Investing in the Future

Colorado Livestock Association Invests in Next Generation of Beef Leaders

Investing in the next generation comes naturally to livestock producers. For Colorado Livestock Association (CLA), that investment includes helping to train future industry leaders like Christine Gabel, Gabel Cattle, LLC.

Raised on a diversified livestock operation in Eaton, CO, Gabel represented CLA on the 2018 Young Cattlemen’s Conference (YCC). Now in its 39th year, YCC is designed to develop the next generation of ranchers, beef producers, and advocates. The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) hosts the program, which takes participants sponsored by state and breed associations on a ten day tour of the beef industry.

Given her experience and involvement in many facets of the beef community, Gabel was a natural choice for Colorado Livestock Association. After attending Butler College and Kansas State University for degrees in Animal Science and Business, she began working as a Strategic Account Manager for the Feedlot Division of Zoetis. Her family own and operate a SimAngus and commercial cow-calf operation and a commercial cattle feeding operation with a 22,000 head capacity.

The YCC group began its journey in Denver, with leadership development sessions, media training, and hands-on demonstrations of NCBA’s consumer marketing programs. The group toured Five Rivers Cattle Feeding’s Kuner Feedyard, the JBS processing plant and meet with the executive team at JBS Headquarters in Greeley.

Prior to leaving Denver, participants also stopped at one of Safeway’s flagship stores to learn more about beef marketing at the retail level, giving the group an in-depth understanding of every aspect of the beef supply chain.

“We really strive to give participants the full view of the industry,” said NCBA President-Elect Jennifer Houston, who also participated in the tour. “We know and expect that these individuals are going to go back to their state associations and become leaders within those organizations that are so important to the success of the beef community.”
The YCC group then traveled to Chicago for stops at the new McDonald’s global headquarters office. And a behind-the-scenes look at the manufacturing facilities of OSI, Inc., one of the nation’s premier beef patty manufacturers.

The 2018 YCC class wrapped up in Washington, D.C., where participants learned about the impacts of public policy on their operations. After an in-depth briefing from NCBA’s lobbyists and policy experts, participants took to Capitol Hill, visiting more than 200 congressional offices to advocate for industry. The 2019 National Cattlemen’s Beef Association Young Cattlemen’s Conference will be held May 29 through June 7.

Colorado Livestock Association is a proud supporter of the Young Cattlemen’s Conference. CLA member’s who are interested in participating in the conference should contact the CLA office.