Meet the Future Monday: Christine McCollum of Williamson County, Tennessee

Processed with VSCO with c1 presetChristine McCollum of Williamson County, Tennessee is the focus of this week’s Meet the Future Monday. Christine is actively involved in her county’s livestock project group which has laid the ground work for her desire to grow her herd and helped her decide on her future career path. Read below to learn more.

1) Describe your operation.

We currently have eight heifers that are a mix of Angus, Simmental, Chi-Angus and Sim-Shorthorn, six of which are pregnant and due next spring. At the moment, we have one 3-month-old heifer out of one our own cows. I have one heifer that is out of a cow we bought last summer, and I am planning on showing her this summer. We also currently have three show steers at our barn along with three show hogs. We don’t own a bull but have had one brought to our farm to breed two of the heifers that are now pregnant and we artificially inseminated the other four. So, while our herd is fairly small at the moment, we are working to grow it.

2) What have you enjoyed most about growing up on the farm?

For me, the best part of growing up on a farm is all the lessons it has taught me. It has specifically taught me responsibility, whether that is in the barn taking care of livestock or serving as president of our county’s 4-H livestock project. It has also shown me that my passion is agriculture and helped me to start my path for college.mccollum1

3) Who has been your biggest role model in pursuing your farming aspirations?

Wow, it’s hard to pick one. Probably my dad and his dad, they co-own our little operation all while having full time jobs as a Pediatrician and a small animal Veterinarian. They’re not making any money from it, they do it so that my siblings and I can show animals and have the experience of growing up on a farm.

4) What are you most passionate about in your business?

Just agriculture in general; I have always loved livestock and I am planning on going to school to either become an Ag Teacher or large animal Veterinarian.

5) What are some of the greatest challenges that you face as a cattle producer?

Time; owning/living on a farm is a full-time job, and balancing my school work and the time I need to be spending at the barn with my animals is difficult.

6) Where do you see yourself and your operation in 10 years?

In ten years, I hope to either be working as a high-school Ag Teacher or a Veterinarian, two very different things. I hope to have a small operation consisting mostly of cattle and horses but possibly some sheep as well. mccollum3

7) How will you continue to improve and grow your operation?

Like I said we have six pregnant heifers that are due in a few months and we are praying some of them are bulls. We will probably sell them as steers and most likely use that money to expand our herd with more heifers.

8) How do you intend to leave your footprint on the cattle industry in Tennessee?

I hope to help educate more of the Middle Tennessee youth. I want to share the knowledge I have learned and expand the agriculture community in our area. I believe that the best way for me to do that is through 4-H. I currently serve as the Williamson County 4-H livestock project President and I am striving to involve more of our youth in the cattle project.

9) What could the existing farmers do most to help young cattle producers such as yourself?

I think the best thing for them to do is just to share their experience and knowledge with us. whether that’s by teaching at different workshops or just helping an individual kid. Also, supporting us at auctions is huge, our big county auction is held at the fair each year, and the more people we have there supporting each of us, the easier it is for us to continue to show our cattle.mccollum2

10) What is your favorite beef dish?

That’s a tough one, probably a ribeye steak though.



Youth Activities at 34th Annual Tennessee Cattlemen’s Association Convention


With the excitement of the New Year, also comes the annual Tennessee Cattlemen’s Convention & Trade Show at the end of January. There will be activities of interests for all ages, specifically the youth.

On Friday night, approximately 40 youth will be recognized for their honors and achievements at the first annual Alltech/Kubota Youth Awards Banquet. This banquet will include awarding the Farm Credit Mid America/ Tennessee Cattlemen’s Association Heifer scholarships, the new TCA Outstanding Youth Award, and the Tennessee’s Top Tier show points circuit awards. The excitement and anticipation for this event is high so stay tuned for more pictures during and after convention!

A new aspect to the youth activities at convention this year is the Youth for the Quality Care of Animals training sessions on Saturday. YQCA is a program that UT Extension will be promoting and implementing to youth who exhibit livestock in 2019. Youth whom are planning to participate in state expo will receive an incentive for having the YQCA certification or could potentially be required to have the certification.

SIGN UP TODAY, for YQCA training at TCA Convention! Details on how to register for your training session can be found on our website, here. The training will be offered for ages 8-18. The sessions will be held on Saturday morning— Junior (ages 8-11) and Intermediate (ages 12-14) will be held from 9:30-10:30 and Senior (ages 15-18) will be held from 10:45-11:45. We encourage youth members to take advantage of the opportunity to obtain their certification at convention.

Also at convention, we will hold a Tennessee Cattlemen’s Youth Association informational meeting for youth, parents, and others who are interested to learn more about TCYA and it’s programs. The 4-H Livestock Quiz Bowl Contest will be back at convention again this year. Those teams interested in participating should register through Aaron Fisher, Lastly, youth can network in the trade show as they complete the Convention Scavenger Hunt to compete for a cool prize.

Youth can attend convention for a discounted price of $10.00 which includes Saturday lunch. Registration forms for be found here.

There are a lot of exciting things happening at the Tennessee Cattlemen’s Association Convention & Trade Show this year! A full agenda and registration information can be found in recent issues of the Tennessee Cattle Business magazine or on our website at, Hope to see you at convention!


Agenda for Insta

Cowboy Poetry: The Stockman

By Barry Cooper | Bradley Farm | Sparta, TN 

cowboy at the rodeo - shot backlit against big cloud of dust, coWell, I got a little stockman’s blood,

Pumping through my veins,

I like a horse that can hold a cow,

I like the feel of bridle reins.


I’m really quite found of ropin’,

But I never made it to the NFR,

I’ll never be a singing cowboy,

Or a cowboy movie star.


I’ve never owned a pair of tennis shoes,

But I’ve got four pairs of boots,

I’ve got a good stout workin’ pen,

And a brand new cattle chute.


I keep my cattle healthy,

they never graze brush or weeds,

I got a charge account at the Farmers’ Co-op,

For supplies that I may need.


My gooseneck trailer is a little rusty,

My truck sure ain’t brand new,

But I’ve got a good bit of lush pasture grass,

Sparkling in the morning dew.


I’m usually bustin’ ice in January,

I’m fighting flies on the fourth of July,

I’m building fence in mid October,

Underneath a clear blue sky.


I’ll have to repair the big round baler,

I mush harvest and store some feed,

‘Cause in the dead of winter,

Good hay is what my cattle need.


I’ll gladly help my neighbor,

‘Round up some skittish strays,

I’ll have to bottle feed this baby calf,

Whose mother died today.


And while I’m outside in God’s creation,

I’ll stop and give Him praise,

For making me a stockman,

And for granting me another day.


Meet the Future Monday: Blaire Lamon of Henry County, Tennessee

Lamon1You would be hard-pressed to find someone as sweet and genuine with just as much fire and passion for the cattle industry as this week Meet the Future Monday. Blaire Lamon of Henry County, Tennessee not only loves this industry but also loves learning more about it and gathering the necessary tools to take her far into the future. Read our Q&A with Blaire to learn more.

  1. Describe your operation.

My grandfather, David Lamon, bought the farm we live on now in Cottage Grove. He started with 10 head of cattle. At that time, my grandfather, dad, and uncle started Triple D Farms. We are now called Lamon Farms & have increased our herd to 30 mama cows and a bull.

  1. What have you enjoyed most about growing up on the farm?

I enjoy driving the ranger around our property and helping my dad feed and move our cows to new pasture.

  1. Lamon2Who has been your biggest role model in pursuing your farming aspirations?

My biggest role models are my dad, mom, and the owners of Sunrise Farms- Ann & Angela Wilson for helping me with hands-on learning on the farm. The Wilsons have allowed me to show heifers from their farm at cattle shows & taught me about showmanship.

  1. What are you most passionate about in your business?

I enjoy learning new things about farming & cattle and want to further my education in the industry.

  1. Lamon3What are some of the greatest challenges that you face as a cattle producer?

Money to purchase quality cattle and land is a big challenge.

  1. Where do you see yourself and your operation in 10 years?

I see myself in college working towards a degree in Ag Science or Ag Business at Murray State University. I also hope to be helping other 4-H kids with showing cattle.

  1. How will you continue to improve and grow your operation?

I want to learn everything I can to improve the genetics of my cattle. I hope to one day be able to purchase more land around our farm to have more cattle.

  1. Lamon4What could the existing farmers do most to help young cattle producers such as yourself?

They could have programs & workshops at their farm to show us what they do for their cattle to help us be more successful on our farm.

  1. What is your favorite beef dish?

Steak, but I like hamburgers a lot too!


Op-Ed: TN Agriculture Commissioner Jai Templeton

4-18-16 Templeton_CommissionerJai_Tennessee Department of AgricuAs Governor Haslam’s administration comes to an end, I’m extremely pleased with the great work and devoted efforts that have come from our state government. During my time with the Tennessee Department of Agriculture, one focus I’m particularly proud of is our work to assist and promote Tennessee’s food, farm, and forest businesses.

Even if you have the best innovation or idea, the thought of having an international customer base can be daunting. By reorganizing our Agricultural Advancement Division, we’ve been able to expand our focus on assisting Tennessee businesses with a renewed emphasis on international trade and exports.

In September, five Tennessee food and beverage businesses made lasting connections and discussed future trade deals during an outbound trade mission to Canada. Soon after that, we were excited to help host the Southern Forest Products Export Conference in Memphis, which showcased the importance of southern forest products and the industry that produces them.

While we’re promoting trade abroad, we will always make sure we focus on strengthening local markets. Our Agriculture Enterprise Fund (AEF) program started one year ago with a primary focus to facilitate agricultural development in at-risk and distressed counties in Tennessee. We’ve already awarded more than $1.3 million through the AEF, and these investments will lead to a total economic impact of more than $25 million throughout the state. Furthermore, many farmers and producers have utilized our Tennessee Agriculture Enhancement Program (TAEP). The program has paid more than $168 million to assist 57,549 projects since it was established in 2005.

Supporting the marketplace and processing facilities that farmers and foresters use can be just as important as assisting with on-farm projects. We understand the need for additional USDA-inspected meat processing capacity, and I appreciate the work our team has recently done to assist in increasing the number of processors in the state to 16 while also further developing our active locations. We are continuing to work diligently with current facilities on expansion projects as well as assisting those interested in building new facilities to extend this progress for our livestock producers who need it.

Producers benefit from having multiple avenues to market and sell their products. With this in mind, I’m pleased that we have assisted more than 500 farmers market projects across the state by awarding more than $2.5 million through TAEP.

Tennessee farmers know how to make the most of what they’ve got, and many have always had to work with limited resources. I’m proud of the staff at the Tennessee Department of Agriculture for being an additional resource for those who need it. And I’m proud of the work that has been done to ensure that our agriculture and forestry industry remains strong and profitable for generations to come.

I appreciate Governor Haslam for giving me the opportunity to serve in this role. My time with farmers, foresters, and consumers from the greatest state in the country will always be a highlight of my life.

I hope you and your family have a Merry Christmas, a happy New Year, and a safe holiday season. Thank you for all of your support during my time as Tennessee’s Commissioner of Agriculture.

Meet the Future Monday: Jamie Fussell of Dickson County, Tennessee

Jamie Fussell of Dickson County, Tennessee has a simple and down to earth perspective of what it takes to be successful in the cattle industry. She enjoys life on the farm and isn’t afraid to work hard. Read our Q&A with this week’s Meet the Future Monday to learn more.IMG950679

Describe your operation.

I run a registered cow-calf operation and I show heifers that I have bred and raised.

What have you enjoyed most about growing up on the farm?

I enjoyed growing up in an environment where I have had the responsibility of taking care of living things.  I also enjoy being taught to have a big heart for all the little things.

Who has been your biggest role model in pursuing your farming aspirations?

My biggest role model is my mom because when we are both tired and frustrated she will still make me work hard for what I want.

What are you most passionate about in your business?

I love building the bonds with the cows and learning their big hearts and personalities.

What are some of the greatest challenges that you face as a cattle producer?

I have a hard time letting them go to the sale barn.IMG951730

Where do you see yourself and your operation in 10 years?

I see myself in a good college and continuing what I started by working hard.

How will you continue to improve and grow your operation?

I will continue to breed, but I will AI more to get my desirable show cows.

How do you intend to leave your footprint on the cattle industry in Tennessee?

I plan to get my name out by winning shows, selling good cows and being a genuine herdsman.

What could the existing farmers do most to help young cattle producers such as yourself?

Share what they know and if possible, share resources.  Don’t make it competitive.

What is your favorite beef dish?FB_IMG_15

Bacon wrapped beef tenderloin filet cooked medium rare.


Meet the Future Monday: Eli Mundy of Claiborne County, Tennessee

Mundy Insta MFMAs a fifth-generation cattleman, Eli Mundy of Claiborne County, Tennessee, knows that it takes hard work to cultivate success. Thankfully for Eli, that hard work involves a multitude of things he enjoys on the farm. Read our Meet the Future Monday Q&A with Eli to learn more about his operation and his plans for success in the future.

  1. Describe your operation.

I am a 5th generation cattle farmer here at Mundy Farms in Speedwell Tennessee, where we have 75 head of beef cattle. I have been showing cattle for five years, and I am currently working on building my own registered Simmental/Angus herd.

  1. What have you enjoyed most about growing up on the farm?

I mostly enjoy waking up every day knowing that my daily routine involves doing things that mean the most to me. I enjoy going to different cattle shows and meeting new people.

  1. Who has been your biggest role model in pursuing your farming aspirations?

In my 15 years of growing up on the farm, I have had many friends and family who have inspired me in many ways. However, my biggest role model would have to be my Papaw. He has taught me most things I know about life on the farm, and he has encouraged me to be the person I am today.Mundy2

  1. What are you most passionate about in your business?

I am most passionate about learning things on the farm that will be useful in my future.

  1. What are some of the greatest challenges that you face as a young cattle producer?

One of the greatest challenges that I face as a young farmer is making time to get everything done. I am involved in several other activities including showing pigs, sheep, and cattle. I am also active in church activities, 4-H, and FFA. However, I still find enough time to get my chores done on the farm.

  1. Where do you see yourself and your operation in 10 years?

In 10 years, I’ll be 25 and hopefully have a college degree. It is my intention to focus on a degree in the cattle industry that would benefit me, my family, my community, and my great state. By then, I hope to have more cattle, improved genetics and equipment, and more acreage to allow me and my family a successful future.

  1. How will you continue to improve and grow your operation?

As I continue my education, I hope to learn about all the many things associated with the cattle industry that I can bring back home to improve my operation.Mundy4

  1. How do you intend to leave your footprint on the cattle industry in Tennessee?

I hope to be involved with things to help my family and neighboring producers, so they will be proud of me and my accomplishments.

  1. What could the existing farmers do most to help young cattle producers such as yourself?

Existing farmers have learned through hours of hard work. I hope through their hands-on experience they can pass down helpful ideas to me as well as other future farmers.

  1. What is your favorite beef dish?

9oz. sirloin medium rare, loaded baked potato no chives, salad with ranch, and Sprite to drink.Mundy1


Reminder: Upcoming Dec. 15 Deadline for Several TCA Awards

Saturday, December 15th is a big day for those wishing to apply or be nominated for several annual awards from the Tennessee Cattlemen’s Association, including both adult and youth awards. For a list of the applications due on the 15th, see below.

TCA (adult) Award Nomination Forms– Know someone that has excelled in the field of cattle production, education or youth development? We hope you will consider nominating them for one of our Tennessee Cattlemen’s Association’s annual awards. We recognize FFA, 4-H and adult agriculture work as well as a Distinguished Service award. Awards are presented during the luncheon at TCA Convention on Friday, January 25th. Click here for the nomination forms.

  • Outstanding Work in FFA Beef Program
  • Outstanding Work in 4-H Beef Program
  • Jim Neel Outstanding Work in Beef Cattle Adult Area
  • John Bartee Distinguished Service Award
  • Emmitt Rawls Outstanding Stocker Producer
  • Clyde Lane Outstanding Cow-calf Producer
  • Business Person of the Year
  • TCA Outstanding Youth Award

TCA (youth) Award Applications—There are several new opportunities for TCA youth members to take advantage of. See below for award nomination forms, scholarship applications, and applications for leadership within the TCYA.

  • Farm Credit Mid America/TCA Youth Beef Heifer Initiative Scholarship
  • TCA Outstanding Youth Award
  • Tennessee Cattlemen’s Youth Association Ambassador

Please feel free to reach out to our office with any questions or concerns that you may have. Don’t forget to submit your paperwork by December 15th!

Meet the Future Monday: Ben Hansen of Robertson County, Tennessee

Hansen Insta MFMAs a new-comer to farming, Ben Hansen as learned everything about this way of life from scratch and gained a simple, yet sound appreciation for farming and raising cattle. Read our Q&A with Ben Hansen on Robertson County, Tennessee to learn more about this week’s Meet the Future Monday and the plans that he has for the future of his operation.

Describe your operation.

We only have 26 acres so when we decided to breed cows my parents thought it was best to go with quality rather than quantity. We purchased 8 recip cows then bought embryos that’s how we started our herd.

What have you enjoyed most about being on a farm?

I love the space and being able to ride around on my four-wheeler motorbike.

Who has been your biggest role model in pursing your farming aspirations?

My parents; we were new to farming a few years back and they taught me that hard work pays off and to have an open mind when learning new things.

What are you most passionate about in your business?Hansen 1

I think it’s very important to work with your cattle while they are young. It is so much easier to do what you have to do with them if they are used to being around you. We can easily get our cows up by calling them with a bucket of feed.

What are some of your greatest challenges that you face as a young farmer?

It can be very difficult to stay involved in the farm during football season or when things at school get busy. Also, kids that are not involved in farming often don’t understand what you must do and they think it’s stupid.

Where do you see yourself and your operation in 10 years?

I really want to go to college and study engineering. I want to stay involved in the farm and hopefully during my studies I can find ways to help improve our breeding program. One day when I have a family I hope that my kids get to experience working with cattle and how it teaches you responsibility and hard work

How will you continue to improve and grow your operation?Hansen3

They are a lot of clinics out there to help young farmers and I think it’s important to go to them. Things are always changing and technology is becoming a big part of farming I think my generation can use this as an advantage to change how things are done.

How do you intend to leave your footprint on the beef industry in Tennessee?

I would like our farm to have a reputation for providing quality breeding cattle. By learning how to read EPDs and understanding how to combine genetics we can breed quality cattle in Tennessee.

What could the existing farmers do most to help future farmers such as yourself?Hansen4

I think today’s farmers are doing a great job helping kids like me become involved in farming, by teaching us work ethics and setting examples for how to run a successful business.  The incentives out there for scholarships are great as well. I think work experience on farms would be a great way to help us learn more on how different farms operate.

What is your favourite beef dish?

I love steak!!


Tennessee Cattlemen’s Association To Continue Show Point Program in 2019

(MURFREESBORO—NOVEMBER 20, 2018) The Tennessee Cattlemen’s Association (TCA) will continue the widely successful show point incentive program, Tennessee’s Top Tier, that they started at the beginning of this year, again in 2019. The program will run similar to 2018 with only a few minor changes.TCA Show Cattle Pt2

The show point program is in place to encourage youth involvement at cattle shows and other agricultural events, and create additional recognition and rewards exclusively for members of the Tennessee Cattlemen’s Youth Association (TCYA) whom participate.

The 2019 circuit will begin with the Rocky Top Classic show in Knoxville, Tennessee on December 1 and run through the Tennessee State Fair. The circuit will consist of nine shows. Year-end awards for the 2019 circuit will be awarded at the 2020 TCA Convention and Trade Show.

Youth that are eligible to participate must be under 21 years of age and a TCA youth member. Memberships are $10 annually.

Those interested in participating or learning more are encouraged to visit the website,, for more information such as point vales, awards, and rules/guidelines. Please direct any questions to

TCYA logo