What Does Stockgrowers Do For Montana Ranching?

Ray Marxer Montana rancherBy Ray Marxer, Twin Bridges, MSGA Western District Director

How about this cattle market! Our district has had quite a winter and spring with a lot of variation in snow and rain. Most of the area has had lots of winter snow and cold and adequate spring rain. However, the southwestern portion had little snow and is lacking for moisture.

This is typical of our member driven organization. We all have our own challenges and sometimes the same ones, but they may affect each of us in a different way. Thus, the need for an organization like MSGA to help us all both understand each other’s point of view and come up with the best solutions for all. Recently Tucker Hughes, our President asked the directors for 3 things MSGA has done for the Montana ranching community. This is my reply:

1: I value the fact that MSGA is a member driven organization that is involved in many issues and is not made up of primarily (VICTIM) members. I liken this organization to bull selection for a sustainable profitable business. We do not concentrate on just one issue, but prioritize numerous important ones to be effective. Similar to using multiple traits in bull selection instead of just a couple.

2: MSGA provides a platform or opportunity for a sharing of ideas, concerns, and options among a very diverse group of people. We receive input from members, affiliates, staff and numerous segments of our industry, suppliers and consumers. A great deal of effort has been implemented this year to increase the involvement of our affiliate organizations and the members at the local level. What a great opportunity for a local affiliate to win a John Deere Gator through the Top Hand program!

3: MSGA staff is one of the most professional and effective organizational staffs I have been involved with. They do a great job of the everyday nuts and bolts operation of a complex organization plus they keep us updated and informed on the large scale issues that affect us all. Most of us do not take the time to think about things beyond our gate. That may have worked ok in the past but not now in this age of instant information. Our staff is ahead of the curve on the electronic information and is patiently dragging some of us along to be more effective. How about the newsletter in electronic form!

This is my fourth and final year on the board for MSGA and I value the time spent and the great folks I have gotten to know and work with. I encourage you all to get involved if you are not and help us to build membership and a stronger organization. For you Western district members, I challenge you to nominate some ranches for the Environmental Stewardship Award Program and submit some nominees to take my place on the board in December.

Membership in this organization is very affordable regardless of the size of your operation thanks to the new membership level created by your board for the operations with 1 to 60 head. Check for the details in coming months and on the website, mtbeef.org!

Hope you all have a great summer filled with safety, prosperity, and fun.

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