Starting from scratch is never easy but Calli Williams of TW Angus shares how their family has made incredible strides forward in the agriculture industry!
‘From The Ground Up’
I recently had the opportunity to be a guest of AgWeek’s podcast, AgPod, to discuss life as First- Generation Ranchers. I wanted to use this week’s Ag Experience article to dive into the topic and share more about what it means to be First Generation Ranchers.
As first-generation ranchers, we have a unique story as we started TW Angus from the ground up. The credit for starting TW Angus goes to my husband Tate, as he began building his herd while in high school. The best part of this story is Tate started his herd while living on Lake Mitchell.
Yes, a boy who technically lived in town with no land to his name or agricultural background was starting his own Angus herd.
Tate’s good friends who raised Angus cattle saw his passion for the breed. They gave him the opportunity of a lifetime to begin buying cattle. Tate knew other families within the cattle business who showed him the ropes of calving, branding, weaning and he spent time working in the Winner, SD, sale barn. He is a natural around cattle.
I was fortunate to grow up around cattle as my parents have a cow-calf operation. I was hands-on with every aspect from daily chores, AI season, and being able to show the cattle we raised in both 4-H and FFA.
I always hoped I would be able to incorporate cattle as both part of my career and lifestyle as an adult.
The weekend Tate and I were engaged, we signed the papers on an FSA loan that allowed us to purchase the acreage we call home. Planning a wedding, remodeling a house, and converting our acreage from a swine farrowing operation to a cattle ranch was quite the test!
‘That’s The Thing About Ranchers’
We quickly learned that in addition to our full-time careers, we needed to focus on diversity to keep the ranch afloat.
Since purchasing our acreage, Tate has become a Genex Beef Representative. We also transitioned from selling our bulls via private treaty to hosting an online bull sale each spring and we consign cattle to the Black Hills Stock Show.
Starting from scratch in any business venture can be difficult. It has its hard days, there is no denying that. Tate and I have an incredible support system, and we are raising our two boys in the best industry out there.
We always have goals in mind whether they are goals for tomorrow, for next year, five years or ten years down the road.
That’s the thing about ranchers. “We are optimistic bunch, or we wouldn’t be here.” Whether you are a first-generation rancher, or a fifth-generation rancher.