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ANGUS TIMELY TOPICS

by: Bryce Schumann
Chief Executive Officer, American Angus Association

Giving back to the Angus breed

By the time you read this column, the delegates to the 125th Annual American Angus Association Convention of Delegates will have elected five directors to the American Angus Association Board of Directors. This election is not unusual, as this is the pattern established in our bylaws to elect the Association's leadership. But elections such as this are of great significance to our organization.

Dedication of volunteers

When you look at the complexities of the Association's business and the commitment of time each Board Member makes for the opportunity to serve the members of our great breed, you have to appreciate their willingness to take time away from their own operations to help make the Angus breed and the Association better for everyone.

These volunteers are critical to the success of our organization. Our boards are routinely called upon to put the needs of the breed before their own. They attend countless events on regional, state and national levels, representing the American Angus Association while interacting with members and providing important communication.

It is admirable that so many make such a commitment to provide the time and the energies the job requires. Being a Director is not an easy job. The issues the Board must consider in setting the agenda for the Angus breed are complex. With any complex decision, there are a host of options as to which path the breed should follow. The path to take is many times not a unanimous choice in the beginning, but through that variety of options voiced and the discussion that surrounds them, our Board has proven itself very adept in decision-making.

Important decisions made in the course of a Director's tenure are not always popular, but they are necessary for our organization and the breed to keep moving forward. Hard decisions are part of the job description and are accepted responsibilities.

A balancing act

It is important to recognize this volunteer service is a balancing act. I think it is easy to forget the balance a Director must strike. You commit your time and your knowledge for no pay while at the same time trying to keep your business running and saving time for your family, which many times contributes additional time and effort at home in order for you to succeed as a Director of the American Angus Association.

This commitment is recognized and respected, and I want to thank our Directors and their families, past and present, for all that they have done and continue to do.

I also want to thank those who declare annually that they want the opportunity to be considered by our delegates for the opportunity to direct. This volunteer spirit, this dedication and desire by this select group to improve the breed provides your Association the renewable resource required to move forward.

The responsibilities of our directors and officers are many, and they serve for free, but the rewards can be many when we all recognize the difference they make to the Angus breed.

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