Angus Producers Become Leaders at BLI


July 19, 2011




For more information contact:

Carrie Gilliam, American Angus Association public relations intern, at 816-383-5154 or or

Crystal Albers, assistant director of communications at 816-383-5100 or


PHOTOS: Photos available at or 816-383-5100.



Angus Producers Become Leaders at BLI

Fourth annual Beef Leaders Institute offers overarching look at the beef industry. 


Angus producers from 12 states gathered in Saint Joseph, Mo., on June 20-23 for the fourth annual Beef Leaders Institute (BLI). The educational event is hosted by the American Angus Association® and funded by the Angus Foundation.

The four-day learning opportunity is designed to give applicants, ages 25-45, a chance to meet with Association staff and industry representatives while networking with their peers in the Angus industry.

After tours and presentations of the American Angus Association® and its entities – Angus Genetics Inc. (AGI), the Angus Foundation, Certified Angus Beef (CAB) and Angus Productions Inc. (API) – the group traveled through eastern Nebraska and western Iowa for several in-depth tours of the beef production process, from feedlots to retail distributors.

Tour stops included, Gregory Feedlot, Tabor, Iowa.; Tyson, beef processing plant, Dakota City, Neb.; Whole Foods Market, grocery story, Omaha, Neb.; Cargill Meat Solutions, deli meat processing plant, Nebraska City, Neb.; Sysco, food distributor, Lincoln, Neb.; and Igenity/GeneSeek, genetics lab, Lincoln, Neb.

BLI participant Brien Dodson, Okemah, Okla., said the tours educated him about each facet of the industry and how he can improve his herd and his customer’s knowledge.

“I want to do more for the industry than just raise cattle, and the BLI program was a perfect way for me to get more involved and educated,” Dodson said.

Montana rancher and BLI participant, J.R. Lund, Grass Range, Mont., also enjoyed the opportunity to learn and see for the first time a major operating feedlot.

“The BLI program is a great way to see what agriculture is like in other parts of the country and where our calves go when they leave our operations,” Lund says. “I am starting my herd from scratch, and the BLI program made me more knowledgeable about the industry I am promoting.”

2011 Beef Leaders Institute participants include Andrew Maupin, Larkspur, Colo.; Chris Throne, Lexington, Ga; Dan Hanrahan, Winterset, Iowa; Michael Honold, Coon Rapids, Iowa; Chad L. Daugherty, Cerro Gordo, Ill.; Rob Fanning, Cordova, Ill.; Thomas Black, Warsaw, Mo.; Brian Meier, Jackson, Mo.; Albert Meyers, Oakville, Mo.; Justin Lund, Grass Range, Mont.; Cory Poser, Denton, Mont.; Dru Uden, Franklin, Neb.; Brien Dodson, Okemah, Okla.; Cody Edgar, Rockham, S.D.; Dustin Hurlbut, Clark, S.D.; Joseph McKellar, Mount Pleasant, Texas; Charles “Jason” Pratt, Atkins, Va.; Katy Kemp, Sun Prairie, Wis.

For more information about the American Angus Association or the Beef Leaders Institute, visit or call 816-383-5100.




Beef Advocacy Required

Participants of the American Angus Association®’s Beef Leaders Institute (BLI) are required to complete the Masters of Beef Advocacy (MBA) program, an online, six-course program designed to help beef producers and others become advocates for the beef industry. The MBA program is offered through the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) and funded by the beef checkoff.

BLI participant, Katy Kemp, Sun Prairie, Wis., grew up in the Angus industry and has tried to remain involved. “The MBA program reaffirmed the knowledge most of us learn by growing up and working in the agriculture industry,” Kemp says. “The program is a resource and tool to better communicate our knowledge and bridge the gap between producer and consumer.”

Participant Dustin Hurlbut, Raymond, S.D., also believes the MBA program is a great way to educate producers and promote agriculture to consumers.

“The material made me realize what producers take for granted when it comes to our knowledge base,” Hurlbut says. “We need to use our voices and tell people how we are doing everything possible to ensure safe, wholesome and nutritious beef.”

Visit for more information about BLI. To learn more about the MBA program or how to participate, visit



Eighteen Angus breeders from 12 states attended the American Angus Association's Beef Leaders Institute, June 20-23. Attending the four-day educational event were:(front row, from left) Chad Daugherty, Illinois; Jason Pratt, Virginia; Cory Poser, Montana; Joseph McKellar, Texas; Brian Meier, Missouri; Dan Hanrahan, Iowa; (second row) Katy Kemp, Wisconsin; (third row) Dru Uden, Nebraska; Justin “J.R.” Lund, Montana; Brien Dodson, Oklahoma; Cody Edgar, South Dakota; Albert Meyers, Missouri; (fourth row, from left) Chris Throne, Georgia; Tom Black, Missouri; Andrew Maupin, Colorado; (fifth row, from left) Dustin Hurlbut, South Dakota; Rob Fanning, Illinois; and Mike Honold, Iowa. BLI is sponsored by the Angus Foundation.


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