Tennessee's Jennifer Houston Brings a Woman's Perspective to the Table as NCBA's Vice PresidentMon, 06 Feb 2017 18:05:17 CST
Taking on an officer position for an industrywide organization such as the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, is by no means a small undertaking. By agreeing to accept the position, the nominee is committing to sacrificing an enormous amount of personal time and effort to serve their fellow cattlemen across the country, especially when it comes to being president of the association. Generally speaking, NCBA has more often then not, operated with a man at the helm of the organization. Historically though, there have been two determined women that have risen to hold this office. Accepting the office of NCBA Vice President last week at the NCBA and Cattle Industry Convention, Jennifer Houston, may well be on her way to being counted among the ranks of those women that have reached the top. She talked with Radio Oklahoma Ag Network Farm Director Ron Hays about this exciting moment in her career of involvement with the association.
“It’s just something I’ve been passionate about ever since college,” Houston remarked. “I grew up in a family of folks that believe you got to help yourself. We’ve always believed and talked about that we’ve got to do something and just believe in giving back to the industry, so that we have something for our children and our friends’ children and our neighbor’s children to come back to.”
Owning and operating both a cattle herd and a sale barn in Tennessee, along with her husband and their families, Houston has grown up in the business with a unique perspective. Although she advocates for all producers to join the ranks of a cattlemen’s association, be it on the county, state, national level or a combination, she still recognizes those that prefer to remain independent of affiliation as contributing members of the industry as a whole.
“They’re still part of our industry. As a Checkoff person, they pay their Checkoff so it does give me a unique viewpoint that when we’re talking about policies that affect our members, which is obviously number one with NCBA, they’re industrywide policies - we have to think about how they affect everybody else. Even the smallest producer.”
Her breadth of knowledge and background about the industry and the association truly reflects a certain level of commitment and understanding of what the organization is about and is sure to contribute to its ongoing function with a high degree of practicality. As vice president, coupled with these attributes, Houston will be able to bridge both sides of the association, and unite policy and Checkoff and assist in leading the organization’s business as a well-oiled machine.
“We’re really running on all cylinders, and really seeing the benefits of why NCBA is uniquely suited to do the job by having the two divisions,” she said. “We speak with one voice.”
Listen to the complete exchange between Hays and Houston about her new role within NCBA as vice president and her the goals she has set for this year, by clicking or tapping the LISTEN BAR below.
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