Peg took her and her brother, Kyle, across the US to participate in the Regional and National Classics. She has served on the AJSA Board from 2008-2012, serving as President in 2011. Today, Brinkman owns Generation 6 Marketing, an agricultural marketing, and graphic design business, and is actively involved with her family’s 75 head cow-calf operation. She has donated her graphic design and marketing talents to AJSA and ASF projects since her time as an AJSA member ended.

Brinkman believes that each segment of the Foundation (Education, Research, and Youth) supports programs important to the Simmental breeds’ success. The youth program provides a strong foundation for the future membership, but we're also able to give the next generation the tools through education and research to continue the success of the Simmental breed. She also knows the impact the AJSA had on her life. “I strongly believe future generations should have the same youth program opportunities. Not only are youth programs important to me, but also the success and longevity of our breed,” says Brinkman.

 


Mark Smith          |    Picayune, Mississippi          
Mark's family includes his wife Debbie, their daughter Jessica, and their son Alan, his wife Sara Catherine, and two wonderful grandchildren, Ross Alan and Ella Catherine. 
Employment: Re/Max Premier Group for 15 years, previously ABS for 22 years.

Mark grew up in the dairy business until 1988, raising Registered Jersey cattle with his brother Neal and father Ezra Smith. In 1972, he learned to AI and began AIing his neighbors' herd of Simmental cattle. At this time he learned how much performance the breed offered. In 1988, after dispersing the Jerseys, Greg Brown, a Mississippi Simmental breeder, assisted him in getting in the breed. Mark purchased his first Simbrah in 1989. Jason Todd and Jennifer Rogers introduced the Regional and National Classics to the Smith's as they were showing some of the Smith's calves, and invited them to tag along. Once they realized the AJSA program was more than a cow show with the contests such as judging, sales talk, quiz, and speaking, they were hooked! It is the only show they attended that more kids were winners other than just the Grand Champion owner.

The AJSA is so much more than the show. Character building, leadership development, work ethic, people skills, plus making a lot of friends for all involved. The Smith's children, Alan and Jessica, benefited greatly from the AJSA program. It is truly priceless, and that is why we give to the Foundation. Not only that but you can earmark your giving, and the Foundation board will use it where specified. AJSA youth is the best investment for Foundation dollars there is...my kids are living proof.

Profiles will be added weekly!

Lloyd W. Powell            |             August 6, 1933 – June 18, 2018                                     

 

 Lloyd W. Powell, who served as Chairman of the ASA Board of Trustees during the 1987-88 year, passed away in Scottsdale, Arizona, at the age of 84. An Oregon native, Powell experienced great success through a professional career that spanned six decades.

 He was elected to the ASA Board of Trustees in 1983 and served two three year terms. His business acumen provided valuable insight into the financial and investment aspects of the Association. His advice was sought and readily accepted by his fellow board members.

His Simmental operation, Pine Mountain Ranch, which grew to more than 400 head at its peak, was located near Bend where the Cascade Mountains meet the legendary high desert. He represented ASA as the organization’s official representative to the World Simmental Fleckvieh Federation and traveled extensively in that capacity.

In addition to his cattle operation, he was the owner of Powell Construction Company, which became one of the foremost shopping center contractors in the Pacific Northwest.

 Born in Portland, he attended the University of Oregon (UO), where he played football and ran on the track team. He maintained a continuing connection to his alma mater, serving as a member of the Board of Trustees; created several endowments; and helped finance a number of building projects. Powell Plaza, situated on the campus, is named in his honor.

He is survived by his wife, Sharon; four sons; eight grandchildren; and three great-grandchildren.

Staff and board members represent ASA at BIF 
 
The Beef Improvement Federation (BIF) annual meeting held in Loveland, CO, last week was a
celebration of 50 years since a small group of innovative beef producers and researchers conceived the idea of an organization that would "connect science and industry to improve beef cattle genetics."

Initially, BIF focused on moving from selection based on visual appraisal to performance-based selection, and standardizing performance records across breeds. From that beginning, the science of beef cattle breeding and genetics has evolved through the maze of acronyms (EBV, BLUP, EPD, DNA) to the powerful genetic selection tools we have available today. A video history of BIF is available at  https://youtu.be/s37Vdu0hwtk There is an amazing parallel and symbiosis between BIF and ASA - both started in 1968 by innovative beef producers focused on the use of performance records to improve the accuracy of selection over visual appraisal. Think of the ASA motto displayed on the historic stained glass in the ASA office "Visual analysis tells you what a Simmental appears to be...performance and progeny test tell you what he actually is." 

In the parallel 50-year histories of ASA and BIF, many ASA members have provided leadership in BIF including many serving as BIF President, and many ASA members have been recognized by BIF for various awards. This year was no exception. ASA member Donnell Brown from Texas completed his term as BIF president during the convention last week, Gordon Jones, ASA member from Kentucky, was elected to the BIF board of directors, and Dr. Lauren Hyde, IGS Lead Geneticist continues her service on the BIF board. Lynn Pelton, ASA member from Kansas, was recognized for his longtime service receiving the 2018 BIF Continuing Service Award. Pelton served as BIF president in 2005.

ASA and IGS programs and staff were highlighted in a number of BIF sessions. Dr. Wade Shafer was a panel member discussing "Who Owns Your Data and Where Is It". The committee on Advancements in Selection Decisions really highlighted the IGS Multi-breed Genetic Evaluation powered by BOLT. Steve McGuire, ASA COO, talked about "Stitching 13 Breed Association's Data Together." Dr. Bruce Golden, Theta Solutions, discussed the methods and models behind the IGS EPDs, and Dr. Lauren Hyde, IGS/ASA Geneticist, explained how the " New IGS EPDs are Really Better." The session concluded with Dr. Shafer on a panel discussing the "Trials and Tribulations of Weekly Evaluations". 

Proceedings of the BIF convention are available in printed form at https://beefimprovement.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/06/18_BIFProceedings.pdf.

 
Steve McGuire
Steve McGuire, "Stitching 13 Breed Associations' Data Together"
Wade Shafer participates in panel discussion on "Who Owns Your DNA?"
Chip Kemp and Leoma Wells of the ASA catch up with George Owen from the American Waygu Association
Chip Kemp and Leoma Wells of the ASA catch up with George Owen from the American Waygu Association
Tim Smith_ ASA Board Chairman and Fred Smith_ ASA Board Treasurer
Tim Smith, ASA Board Chairman and Fred Schuetze, ASA Board Treasurer
Dr. Mahdi Saatchi, IGS Lead Genomicist
"New IGS EPDs are Really Better"
Marty Ropp_ Allied Genetic Resources.  _What I Learned from Pigs_
Marty Ropp, Allied Genetic Resources.  "What I Learned from Pigs"
ASA_s Chip Kemp and Lane Giess
ASA's Chip Kemp and Lane Giess
 
BIF is well attended and provides time for international collaboration. Pictured from left to right:  David Bolduc, Canadian Beef Breeds Council, Lauren Hyde, American Simmental,  Peter Parnell and Andrew Byrne, Australian Angus, and Wade Shafer, ASA.

Excerpt from the Foreword written by Dr. John Pollak.                             

"The reader of this book will gain knowledge of the history of the Simmental breed, the Association and the people behind the breed. Embracing the story of Simmental in the United States beef industry may help create a sense of accomplishment and relevance that current membership can take pride in as they carry the banner of the breed forward. But there is also value in studying history. Generations of cattle and of the ranchers and farmers who produced those cattle have come and gone over the past 50 years. They faced cyclical cattle markets, environmental and social issues, and challenges that come from moving an organization and a diverse membership forward. They made mistakes and at times got off course, yet learning from these miscues prepares today's leaders for making future decisions. Bold decisions were made that created positive change and should instill confidence in future leadership as they seek to be innovative in new endeavors. The constant threat in the past is that they continued to adhere to the core principle of data collection and utilization. Hence, I encourage all who read this book to keep in mind how knowledge of this history will help in addressing current aspirations for producing better cattle while addressing new challenges that face not just Simmental but the entire cattle industry".  

"Simmental's American Journey" will be available for purchase at Fall Focus 2018 and 50 Year Celebration! Stay tuned on how to get your copy if you can't make it to the celebration!

Paulette Cochenour and Lilly Platts researching and locating photos for Simmental's American Journey.    

Paulette Cochenour and Lilly Platts locating photos and researching for the history book.

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