David Breiner, Alma, Kan., was announced as the new president of the American Hereford Association (AHA) during the Annual Membership Meeting in Kansas City, Mo., Oct. 29.
David began his Hereford career in 1972 when he helped start Mill Creek Ranch, Alma, Kan., after graduating from Kansas State University.
“It is a humbling feeling to be elected president of the American Hereford Association,” David says. “It is also an exciting experience for me to be a part of the Hereford breed’s successes, our breed’s increase in demand, and to help our membership reap the rewards that our breed has to offer the cattle industry. I look forward to working with the Board of Directors, the AHA staff and our membership to promote the Hereford breed.”
Currently, David, along with Bob Moore of Pied Piper Farms, operates the ranch, which consists of 200 registered Hereford and Angus females along with 300 commercial females utilized in an embryo transfer (ET) program.
Mill Creek Ranch has participated in the National Reference Sire Program and Whole Herd Total Performance Records (TPR™) program since the early ’70s as well as the National Hereford Feedout.
David served as the AHA vice president in 2011 as well as chairman of the show and sale committee and was a member of the executive, breed improvement and building committees.
Cliff Copeland, Nara Visa, N.M., was selected to serve as the 2012 AHA vice president. Cliff currently co-manages Copeland and Sons LLC with his wife, Pat; parents, Clifford and Barbara; and Cliff and Pat’s son, Matt.
Copeland and Sons was established in 1943 and cattle are its only business. The family’s 500-head herd includes 90 registered Hereford females, 80 cows used to produce club calves and 330 commercial Hereford cows.
During his youth, Cliff was a member of the American Junior Hereford Association board and served as president. Committed to helping the breed, Cliff has helped with Certified Hereford Beef (CHB®) promotions in his area. Cliff is currently chairman of the AHA marketing committee.
Completing their terms on the AHA Board were outgoing president, John Woolfolk, Columbia, Tenn.; Jerry Huth, Oakfield, Wis.; and Jim Milligan, Kings, Ill.
Delegates elected three new Directors during the membership meeting. Fred Larson, Spring Valley, Wis.; David Trowbridge, Tabor, Iowa; and Eric Walker, Morrison, Tenn., will serve four-year terms on the 12-member Board.
A Hereford breeder since birth, Fred Larson of Spring Valley, Wis., began his involvement with the Hereford breed as a junior member participating in the junior national and other Hereford youth activities.
Larson Hereford Farms began in the 1870s as a diversified livestock farm. Registered Herefords were purchased in the 1940s. The third, fourth and fifth generations now make their livings by marketing 45 bulls and 35-50 females by private treaty annually and feeding out 70 steers. The Larson family hosted the Genetic Selection Sale in 2011. They maintain an inventory of 230 registered Hereford breeding females. Several hundred acres of corn, soybeans and oats, as well as all of the hay, are grown for feed and as cash crops.
The Larsons have been performance testing since the 1960s. They incorporated artificial insemination (AI) into their breeding program in the ’70s and embryo transfer (ET) in 1983. The Larsons’ No. 1 goal is to provide their customers with problem-free breeding stock that will surpass performance expectations in practical conditions.
Fred has served several terms as a director and president of the Indianhead Polled Hereford Association and the WHA.
He and his wife, Lori, have been Wisconsin junior advisors, and he served on the executive committee for the 2005 JNHE. Their children have participated in 13 junior nationals/JNHEs, and they have exhibited animals across North America and participated in many local, state and national association sponsored sales.
Fred is a lifelong member of the Spring Valley Congregational Church and is a several time board of trustees and board of deacons member and chairman. Fred has served as Spring Lake Township Land Use commissioner and a 4-H club beef leader and is a 15-year member of Pierce County Animal Livestock Committee and several time chairman.
Fred and Lori have two sons, Justin and Easten.
David Trowbridge, Tabor, Iowa, has been involved in all facets of the beef industry. In 2004 David and Mike England started Beef Resources Partnership (BRP) with a few Felton cows after a lifetime of being in the cattle business. David has been manager at Gregory Feedlots Inc. since graduating from University of Nebraska in 1977.
The BRP herd includes 50 to 60 cows split between a fall and spring herd. BRP maintains a herd of moderate-frame cows with excellent udders and strives to maintain a young herd with a high percentage of Dams of Distinction.
David and Mike ultrasound test all animals, collect carcass data on all culls, feed efficiency test all of their breeding stock and have been doing some DNA testing. BRP is a Gold TPR Breeder and its marketing goals are to produce the highest performance animals possible with the greatest carcass values in the Hereford breed.
David serves on the Iowa Hereford Breeders Association board and has been active in many organizations involved in the cattle business and cattle feeding in Iowa. He is currently an Iowa Cattleman’s Association director.
He has traveled to several states as a representative of the Tri-County Steer Carcass Futurity and Gregory Feedlots to speak about the beef industry, cattle feeding and cattle management at cattlemen’s meetings and commercial producers’ seminars. David has worked with commercial and seedstock producers to maximize the performance and value of their cattle.
At Gregory Feedlot David was recognized by Certified Angus Beef (CAB) as the Quality Assurance Officer of the Year in 2004, and under his management Gregory Feedlot was awarded the CAB Small Feedlot Partner of the Year in 2002 and the Progressive Partner of the Year 2011.
David and his wife, Mary, have three sons, two daughters and five grandchildren.
Eric Walker of Morrison, Tenn., inherited the love of the Hereford breed from his father, Sam Walker, who was a weighmaster at the local stockyard and raised commercial Hereford cattle. In 1981 Eric purchased his first registered Hereford, and now, 30 years later, he owns and manages a herd of 125 registered Hereford cows.
He has utilized AI since 1982 and ET since 1989. He has collected ultrasound data since 1999. His farm has hosted 16 production sales since 1986. The Walker program has bred class winners and champions at shows on a local, state and national level. Walker genetics have been sold in 32 states, as well as Canada, Mexico and the United Kingdom.
The Walker cow herd utilizes approximately 500 acres of his total 1,100-acre farming operation. The remaining 600 acres are used for the production of shade and ornamental trees and shrubs that supply products for Walker Nursery Co. Eric is the sole proprietor of Walker Nursery Co., and he sells and markets his products to the landscape and retail green industry, shipping to 35 different states.
Eric is a member of the Middle and East Tennessee Hereford Associations, as well as a member of the Tennessee and Warren County Cattlemen’s Associations. He has been a director and president of the Tennessee Polled Hereford Association. He has served twice on the AHA nominating committee and has been a delegate to the AHA Annual Membership Meeting for several years. He is also a past president of the Tennessee Nursery and Landscape Association and currently serves as secretary for the Regional Planning Commission Board for the town of Morrison.
Eric and his family — wife, Rhonda; son, Cody; and a stepson, Casey — are members of the Central Church of Christ in McMinnville.
The American Hereford Association, with headquarters in Kansas City, Mo., is one of the largest U.S. beef breed associations. The not-for-profit organization along with its subsidiaries — Certified Hereford Beef (CHB) LLC, Hereford Publications Inc. (HPI) and American Beef Records Association (ABRA) — provides programs and services for its members and their customers, while promoting the Hereford breed and supporting education, youth and research. For more information about the Association, visit Hereford.org.