Preparing for Junior Nationals

Hey everyone, it’s the interns again! Less than a week until we see everyone at Junior Nationals, and we could not be more excited here in the office. This week, in honor of Junior Nationals coming up, we thought we would tell you a little bit about our favorite livestock show activities, and maybe help you to remember some items that we have a habit of forgetting when packing!


            Hey everyone! I hope you are all excited for next week, we have been working hard in the office to get everything prepared! When it comes to shows, one of my absolute favorite pastimes is spending time with friends that I don’t get to see very often. Showing livestock opens doors to friends across the country that you may not have known otherwise, and I am always excited to spend time with my show family (oh, and also eating some very good food). I like to think that I am a strategic packer, however, there is always one thing that I manage to forget and that is my belt! Something else that I have learned over the years is that you can never pack too many socks, I always manage to soak my feet when I wash my livestock. The countdown to Junior Nationals is almost over and I cannot wait to see everyone there!


Hey there! Only a few more days in the office, until we head out to Louisville for the event we all have been waiting for! My favorite part of being at a show is honestly just spending forced family fun with my parents and siblings. It is what we all work for and even though we may bicker like cats and dogs at times, we tend to get along (for the most part), while at a show. It is where we come together and work as a team and not against one another. A show day setting gets very stressful for everyone; each one of us has a mindset of what needs to be done, when it needs to be done, before arriving that day. We all get things done when they are needing to be done (sometimes with a friendly reminder ;-)). Another thing that excites me is being around other livestock enthusiasts. I have been gifted many friendships through showing livestock and I would not trade any of them for the world. 

            With packing for junior nationals, don’t forget your soap for those sudsy, early wash rack mornings. That seems to always be the one thing that I forget in terms of equipment. Otherwise, I always seem to forget my belt or boots for show day (only the necessities apparently). With everything else going on and being a little stressed for packing, think about this blog, and don’t forget these little things that might slip your mind! 

            Safe travels to all of you attending the NJSS, and I am so very excited to see everyone’s smiling faces come Monday at check-in!


            Hi guys! As junior national is quickly approaching, I should probably start to think about what I’m going to pack. I always remember the crucial things (pants, shirts, etc.); but there are a few things I can never seem to remember: boot socks, my belt, and hairspray! Hopefully reading this week’s blog will help you remember the little things while packing 😉.  My favorite part of shows is definitely the time I get to spend with some of my best friends. I have created a large network of friends in the livestock industry, and they have become some of my favorite people. Any chance to see them and create memories is time well spent! I hope everyone is excited to get to junior nationals and create those memories in less than a week!! Catch ya’ll in Louisville 😊

L-R: Bella, Amelia, Michelle

How did we get here?

Hello! It’s the interns again! Today we thought that we would give you a little background on ourselves, what lead us to be where we are today, and why we want to be involved in the agricultural industry today and in our futures. We hope you enjoy learning a little more about our backgrounds today!


I grew up in a farming community in a rural Illinois town, in a family that raises cattle and farms corn and soybean crop. I have a passion for the agriculture industry that is never going to burn out, and it is because of the people around me who used their passion to ignite mine. This is an industry that is a huge, nationwide family, and advocating for the industry is important now more than it has been. I want to be an advocate for this industry and help young people like myself to find their passion and grow future generations of agricultural advocates.

Agriculture has played a huge role in my life. I owe everything I have accomplished to the agriculture industry because, without it, I do not think that I would be where I am today. I wasn’t born into agriculture, but when my mom re-married, I was thrown into it headfirst. As soon as I was old enough to participate in 4-H, my stepdad, Donnie Brandenburg bought my first set of pigs to show at the county fair, and from then on, I was hooked. I got to grow up showing cattle, swine, and goats at local, state, and national levels.

From day one, he has been my number one supporter and has given me everything I needed to succeed and more. He did not have to do the things he did for me, but he chose to anyway and I will forever be grateful to him for staring me on the path I am on. I truly owe where I am today to him. He taught me responsibility, leadership, and respect by giving me the opportunity to do what I spent 14 years loving. If I had to give any advice to a young showman in the industry it would be don’t blink, because the summers of showing truly do go by faster than you think.


I grew up raising and showing sheep on my family’s acreage. My dad grew up raising and showing just about every species possible and wanted his kids to be able to have that experience as well. Raising sheep is what began my interest in the livestock industry, as well as the agriculture industry as a whole. I give so much credit to my parents for giving me the opportunity to be involved in this industry at a young age and for always helping me throughout the last 21 years.

 I was exposed to agriculture on both sides of my family and was always eager to learn more about the different segments. My paternal grandparents raise donkeys and feed out cattle, while my mom’s sister and her family raise Angus cattle. Being from Nebraska, the cattle industry is something that I continue to learn about and peak interest in.

After joining FFA my freshman year of high school, I was intrigued by the disconnect between consumers and producers. As I went through my four years of high school, I knew that I wanted to be involved in helping educate people about agriculture and bridge that gap. FFA is truly when I found my passion in the agriculture industry and the reason I went into agricultural communications. My FFA advisor, Kris Spath, helped push me to better myself professionally, personally, and as an agriculturist. I learned a lot from her throughout my time in FFA, and still am today.

Agriculture has been in my life since I was young, and it will be my future as well. I am so thankful to have grown up in this industry and can’t wait to see how it grows and adapts in the upcoming years. 


How did I get involved in agriculture? Both of my parents grew up showing livestock, but I feel my passion came from their parents’ love for it. My dad’s parents raised commercial sheep and goats, while my mom’s parents raised registered Limousin cattle. It was not until I was in kindergarten when I started showing lambs at the county fair, and third grade when I showed my first string of cattle. I owe Val Wasinger, a Shorthorn and Simmental breeder of Winnebago, Minn. the credit for my passion for the livestock industry. I grew up showing cattle for her, as she grew up showing cattle for my grandfather. She has mentored me since I was 11 years old, and I still go to her for everything and anything. Additionally, I owe my passion for the agriculture industry to the National FFA Organization. I have gained many friendships and networking opportunities through that great organization. Between going to different camps to state and national convention, I have gained different qualities I never thought I could.

As I have grown into the person I am today, I have been able to know right from wrong through my parents raising me, however as I have moved far away from home first for college, and now for my internship, I have taken all that they have taught me about livestock, life, and perspective with me. I have been able to continue to grow even when they are not watching my every move. You may not choose your family, but I would pick them a million times over. Every part of your life happens for a reason, good or bad. You need to learn from your success and failure to grow.

This may be a lot, but that is how I have grown a passion for agriculture, and I would not change it for anything. In today’s world, each agriculturist needs to be an advocate. With the bridge between rural and urban becoming larger, we need to continue to show the rest of the world what agriculture and livestock industries are truly like and not what the outsiders view them as. One day there will be no outsiders and we will all be educated.

Get to Know the Interns

L-R: Michelle, Amelia, Bella.

Hey guys, it’s Amelia, Bella and Michelle, your 2021 ASA interns. It is week three in the office, and we are getting closer to the National Junior Shorthorn Show! This week, we thought it would be fun to do a little “get to know the interns” with some fun questions.

What is your favorite movie snack?

A: Peanut M&M’s and popcorn

B & M: Regular M&M’s and popcorn

What is your favorite safari animal?

A: Quokka

B: Giraffe

M: Monkeys

Any hobbies?

A: Tennis

B: Golf

M: Painting and Crocheting

Three bucket list items:

A: To live in Australia for a year, to travel across Europe, and to show in Canada.

B: To go on a mission trip, to visit every state, and to own my own business of some kind.

M: Travel to Amsterdam and across Germany visiting historical sights, travel across the United States, and have a career in the livestock industry.

What is your favorite Podcast?

A: Beyond the Ring

B: The Keeper Pen

M: Crime Junkies

What is your favorite color?

A: white

B: light pink

M: purple

If you were a food, would you be sweet or spicy?

A: sweet

B: spicy

M: sweet

What is the best concert you’ve ever been to?

A: George Strait in Kansas City

B: Garth Brooks in Louisville

M: Parker McCollum at Calf Fry in Stillwater

What show are you currently binge-watching?

A, B, & M: Reba

Do you have any phobias?

A: chickens

B: Dachshunds

M: snakes

We are staying busy finalizing all the plans for NJSS. There is a record number of entries and exhibitors this year which is exciting for the Shorthorn breed. We are looking forward to meeting everyone in just a couple of short weeks!

Interns First Week

L-R: Bella, Amelia, Michelle

Hey everyone! We are Amelia, Bella and Michelle and we are serving as your interns for the summer of 2021. We have been working hard in the office to get everything prepped for junior nationals, and we hope you are as pumped as we are! Amelia is serving as the youth activities intern, Michelle is serving as the communications intern, and Bella is serving as the registrations intern for the summer 2021. We are pumped for the summer ahead and cannot wait to see everyone!


  • Hey y’all! Week one in the office was busy, but very exciting as we get ready to see everyone. As we start our second week in the office, we have been working on getting everything ready for the contests and activities the junior board have planned. Us three interns have grown close in the past week and are excited to see what the rest of the summer entails. I cannot express how excited I am to see what this summer brings. I can’t wait to see everyone’s excited faces in Louisville in less than three short weeks!


  • Hey everyone! Week one in the office was full of tasks but was so much fun. As we start our second week in the office, we have been working on getting all registrations corrected and put into shows. We have gotten to know each other very quickly throughout this past week and I’m more than excited to see how the rest of this summer goes. I can’t wait to continue to build relationships throughout the office and this industry.


  • Hey guys! I hope everyone is excited to head to Louisville soon! Week one has kept all of us very busy working on preparations for junior nationals. In week one, and throughout the next week my focus has been on the exhibitor folders. I have also spent the last week getting to know my fellow interns and we are all excited for what the summer ahead holds for us, and we cannot wait to see everyone in Louisville soon!

2021 Meet the Interns

Michelle Noggle is from Casey, Ill., where she grew up showing both cattle and pigs. She is a senior at Oklahoma State University (OSU) where she is pursuing a bachelor’s degree in Animal Science and a bachelor’s degree in Agricultural Communications.  Throughout her time at OSU, Michelle has been an active member of Oklahoma Collegiate Cattlewomen’s and the Swine Club. In her spare time, she enjoys reading and painting. Michelle looks forward to serving as the ASA communications intern this summer. Her classes at OSU have prepared her to assist in social media planning, website updates, and design projects. She is excited to learn more about the cattle industry and agricultural communications.

Bella Chaffin is currently a Junior at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, studying agricultural and environmental science communications. In her three years at the university she has been involved in several organizations such as Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow and her sorority, Kappa Delta. She developed a passion for agriculture at a young age on her family’s acreage in Waverly, Nebraska. She grew up raising and showing sheep and was heavily involved in 4-H and FFA. Post-graduation she hopes to use her passion to advocate for agriculture through outreach and education. Bella is excited to start her internship as the registrations intern with the ASA. She looks forward to work with the junior members this summer and learning more about the Shorthorn breed and association. 

Amelia Schatz is a second-year student at Kansas State University, studying Agricultural Communications & Journalism. She is originally from Le Center, Minnesota, where she grew up on a small Limousin operation showing Limousin and Shorthorn cattle. Amelia is currently part of K-State’s Meat Judging team and is very active within our Block & Bridle club. As an active member in the club, she hs developed skills in communications, relationship development and team management that will be a benefit to her in this position. Amelia is very excited to be working within such a great association, surrounded by such talented individuals. She looks forward to serving as the youth activities intern working closely on the contests for the National Junior Shorthorn Show and Youth Conference. 

American Shorthorn Association Announces 2022 Cattlemen’s Congress as Super National Shorthorn Show

KANSAS CITY, Missouri (April 8, 2021) – The American Shorthorn Association Board of Directors met to discuss the Shorthorn breed participation at the 2022 Cattlemen’s Congress and 2022 National Western Livestock Show.

The Board of Directors unanimously approved the 2021-2022 ASA Point Show System recognizing the 2022 Cattlemen’s Congress as a super national and the 2022 National Western Livestock Show as a regional show. The National Shorthorn Summit Sale will be held at Cattlemen’s Congress.

The approved show system will recognize five regions, each having two regional shows, one super regional show and one national show. Regional Awards for the five regions will use the four shows in each region for point calculations. The American Shorthorn Association will recognize one national show within each region and two super national shows for a total of seven shows used for National Award calculations.

“We are excited to announce Cattlemen’s Congress as a super national show for our membership,” said Montie Soules, Executive Secretary/CEO of ASA. “Our new show system expands the available point shows to allow more breeders to exhibit across the country. We look forward to seeing our show participation grow for the 2021-2022 show season.”

The complete ASA Point Show System will be announced to our membership in the May/June issue of Shorthorn Country and will be available at The announcement will include participating shows for the 2021-2022 show season and point distribution for each show level.

About ASA

The American Shorthorn Association’s mission is to serve all members and enhance the value of the Shorthorn breed by managing data, maintaining the integrity of the herdbook, educating members and communicating the value of Shorthorn cattle resulting in the expanded use of Shorthorn genetics in the U.S. beef industry. Visit to learn more.

American Shorthorn Association : 7607 NW Prairie View Road, Kansas City, MO 64151: Phone 816.599.7777


2019 ASA National Sire Test Performance Review

The National Sire Test (NST) program has been a valuable tool for testing the ability of Shorthorn genetics to perform in a real-world setting. The third and final year of the NST and our partnership with the University of Illinois provided us with more data on a genetically diverse bunch of Shorthorn sires. Once again, we were able to collect a full set of data on Shorthorn-influenced cattle from birth to rail. The NST provides breeders the opportunity to test the genetics in their breeding program in a real-world setting while gaining more progeny data on their sires. From a big picture standpoint, the NST gives ASA more information on the breed to show to the industry that our cattle have the capability to be used as a profitable piece of their breeding program.

As was the theme with just about every walk of life in 2020, the National Sire Test experienced some unexpected hiccups and changes to plans. With the Tyson plant in Joslin, IL having capacity cut due to Covid-19 restrictions, the cattle had to stay on feed longer than anticipated before they were able to be harvested. Like previous installments of this program, the ten enrolled sires were bred to 200 U of I cows at their Dixon Spring research farm in December 2018 for these fall-born 2019 calves. After weaning, the calves were moved to the beef farm on campus for the feeding trial and finishing phase. The cattle were on feed for a slightly longer time period than in the past. You will see this longer feeding period reflected in weights on these animals. Below are data compilations of all the sires from the 2019 calf crop. Data is broken down into steers and heifers by sire.

I want to thank all the breeders that participated in this program over the past three years. It has been very rewarding to see Shorthorn-sired cattle perform to industry standards and validate that this breed deserves a chance to play a role in the commercial cattle industry in the United States. Without the help and cooperation of Dr. Dan Shike at the University of Illinois, we wouldn’t have been able to make this project happen. Special thanks to him and his team for all their work, data collection, and being a gracious host and partner over the years of the NST.

New Staff at ASA

March brings spring and a time for new beginnings, including some changes at the American Shorthorn Association!

Emily Velisek, the ASA Director of Events, Show and Membership activities left her job at the ASA at the end of February. Emily joined the ASA staff in July of 2017 and we watched her grow in her position during her time here. We enjoyed working with her and wish her all the best for her future in Iowa! She will be missed but we know we will see her down the road.

Matt Woolfolk, the ASA Director of Performance Programs, Performance Data and Commercial Acceptance recently got engaged and will be leaving us in April. He will still continue to work in his current position. We look forward to our continued work with Matt, even if it isn’t full-time. We are so excited for him and his future with his soon-to-be bride. Congratulations Matt!

Cassie Reid has joined us as Customer Service Specialist and Co-Director of Shows, Event and Membership Services. In this position she will provide customer support and assist with press releases and eblasts. She will also coordinate shows, events and communicate with membership.  

Reid comes to the American Shorthorn Association from the Ozark Empire Fairgrounds & Event Center(OEF) in Springfield, Mo. where she served most recently as the Livestock Director. During her 6-year tenure at OEF, she was active with the International Association of Fairs and Expositions (IAFE), graduating from the Institute of Fair Management in December of 2018. Most recently, Reid served on the IAFE’s Young Professionals Initiative Steering Committee. Reid began her career in 2014 as the Assistant Ag Director at OEF. She is a 2015 alumna of Missouri State University in Springfield, Mo. with a Bachelor’s degree in Agricultural Communications. Reid originally hails from Bosworth, Mo. on her family’s diversified row crop and cattle farm. As a 4-H & FFA member, Reid primarily exhibited Shorthorn & Charolais cattle & Boer Goats throughout her youth.

“I look forward to engaging with the members of the American Shorthorn Association and seeing success throughout all aspects of the breed,” Reid said. “My experience in the fair industry provides the confidence needed to see association goals flourish, from start to finish.”

Wade Minihan has joined us as Customer Service Specialist and Co-Director of Shows, Event and Membership Services. In this position he will provide customer support, assist with DNA and weights and measurements management for performance data. He will also coordinate shows, events and communicate with membership.  

 Minihan grew up in Blaine, Kansas on a Commercial Cow/Calf and Registered Hereford cattle operation. While growing up, his family showed cattle at the state and national level. He was an active member of the American Junior Hereford association, as well as, the Kansas Junior Hereford association where he served on the junior board. Minihan graduated from Fort Hays State University, with a bachelor’s degree in agribusiness, with a minor in marketing. While at FHSU, he was involved in many clubs/organizations on campus. Minihan was an intern in 2019 at the American Shorthorn Association.

“I think my internship gave me good knowledge and helped prepare me for this position,” Minihan said. “My internship gave me knowledge of the Shorthorn breed and many connections with people involved in the association. I am excited for this new opportunity and look forward to working with the breeders.”

The ASA is excited to welcome two new members to our team. We may go through a small transition period at ASA during training of our new staff members, but we still will be available to assist our membership! After the two new staff members are trained, you can call in and receive assistance from anyone in the office. All staff will be trained to assist you in the registry.

Virtual Annual Meeting in February

The ASA Annual Meeting will be held virtually on February 6th at 10 a.m. central time zone.

Delegates, you have received an email with information about the annual meeting. You will receive more emails as we have more information! 
ASA members, we will send out an eblast as we get closer to the date of annual meeting with information on how to join the Zoom meeting!