Cross Diamond Cattle Co. Breeder of the Year
Cross Diamond Cattle Co. of Bertrand, NE, received the Breeder of the Year Award from the Red Angus Association of America (RAAA) at the Red Angus National Convention in Reno, NV, Nov. 1-2. Barry Horsley of Stringtown, OK, presented the award to Scott and Kim Ford and their daughters Johanna and Marie.
Cross Diamond Cattle Co. is a Red Angus seedstock operation located in south-central Nebraska. The Fords focus their program on the maternal strengths of their cowherd. “We believe that these cows have to work for us, not the other way around,” said Scott.
They base their breeding program on sound, efficient, fertile cattle. The Fords believe fertility is their first priority because a live calf is the first criteria to being successful as a rancher. Their summer-calving runs from mid-April through June to capitalize on the early grass in the pastures while avoiding the heat of late summer.
They are strict in their culling practices, never holding over an open cow for any reason. They also cull for inadequate leg and foot structure, and score each cow’s udder at calving time.
Cross Diamond Cattle Co. markets their age-advantaged bulls the second week in December so the bulls are 2-year-olds at turn-out time. “It’s important to us that our bulls work for our customers,” said Kim.
“Like many of the predecessors who have received this award,” said Horsley, “these folks have dedicated a lot of sweat, tears, hard work and vision, and this all began decades ago when Kim’s grandfather brought the first Red Angus bulls to the Sandhills of Nebraska to put on his Hereford cows.”
He was so satisfied with the calves that in the early ’70s he purchased the first registered Red Angus cows. Kim’s parents continued raising Red Angus into the ’90s and, as Kim grew up, built her own herd of registered Red Angus. When she and Scott married, they purchased 100 cows from her parents and thus began Cross Diamond Cattle Co.
In addition to the ranch, Kim serves as second vice president on the RAAA Board of Directors and as chairman of Promotions Committee. She was recently recognized as one of the Ten Most Influential People in the Beef Industry Under the Age of 40.
Scott is a representative for Pioneer Seed and serves approximately 60 customers.
“This Red Angus breed is awesome,” said Scott, “but the cattle are only a conduit on which we make our relationships and friendships with these people that mean so much to us. — WLJ