October 28, 2021
Front row (l to r): Bruce Everhart president, Waldron, Ind.; Bill Goehring, vice president, Libertyville, Iowa; Craig Beran, Claflin, Kan.; Andrew Matheny, Mayslick, Ky.; Becky King-Spindle, Moriarty, N.M., Whitey Hunt, Madison,Ga.; and Jack Ward, AHA executive vice president. Back row (l to r): Wyatt Agar, Thermopolis, Wyo.; Jerome Ollerich, Clearfield, S.D.; Chad Breeding, Miami, Texas; Lou Ellen Harr, Jeromesville, Ohio; and Travis McConnaughy, Wasola, Mo. Not pictured: Bob Schaffer, Spotsylvania Courthouse, Va.
Bruce Everhart, Waldron, Ind., was announced as the new president of the American Hereford Association (AHA) during the Annual Membership Meeting Oct. 23 in Kansas City, Mo.
Everhart and his wife, Shoshanna, own and operate Everhart Herefords, a more than 50-year-old purebred operation consisting of 25 head. The operation sells bulls, steers and heifers to commercial cattlemen and junior members in the Midwest and utilizes grass and wood pastures not suitable for corn and soybean production. The herd was built on junior heifers purchased annually from Wiese and Sons over a 15-year period. Breeding some of the best females from this iconic herd to some of the most elite bulls of the breed has produced champions at state and national shows. The highlights of the Everhart program are raising the reserve supreme heifer at the Indiana State Fair and the reserve national champion female at the Junior National Hereford Expo.
Everhart retired in 2018 after a 40-year career in agricultural banking. He managed a team in the Midwest with Wells Fargo Bank. Everhart is also a board member and past president of the Indiana Hereford Association.
Everhart also serves on the Rush Shelby Energy cooperative board and is a member of the Indiana State Fair Commission. He and his wife of 41 years, Shoshanna, have two children — son, Blake, and his wife, Ashley, and daughter, Jordan, and her husband, Brian — and six grandchildren.
“I am honored to lead the Association into a year of possibilities,” Everhart said. “The Hereford breed is positioned with innovative members who strive to breed quality cattle that will produce a premium product for the breed industry. As a lifelong Hereford breeder, I have deep respect for the past and a strong belief in the future. I look forward to visiting with members and industry leaders to address their questions and learn ideas to continue propelling our breed forward.”
Goehring selected vice president
Selected to serve as the 2021 vice president was Bill Goehring, Libertyville, Iowa. The Goehring family began in the Hereford business in 1973. Goehring Herefords’ registered cow herd consists of 150 spring-calving cows and 50 fall-calving cows, and their commercial Angus herd includes 400 spring-calving cows and heifers. The Goehrings breed 100 registered heifers every year as well as 450 black and black-whiteface heifers for their annual sale, held the first Wednesday in December.
Additionally, they background 800 to 1,000 steers and finish 500 cattle at custom yards. Bill grew up on a small farm in southeast Iowa. He graduated from Iowa State University with a degree in animal science and then attended the World Wide College of Auctioneering. In August 1986, Bill’s family purchased a local livestock market in Keosauqua, Iowa.
At the time the market needed a lot of work, so their first priority was building a feeder pig sale. The sale grew quickly, and for more than 15 years, the Goehrings sold 1,000 to 2,000 pigs weekly. When the hog business consolidated, they began to push their cattle sale, and through relationships built in the feeder pig sale they were able to gain strength in the competitive cattle market. They now market 40,000 head annually in addition to market hogs, sheep, goats and hay.
As the sale grew, so did the Goehring family — Bill and his wife, Becky, have four sons — Curtis (Lauren), Lucas (Cody), Ted (Rachelle) and Colby (Hannah) — and one granddaughter. Growing up, Bill was very active in junior leadership. He held positions on the board of the Iowa Junior Hereford Association, where his parents served as advisors for most of his junior career. He also served on the American Junior Hereford Association board of directors. Bill went on to serve on the board of directors for the Iowa Hereford Association and was president for two years. In 2013 and 2015, he had the honor of being asked to judge the national Hereford show in the Yards at the National Western Stock Show.
Additionally, Bill is an active member of both the Iowa and the National Livestock Marketing Associations and served as the Iowa state president for two years. He has been a judge at the World Livestock Auctioneer Championship and has traveled to Washington, D.C., with the Livestock Marketing Association. He also serves on the Iowa Beef Council.
Delegates elected three new directors during the membership meeting. Chad Breeding, Miami, Texas; Lou Ellen Harr, Jeromesville, Ohio; and Travis McConnaughy, Wasola, Mo., will serve four-year terms on the 12-member Board. Completing their terms on the AHA Board were outgoing president Mark St. Pierre, El Nido, Calif.; Nate Frederickson, Spearfish, S.D.; and Joe Waggoner, Carthage, Miss.
Chad Breeding of Miami, Texas, was raised working on his family’s registered Hereford operation, B&C Cattle Co. When he was 4 years old he was already riding horseback with his granddad, Earl, checking the herd. After graduating high school in 1988, he went to college. After completing his degree at Texas A&M, Chad returned home to the family operation, which markets about 100 Hereford bulls and 50 replacement females annually.
Chad’s love for the Hereford breed flourished when he returned home, as he started breeding cows and working in the show barn. Chad’s knowledge, gleaned from his father, William Breeding, gave him the ability to compete with show cattle on a national level, while also producing beef cattle with the genetic merit the market demands. Through the continued use of artificial insemination (AI) and embryo transfer (ET), the B&C brand is trusted across the country for sound, functional cattle that work in the showring and excel in the pasture. While they sell a few show heifers, the majority of their cattle are sold to the commercial producer, mostly to Brahman cowmen who produce the sought after F1 known as the maternal Queen of the South.
Chad and his wife, Erin, have five children — Austin, 21; Blayke, 19; Wyatt and Lillian, 4; and Blair, 2. Fatherhood emphasized the importance of family and the value of passing down honesty, an ethic of hard work and a better life. After returning to Miami, a small town in the Texas Panhandle, Chad became active in the community. He has served on the stock show board since 2002 and as chairman since 2010. He was elected to the city council in November of 2005. He has been the Miami mayor since 2009. He also serves on the board of trustees of the First Christian Church. Chad is an active member of the Texas Hereford Association, serving on the board since 2011, including stints as president in 2016 and 2017.
Lou Ellen Harr
Lou Ellen Harr, along with her husband, Jeff, and daughter, Keayla, own and operate J&L Cattle Services in Jeromesville, Ohio. The operation started in 1996 when Lou Ellen’s former employer, Big T Ranch, was sold, and one of the farms was purchased. Originally a custom fitting service with a handful of cows, the operation has evolved to about 100 females, including 70 registered Hereford cows, a handful of registered Angus cows and commercial cows used as recipients for their ET program. J&L custom raises and collects data on approximately 100 head of heifers for purebred clients.
A small feedlot completes the enterprise with the fat cattle marketed on the rail to a source-verified program demanding Choice and Prime carcasses. The family also farms hay and row crop ground. Cattle carrying the JLCS prefix are marketed through a semi-annual sale, the J&L and Guests Sale. Since the first sale in 2005, cattle have been marketed into more than 20 states and Canada. Growing up in Missouri on a small farm with a few Hereford cows, Lou Ellen attended the University of Missouri and Kansas State University to obtain a master’s degree in reproductive physiology. She then went to work for Hereford breeders in Missouri and Virginia before managing the show and sale cattle at Big T Ranch in Ohio.
In addition to managing the day-to-day operations at J&L, Lou Ellen works more than 10 purebred Hereford sales per year where she helps sell cattle on a commission basis. Lou Ellen also teaches at the Ohio State University Agriculture Technical Institute each fall where she educates college students about livestock evaluation and selection. Lou Ellen and Jeff have helped numerous young people get involved in the Hereford breed and are strong advocates of the NJHA. Lou Ellen is a lifetime member of the AHA, having previously served on the nominating committee. As a director on the Buckeye Polled Hereford Association, she served on the committee that joined the state’s polled and horned Hereford associations. Lou Ellen currently serves on the Ohio Beef Council, overseeing the state’s checkoff dollars. J&L Cattle Services was named Seedstock Producer of the Year by the Ohio Cattlemen’s Association in 2018.
Travis McConnaughy was born and raised on a seedstock Hereford operation previously owned by his grandparents, Calvin and Jean Watson. Travis and wife, Sarah, own and operate the family’s ranch, which is now known as WMC Cattle Company. They have expanded the ranch to include 1,300 acres, approximately 300 Hereford cows and 150 commercial cows. WMC Cattle Company is a progressive program that collects carcass ultrasound measurements and actual data on their purebred calves, in addition to using the latest technology, such as AI, ET and genomics.
From 2001-2006, Travis was self-employed in the construction field. He returned home in 2006 to help his grandfather on the ranch. Travis and Sarah married in 2011 and purchased the ranch, which had 66 Hereford cows at the time.
WMC Cattle Company hosted its first annual female production sale in 2019 — the Ladies of the Ozarks. Next came the first annual WMC Bull and Commercial female sale in 2020. Travis manages the ranch as a business. He demands high performance from his cattle with minimal inputs. His high standards, open mind and willingness to change stack the odds toward the operation’s financial sustainability for generations to come. Currently, the next generation includes Jett, 7 and Watson, 6. WMC Meat Co., a small meat sales business, is the ranch’s most recent addition. It opened another avenue for the ranch to capitalize on the quality it produces.
Travis is the current president of the Missouri Hereford Association; he was vice-president the previous two years and has been on the board six years. In 2020, WMC Cattle Company was recognized as the Missouri Purebred Breeder of the Year. Beyond the Hereford scene, Travis is a fifth-year member of the Ozark County Soil & Water board. He is also serving his second term as president and his fifth year as a board member of the Farm Service Agency.