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Commercial Producer Nominees

Seven commercial cattlemen nominated for Commercial Producer of the Year.

Bambarger Cattle Farm | Durheim Ranch | E. Roen Ranches | Larson Angus Ranch | Leavitt Lake Ranches | Quinn Cow Co. | Silver Spur Ranch


Bambarger Cattle Farm, Northport, Ala.

Owners/Managers: John and Jim Bambarger


Bambarger Cattle Farm is a second-generation cattle operation, owned and operated by John and Jim Bambarger, located near Eutaw, Ala.The operation consists of 250 acres of pasture and hay fields with another 200 acres of timberland. The cow herd consists of 75 Angus-cross cows calving from late September to December. A long-term performance goal of Bambarger Cattle Farm has been to establish a high-quality, uniform cow herd through decisions based primarily on performance records and through retention of the best replacement heifers. Performance records have been diligently maintained for more than 10 years, utilizing on-farm spreadsheets and the Alabama BCIA commercial recordkeeping program.


Select Angus sires have been chosen for the last 12 years for calf uniformity, conformation, calving ease, growth, maternal ability, and high yield and carcass quality. Replacement heifers are selected by evaluation of both individual and dam performance records for traits that include weaning weight indexes and calving intervals. Steer calves are marketed annually in July through the Alabama Feeder Calf Marketing Association teleauction. Bambarger Cattle Farm typically markets thirty 800-pound (lb.) steers annually and partners with a fellow producer to offer a uniform truckload. Replacement heifers are marketed with complete performance and genetic data through Alabama BCIA heifer sales or by private treaty


Short-term goals of Bambarger Cattle Farm are to maintain a healthy, productive cow herd and to raise a highly marketable calf crop each year. Long-term goals are to keep the land productive, keep improving the quality of the cow herd through good herd management practices, and to leave the land in good condition for the next generation. 


Bambarger Cattle Farm is proudly nominated by the Alabama Beef Cattle Improvement Association (BCIA).


Durheim Ranch, Ellendale, N.D.

Owners/Managers: Bruce and Lynette Durheim

Northern Brown County, S.D., is where Bruce and Lynette Durheim manage a commercial herd of 275 Red Angus cows. Located in farming country, their 3,000 acres consists of 2,000 acres of pasture, 150 acres of alfalfa and 850 acres of crop ground, which is leased during growing season but does provide residue grazing. Together, the couple handles all of the ranch work.


Calving season starts the last week of March. Within 13 months the steer calves are hanging on the rail. The majority of the heifer calves make replacements, either retained in the herd or sold to fellow ranchers. In their 14-year history of retained ownership through slaughter, the steers have an average profit of $75 per head. Since 1997, they have added value to the calves through Red Angus’s FCCP program, which allows access to premium product lines in addition to receiving premiums for age and source verification.


Carcass data on previously retained steers supported the decision to sell on the grid in 2003. That decision netted a grid premium of $57 per head and their first Red Angus GridMaster award. The steers have received six Red Angus GridMaster awards for carcass quality and the 2005 Angus America Outstanding Cow-Calf Producer for highest grid premiums.


Utilizing a combination of superior genetics and aggressive management, they continually strive to top the best set of steers produced on their ranch. Currently, the bar is set with the 2008 steers: 171 head, 95% Choice, 76% premium products, 30% Yield Grades (YG) 1 and 2, 6% YG 4.


The Red Angus Association of America is proud to nominate Durheim Ranch.


E. Roen Ranches, Knights Ferry, Calif.

Owner: Erik O. Roen
Manager: Paul Roen

Located in Calpine, Knights Ferry and LeGrand, Calif., E. Roen Ranches operates three operations under the partnership of Sierra Valley Ranch. The enterprise has been in production for more than 15 years and has focused on producing beef that is in demand by both industry and consumer. The Roens achieve this by breeding their 2,000 head of English-based cows to Lim-Flex bulls and tracking female production and beef product results.


Based on available feed sources, cows calve in the fall in the Sierra Valley and then are shipped as pairs to the San Joaquin Valley to graze during the winter grass season. Calves are then weaned in the spring and grown on improved pasture ground in the Sierra Valley. Calves that aren’t retained are then sold through Superior Livestock Video Auction with the assistance of Jim Davis for fall delivery as yearlings. Understanding the demand for expanded market opportunities, the Roens raise calves to work in a certified or non-hormone treated cattle (NHTC) program.


Jim Davis of Superior said that of the more than 500,000 head that he had shipped, the Roen’s 2010 calf crop was the best set of yearlings. The Roens have placed great emphasis on collecting feeding and carcass data from buyers to aid in bull selection, because they realize that the beef industry changes and so should their selection.


They take great pride in serving as stewards of the land, by incorporating extensive water management and conservation plans. The multi-generation enterprises of Sierra Valley Ranch are environmental and beef industry leaders.


E. Roen Ranches is proudly nominated by the North American Limousin Foundation (NALF).



Larson Angus Ranch, Sharon Springs, Kan.

Owners/Managers: Dan and Becky Larson

Larson Angus Ranch is located 14 miles south of Wallace in Northwest Kansas. The ranch is in close proximity to large commercial cattle feeders and processing plants.  They have about 10,000 acres of farm and grassland.


The cow herd originally started as a Hereford x Angus herd, then Hereford x Simmental. After a while, this breeding program caused the cow herd to lose uniformity. At that point, they decided to revamp their breeding program and build it around a registered Angus cow herd, as they believed the Angus breed had the most trouble-free traits to offer.


In 1988, they bought their first registered Angus cows. Since that time, they have grown their operation to 600 spring-calving cows and 40 fall-calving cows. In addition to their commercial herd, they have a seedstock and farming business. They have an annual bull sale where they market around 100 bulls and offer a select group of registered heifers. They retain 100-150 replacement heifers. About 70% of the calves in their seedstock operation will not make the cut for purebred seedstock and, therefore, will be age- and source-verified and finished at the ranch. All their finished calves are shipped to U.S. Premium Beef (USPB), of which they are founding members. All carcass data is obtained on their calves. They do not sell very many replacement females as they get more premiums through harvesting the heifers than selling them for replacement individuals.


The Kansas Livestock Association (KLA) is proud to nominate Larson Angus Ranch.



Leavitt Lake Ranches, Vina, Calif.

Owners/Managers: Darrell & Callie Wood, Ramsey Wood, and Dallice Wood

The Leavitt Lake Ranches is a family-owned business that is a certified organic cow-calf and yearling operation. It has a winter-calving herd and a summer-calving herd. A benefit of these two calving dates is to have a year-round supply of marketable cattle for organic grass-fed meat sales. Weaning weights are 650 lb.-750 lb. All pasture and hay needs are raised on the ranches. After calves are weaned and backgrounded at the Leavitt feeding facility, they go back on pasture until they are harvested at approximately 1,000 lb.


Leavitt Lake Ranches manages about 700 cows that include a registered Angus herd as well as the Angus-cross commercial herd. The Woods raise their own registered Angus bulls that are selected for grass-finished efficiency. The winter range is located in Tehama County in the annual grasslands of the Vina Plains and the summer ranch is in the scenic high-elevation meadows of Lassen County.


Darrell and Callie started buying cows after being married in 1981. They leased property initially and when they found property they could afford, they took a chance and bought it.  Their first ranch was in Lassen County and had once belonged to Darrell’s great, great grandfather Benjamin Leavitt. This was the beginning of Leavitt Lake Ranches. Son Ramsey returned to the ranch after college in 2005 and daughter Dallice followed in 2007.  Everyone has a hand in the management of the operation, which includes 11,000 acres of leased ground, 3,600 acres of deeded land, and BLM grazing permits.


Leavitt Lake Ranches is proudly nominated by the California BCIA.


Quinn Cow Co., Chadron, Neb.

Owners/Managers:  Reuben and Connee Quinn

Reuben and Connee Quinn started Quinn Cow Co. as a commercial cow-calf operation in 1974 with the purchase of 50 Simmental x Angus crossbred heifers. The ranch is located primarily on leased land on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota as well as Dawes County in northwestern Nebraska. Currently, Angus x Simmental cows are bred to Angus, Simmental and Angus x Simmental composite bulls to calve in the spring. The goal is to produce a cow with high output and relatively low inputs in a challenging environment compromised by high-selenium and sulfate levels in the water and grass.


Depending heavily on EPDs for selecting sires with calving ease and moderate milk yet above average growth traits, the Quinns require a cow that produces excellent replacements as well as high-performing feeder cattle. Calves are retained through the feedlot phase and typically sold on a carcass merit basis. Feedlot performance and detailed carcass data have been collected on the calf crop for more than 15 years.


Thirty percent of the mature cows, all of the replacement heifers and second-calf heifers are synchronized and bred artificially. Individual cow records and ranch production are documented for continual management improvement. Measured areas include reproductive performance, weaning percentage per cow exposed, and annual cow cost by line item. A network of experts, in various industry disciplines, are regularly consulted to achieve the Quinns' goals of profitability and production criteria.


The Nebraska Cattlemen is proud to nominate the Quinn Cow Co.


Silver Spur Ranch, Encampment, Wyo.

Cheramie Viator

Silver Spur Ranch has operations in Wyoming, Colorado and New Mexico. The headquarters ranch in Encampment, Wyo., dates back to the 1950s with Charolais cattle and 1940s with Hereford cattle. The Silver Spur-owned Bell and TO Ranches in New Mexico are two of the most historical ranches in the country and date back to the 1800’s. 


Today the Silver Spur Ranch cow herd includes more than 13,000 mother cows. A large percentage of calves are retained through the feeding process and sold as “All Natural” or non-hormone treated cattle. Replacement females for both the commercial and registered herds are predominantly selected from within the herd.


The Silver Spur’s seedstock herd is comprised of registered Charolais, Red Angus, Angus and Hereford cattle. In recent years, they have added a Charolais x Red Angus composite, called Rangefires, to the herd. Commercial herds are either Angus- or Red Angus-based. Charolais, Angus, Red Angus and Rangefire bulls are used in terminal and replacement rotations.


The Silver Spur Ranch encompasses vast geographic challenges and variations. Because of this, it is vital for their cow herd to be moderate in size, forage-efficient, altitude-adaptable, sound and fertile.  At the same time, offspring must have the ability to gain and perform in the feedlot and on the rail.


The Silver Spur Ranch is proudly nominated by the American-International Charolais Association.


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