The Colorado Independent CattleGrowers Association invites you to celebrate another year of a successful and humble association. The Colorado Independent CattleGrowers Association (CICA) is celebrating 11 years with our annual convention in Hotchkiss, Colorado on July 15th & 16th.
We are very excited for this year’s convention but before we start bragging about what we have planned, we must first remember where we came from. The CICA began on June 5, 2005 in the front yard of the Muddy Valley Ranch. A group of local cattlemen created the Colorado Independent CattleGrowers Association. The CICA was built upon the belief of actively promoting policy that benefits present and future generations and positively affects the live cattle industry. The founders of the CICA believed in supporting cattle producers not only in Colorado but across America with financial, cultural, historical, and environmental interests. In 2005, the locals that started the organization believed in grassroots. They wanted a new organization that was as down-home and as independent as the people who volunteered to be there. They wanted no overpaid board members or executives. The cattlemen and cattlewomen from all over the state were frustrated because another well-known cattlemen’s organization didn’t know the issues and they didn’t represent the hardworking producers that were paying dues. Well, after hearing from over 60 producers throughout the state of Colorado that were just as dissatisfied as they were, the group that met at the Muddy Valley Ranch decided it was time for something new. It was time for an INDEPENDENT organization that cared about the future of the live cattle industry and the profitability of its producers.
Today, we are known as the fastest growing cattle association, however the Colorado Independent CattleGrowers Association has not reverted from our core values. We won’t stray from our grassroots but will continue with policy that matters to the “small guy”. We are and always will be a volunteer organization. We know the issues that affect today’s cattle ranchers because we are the neighbors next door. We are working beside them every day, through the same ups and downs in this ever changing industry. We are the ones that put the blood, sweat, and tears into our cattle herd just like the producers we represent. We know the issues that matter to the producers and we will always promote the policies that matter most to them. Janell Reid is currently serving as the treasurer for the CICA. She says, “CICA has given independent cattle growers a voice which has provided a huge impact on getting our issues out to the public and drawing in new and frustrated cattle growers like us.”
Even after eleven years, the Colorado Independent CattleGrowers Association is still sticking to its roots. We hope that you can join us on Friday and Saturday, July 15th and 16th, in celebrating who we are and the values that we abide by. The CICA Convention kicks off Friday with a tour of a ranch in Hotchkiss and then a delicious BBQ dinner to follow. Saturday is a full day of looking into important issues in the cattle industry. The CICA has also planned two very important speakers for Saturday. First, is Jillane Hixson. Ms. Hixson is from Landowners United in Lamar, Colorado and will be discussing conservation easements. She will be followed by Dr. Angus McIntosh presenting on property rights. Dr. McIntosh has an impressive awards resume with his work in property rights research and education, surface mining-reclamation, and range management. With over 16 years of working with the US Forest Service and as a Range Conservationist / Range Management Specialist for the NRCS, Dr. Angus McIntosh is an expert in private property rights on state, federal, and deeded lands. At the end of Saturday we will have dinner and as entertainment, Terry Nash, the Western Music Association 2013 Male Cowboy Poet of the Year. A rifle will be raffled this year. Raffle tickets can be purchased from any CICA Director.
The 2016 president of the Colorado Independent CattleGrowers Association is Lorene Bonds. She has attended every convention over the past 6 years and believes it is an invaluable experience. “Over the past 6 years, I have acquired more valuable information about our cattle industry, our property rights, environmental issues and the history and culture of our independent cattle men and women.” Another part of the CICA that Treasurer Reid loves is the friendships and endless opportunities that come with being an involved member, “I have met and became friends with many ranchers throughout our beautiful state and have also been given the opportunity to travel to locations throughout the state of Colorado that I have never been to before.”
Margaret Mead wrote, “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed it is the only thing that ever has.” As President Lorene Bonds says, “It is the Colorado Independent CattleGrower’s members that truly make a difference,”. We stand by that statement whole heartedly and hope to see you at our 11th Annual Convention in Hotchkiss, Colorado. As another year goes by we pray for a productive and profitable year for you all.
Submitted to BARN Media by:
Morgan Young, 2016 CICA Intern