Houston, Texas – Nearly 150 members of the American Brahman Breeders Association gathered on August 14 - 16, 2014, in Baton Rouge, La., for the Annual Membership Convention, which was held in conjunction with the ABBA Summer Board Meetings.

The event kicked off with the ABBA Membership Convention Welcome Reception “A Taste of Brahman” sponsored by Visit Baton Rouge. This unique event was a competition between five of Baton Rouge's elite chefs battling it out for the people's choice title of Top Chef. Chef Scott Varnadoe of Restaurant IPO received the top prize with his Brahman Top Sirloin dish.

Saturday kicked off with plenty of enjoyment and laughter with the Brahman Family Reunion; which was moderated by ABBA Past President Coleman Locke, and had the following honored participants: Clyde Goudeau, CCS Ranch; Carlos Guerra, La Muneca Cattle; Bob Parish, Parish Brahmans; J.D. Sartwelle, Jr., Sartwelle Brahman Ranch; Marcus Shackelford, Rocking S Ranch; Sloan Williams, V8 Ranch. This general session served as a storytelling and history lesson from some of the most knowledgeable and recognized breeders of Brahman cattle.

Additionally, all in attendance were able to participate in a panel discussion with James Henderson, Bradley 3 Ranch, Ltd., Childress, Texas; Chris Cooley, Golden Meadows Ranch, Cotulla, Texas; Paul Dufrene, Triple Son Farms, Cut Off, Louisiana; Jason Peeler, Texana Feeders & Sam Kane Beef Packers, Floresville, Texas. Which was all moderated by ABBA Vice President J.D. Sartwelle, Jr.. This session focused on meeting the customers demand with each segment of the industry being represented and informing attendees how to better meet these objectives.

After a ribeye steak lunch, sponsored by the Louisiana Cattlemen's Association, the membership split into two-separate break out sessions. One of which, was held at the Lamar Dixon Expo Center with Dr. Ron Gill, Professor and Extension Livestock Specialist with Texas Agrilife Extension, provided a live cattle-handling demonstration; as well as, demonstrated the proper techniques of collecting pen scores to measure docility. In addition, Coleman Locke, J.D. Hudgins, Inc., closed out the session with discussing promotion through photography.

Dr. Tim Page, Professor at Louisiana State University, Kevin Milliner, Cattle Genetics Specialist with Zoetis, and Dr. Matt Garcia, Assistant Professor at Louisiana State University all gave presentations on available tools to improve carcass quality; which was held on the Louisiana State University Campus. This session's attendees were also able to participate in a meat cutting demonstration with Manuel “Boo” Persica, Research Associate at Louisiana State University and Dr. Karl Harborth, Assistant Professor at Louisiana State University, followed by a taste panel.

The Membership Convention closed out on a strong note with Louisiana Lieutenant Governor Jay Dardenne serving as the guest speaker. ABBA is sincerely grateful for all of the special speakers, sponsors, and members who made this year's convention the largest to date and a huge success; and is looking forward to continuing the tradition.

For more information about Brahman cattle, the American Brahman Breeders Association, or any ABBA programs and events, visit

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