Western Montana Ranchers Elected to Stockgrowers Board of Directors

Race King of Dillon joins the MSGA Board as Western District Director

Race King of Dillon joins the MSGA Board as Western District Director

At the 130th Annual Montana Stockgrowers Association Convention and Trade Show last month, members elected two new ranchers to the MSGA Board of Directors. Race King of Dillon will join the 13-member Board for a two-year term, representing the Western Montana district; a seat previously held by Ray Marxer of Twin Bridges. Bryan Mussard of Dillon was elected at 1st Vice President.

Race King manages the LaCense ranch near Dillon. He and his wife, Rochelle, have four children, Cache (22), Carly (20), Carson (18) and Coby (14).

“My wife and I were both raised on livestock operations and we desired the opportunity to raise our children in that same environment,” says Race. “We feel truly blessed to have been able to spend our entire lives working with livestock and the great people in our communities. I’m grateful to be able to work alongside my family and watch them develop a passion for this great business and the way of life it provides us all.”

When asked what are the major challenges the beef industry will face in the next 10 years, Race recognized the ranching community’s need to focus on federal regulations, resource management and employee development.

Bryan Mussard was elected as first Vice President on the Stockgrowers Board of Directors. Bryan and wife Marcia have raised six children and operate Reminisce Angus near Dillon. Bryan has been actively involved in the commercial feeding business for 40 years. Today, his operation weans, backgrounds, and develops cattle, collecting genetic data for customers through the Tracker marketing program. Bryan also manages ranches through the Big West Management Program.

Bryan Mussard, Second Vice President

Bryan Mussard of Dillon was elected as 1st Vice President on the MSGA Board

Ray Marxer of Twin Bridges is the outgoing representative for the Western District on the MSGA Board of Directors. Marxer was elected in 2010 and has represented ranchers in Western Montana for two consecutive terms. Ray, along with his wife Sue, worked on the Matador Ranch for 37 years, where he retired as manager in 2011. Ray remains active in the livestock community through consulting and involvement in area youth and fair programs.

Other changes to the Montana Stockgrowers Board of Directors include Tucker Hughes of Stanford completing his term as President. Gene Curry of Valier was elected as President, while Fred Wacker of Miles City joins the MSGA officer team as second Vice President and Jess Drange of Ismay joins as Director, representing Southeastern Montana ranchers.

The Montana Stockgrowers Association meets annually to discuss and vote on policy measures, which guide the Association in representing its members on local, state and federal issues. To learn more about Stockgrowers programs or membership, visit mtbeef.org or contact the office in Helena, (406) 442-3420.

Communication Key For Association Policies

Bryan MussardMSGA has taken the lead on several issues this year and has done a lot of promotion for the beef industry in Montana. Our directors are well informed on current issues at hand. Please feel free to contact any of them in your area, if you have any concerns or if there is something going on in your area that needs to be brought to their attention.

With that said, communication is the key to the livestock industry’s success in the future. We started AMP (Affiliate Mentorship Program) this year to communicate more often and to stay better informed as Montana’s premier beef cattle association.

If you have resolutions you are considering presenting at the annual convention, it is imperative that you share it now with as many folks as possible. This will do several things. First, you will find out if MSGA already has policy on the issue you are concerned with. Second, it can be considered among fellow members to test the merit of it and possibly change some of the wording, if needed. The last and best thing this accomplishes is that by the time it is presented at convention, more people are aware of it and understand the issue. The resolution then has a better chance of becoming MSGA policy and the board can take action on it.

This is the type of communication that makes a better organization. When we communicate effectively, fewer assumptions are made, better outcomes are achieved and we become a stronger voice to promote our product and preserve our heritage.

One issue to think about is the possibility of the USDA stepping into the Beef Check-off as business partners. This is a result of the lack of congruency among the industry organizations. Secretary Vilsack feels compelled to write his own check off program to run alongside of our current one. It is a classic example of how governments will control people who can’t seem to get along and find their own solutions. It is time to set aside our minor differences about the check off and stand together as an industry or we are going to be paying a much higher rate in the future with less results than we had prior to the check off’s beginning in 1985.

I am adamantly opposed to the USDA having more control over our check off program and I am adamantly committed to meeting with key industry leaders to help stifle this move. MSGA’s leadership is already at work on this issue. Please take time to discuss this issue at your local affiliate meeting and we will have a good discussion about it at convention. We need to know where our membership stands on this issue, now.

Remember, the world is run by those who show up, but it is ultimately shaped by those who speak up.

Enjoy the rest of this historical fall in the Beef business and have a Gorgeous day!

–Bryan Mussard, Dillon, MSGA 2nd Vice President

Reminisce Angus Ranch Production Sale 2011

AUDIO SLIDE SHOW: Watch and hear Angus bulls being sold at the Mussard Family sale in Dillon, Montana. There is also a speech from NCBA president, Bill Donald and some dancing at the end of the night, after a great sale. To see photos from the sale, head over to the Montana Stockgrowers Association’s Facebook page: click here.