Gelbvieh Association honors members
Ken Thorstenson of Selby, S.D., was inducted posthumously into the American Gelbvieh Association Hall of Fame for 2018.
The induction took place during the awards banquet at the 47th Annual AGA National Convention in Wichita, Kan. Ken’s son Vaughn Thorstenson, daughter-in-law Wendy, and granddaughter Gina were present at the awards ceremony to accept the award on behalf of Ken. Lori Maude, Hermosa, S.D., presented the award to the Thorstenson family. The AGA Hall of Fame recognizes individuals for their lasting contribution to the growth and development of the Gelbvieh breed. That contribution is through the influence of cattle they have bred, breed promotion efforts and leadership provided to the association. Ken Thorstenson was among the first cattlemen in the U.S. to use imported Gelbvieh semen and seedstock to expand his herd. Thorstenson Gelbvieh was established in 1975 when they began selling bulls private treaty. The operation held its first annual bull sale at St. Onge Livestock in St. Onge, S.D., in 1982. Throughout the years, Thorstenson purchased many elite herd sires that brought great success to the ranch, not only for the Gelbvieh herd, but also for the Angus herd lending to the great foundation for the ranch’s Balancer cowherd. Today, Thorstenson Gelbvieh, also known as Lazy TV Ranch, has continued to build on Thorstenson’s legacy since his passing in 2010. The operation will host its 37th annual bull sale at the ranch this March where they will offer 200 Gelbvieh, Angus and Balancer bulls.
Adam Sindt of Franklin, Neb., was honored as the AGA Commercial Producer of the Year. Sindt was joined by Aly, his wife, at the banquet. Stuart Jarvis of Bar Arrow Cattle Company, Phillipsburg, Kan., presented Sindt with the award, which honors individuals who use Gelbvieh and Balancer genetics in progressive commercial cattle operations and are proactive in their promotion of the Gelbvieh and Balancer breed. Sindt and his father, Steve, run approximately 450 head of commercial cows and feed out all of their own calves. In addition, they also raise corn, soybeans and alfalfa. The operation started buying Gelbvieh and Balancer bulls five years ago to improve the performance of the calves out of their British-based cowherd. Sindt selects bulls based on terminal traits, as their goal is to raise cattle that perform well in the feedyard and on the rail. Because the operation’s focus pinpoints feedyard performance and carcass quality traits, they choose to feed out all calves raised on the farm and purchase replacement females. The Sindts are one of the few producers in their area that finish out their own calves. This provides him with the information needed to make adjustments to his cowherd in order to make his calves more profitable in a feedyard setting. Sindt also said that finishing out his own calves gives him a chance to market their grain through the cattle. Last year, the Sindts sold their home-raised cattle on the grid where they finished 92.5 percent Choice and Prime with 90 percent Yield Grade 1,2, and 3.
Bob and Judy Prosser of Bar T Bar Ranches, Winslow, Ariz., were honored as the AGA Breeder of the Year for 2017. John Burbank of Seedstock Plus, St. Catharine, Mo., presented Bob Prosser with the award. The Prossers own and operate Bar T Bar Ranches, which covers 326,200 acres of private, state and Forest Service lands between Winslow and Happy Jack, Ariz. The operation consists of about 400 registered Balancer, Angus, and Gelbvieh females, 1,200 commercial cows and 800 replacement females. Bar T Bar Ranch sells around 200 bulls every April in their annual bull sale. All bulls are DNA tested and proven feed efficient. Bar T Bar utilizes individual feed efficiency testing with their on-the-ranch GrowSafe unit. The Prossers are committed to raising quality seedstock and quality beef for the consumer and they are dedicated to being stewards of the land. In 1993 the Diablo Trust was formed by the Prosser Family and the Metzger Family of Flying M Ranch to create a collaborative process for developing ideas to help protect open spaces and healthy habitats. Bob and Judy were awarded the 2016 Range Mangers of the Year by the Arizona Section Society of Range Management. Bar T Bar Ranch, Inc. has been a member of the AGA since 1984. Bob Prosser is a former AGA board member and is an active member of AGA committees, including the breed improvement committee. Bob Prosser was also awarded the 2017 Cattleman of the Year award by the Arizona Cattlemen’s Association.❖