(LEFT) The North Dakota Stockmen’s Association Board of Directors is composed of 24 board members (four from each of six districts), as
well as a four-member executive committee, including the president, vice president, immediate past president and executive vice president.
The leaders are grassroots cattle producers. (RIGHT) The Tomorrow’s Top Hands Beef Leadership Summit is a multi-day leadership development
and career exploration experience for young beef enthusiasts ages 14 to 20. The event is held every other October.
The NDSA has a voice at the state capital and the nation’s
capitol and is looked to as a trusted and credible
source for beef industry information. Here, NDSA Executive
Vice President Julie Ellingson and NDSA Immediate
Past President Warren Zenker share North Dakota cattle
industry priorities with Sen. Kevin Cramer, R-ND.
The NDSA carries its members’ voices to
the halls of the state capital and all the
way to Washington, D.C. Here, John Pfaff, a
member from New Salem, represented the
organization in the Beltway as the North
Dakota representative on the Young Cattlemen’s
staff and officers. But our directives
and direction will always be set by our
membership. We work at their behest.
The world is run by those who not
only show up, but sign up, and we
need your voice to continue to help
us band together and make the best
future we can for our industry. It’s a
challenge to be successful, particularly
at the legislative level as individuals,
but when the rubber meets the
road, together as an association we
can get the job done.
WR encourages producers to have a voice
by being active and involved in an association
that aligns with your needs and ideals.
our legislature, so people working in
those response positions would have
clear directives on how cattle ranches
to zoos were different in terms of how
we operated and what we needed to be
able to do in order to care for our animals.
The ability to get common sense
laws in place in our state to protect our
industry was a huge win for us.
WR Where is NDSA headed?
JE Long-term, like most organizations,
we hope to increase our membership
numbers so that we can amplify the
voice of our beef producers when
it comes to policy decision making.
We want to continue to help people
understand the cattle industry’s value
to the state and our economy, along
with improving the understanding
our customers have about what we do,
and why we do it. Ultimately, it’s about
communicating how we are providing
a safe, healthy, wholesome product for
them to enjoy, and our desire to connect
them to what we do.
WR What is something unique
JE We have a ‘Tomorrow’s Top
Hands Beef Leadership Summit’ we
are really proud of. Youth age 14-20
can apply to be part of a two and a
half day-long career exploration and
leadership development program to
help them become aware of all the
career opportunities there are in the
beef industry. We have this creamof
the-crop group of young people
who are getting leadership training,
listening to incredible speakers, taking
tours of different segments of our
industry and allowing them to see
how many directions they can go with
their careers, both within
production or industry jobs.
This is an age group that
sometimes gets missed and
we want to get them excited
about being involved. We
need their diversity and representation
because we want
to make sure we are serving
every niche in our industry.
WR What would you say
to someone thinking about
JE NDSA is the time-tested,
trusted voice for the cattle
industry in our state. We are
a robust board of directors,
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