Remembering Willard Wolf
May 2, 2019
Willard Mark Wolf, 78, Spokane, Wash., passed away March 13.
Thank you to Katie Colyer, Crystal Clear Creations, for the video.
Willard and his brother, Gordon, were raised on the family’s commercial Hereford cattle ranch. He graduated from Elgin High School in 1958 and earned an FFA Junior Master Farmer’s Degree. Willard went on to graduate from Oklahoma State University with a bachelor’s degree in animal science and a minor in business law.
While attending college, Willard got his start buying and selling feeder and fat cattle at the Oklahoma City Stockyards. In 1963, he was hired by the Livestock Market News before being transferred to Washington, D.C., and later accepted a position with the Foreign Agricultural Service.
In 1968, Willard moved to Spokane and began working as the Northwest field representative for the American Hereford Association (AHA) — a position he held for 33 years. During that time he served as a consultant, marketer, researcher and promoter of the Hereford breed across the U.S., as well as Canada, Mexico and Australia. The “Willard Wolf Award” is given each December at the Reno show to an outstanding junior Hereford member.
He was former president of the Spokane County Cattlemen, served on committees with the Washington Cattlemen’s Association, was an active member of the Cattle Producers of Washington, served on the Spokane Junior Livestock Show board, and for more than 30 years he conducted educational programs as part of the Spokane Ag Expo/Pacific Northwest Farm Forum. Willard was inducted into the AHA Hall of Merit in 2005 and the National Livestock Marketeers Hall of Fame in 2007.
Willard officially retired from the AHA in 2001, but he never left the cattle industry. Willard stayed active in purchasing cattle for the Certified Hereford Beef® program and Crossroads Cattle Co. up until a few days before he passed.
Willard is survived by his wife, Patty; son, Bart Wolf; daughters, Wende (Lance) Wilber and Wendy Porter; his grandchildren, Ian and Claire Wilber; and his brother, Gordon (Jeannie) Wolf.