Hundreds attend R-CALF annual convention

Jan 30, 2009
by WLJ
Hundreds attend R-CALF annual convention

More than 200 members and their families celebrated R-CALF USA’s 10th Annual Convention in Rapid City, SD, Jan. 23-24 at the Ramkota Hotel where it all started back in 1999. “This year, everything was very focused on R- CALF itself,” said R-CALF CEO Bill Bullard. “We did have some guest speakers during the meals, but most of our speakers were internal committee chairs or other active volunteers, and the mix was perfect.

“The comments that I received about the structure of the two-day convention were all quite positive, so we’ll likely continue with that format,” he continued.

“There was no tension because we all knew we were among friends and we are united for a common cause. We also were able to accomplish a great deal of business for the organization.

The event was exceptionally well run—smoother than others in the past.” Several policy proposals were brought to the floor during Saturday’s business session, and R-CALF staff will send out the ballots for voting members on or before March 12, according to R-CALF Membership Services Coordinator Laurel Masterson.

“Members took advantage of the shortened length of the convention, and this translated into more in attendance during the meetings, as well as during our business session where the policy development occurs,” Masterson said. The Saturday evening festivities included both a silent auction featuring more than 30 items, as well as a live auction, which between the two raised more than $5,000 for the organization.

Nebraska Member Vince Hulinksy, with Ag- West Feeds, donated a bronze statue titled “When Cowboys Take a Dare,” which was purchased by Wyoming Member Taylor Haynes for $1,050.

Missouri Member Dudley Butler, with Butler Farm & Ranch Law Group, PPLC, donated a refurbished Ryon saddle, which was purchased by South Dakota Members Rick Fox and Ken Knuppe for $800, who in turn donated it back for reauction where it sold to South Dakota Member Pat Trask for $900. Dakota Community Bank donated a limited edition 10th anniversary R-CALF USA sign, which was purchased by R-CALF USA Region IX Director George Chambers of Georgia for $1,400.

Anders Ranch, located in South Dakota, donated a Boxer Hitch, which was purchased by Utah Member Bert Smith for $275. A copy of the coffee-table book titled Great Ranches of the West, authored by Jim Keen and donated by Kansas Member Mike Callicrate, was purchased by South Dakota Member Chris Harvey for $185. Vendors from several states filled the exhibit room, and many local businesses also helped sponsor the event.

“We are very thankful to all the businesses and individuals who sponsored the R-CALF convention,” Masterson concluded.

“Rapid City gave us a great ‘welcome back,’ and we are excited to go back next year.” — WLJ