Selected to represent North Dakota
Ellingson and her husband, Chad, along with their children – Stetson; Jameson; Sierra; Medora; and Sheridan operate Ellingson Angus, on the ranch where Julie was raised. The family hosts an annual production sale in February and takes pride in helping its customers market their feeder calves and replacement females.
Ellingson has served as the executive vice president of the North Dakota Stockmen’s Association, an NCBA state affiliate, since 2009. Her responsibilities include work as the organization’s chief executive and financial officer, spokesperson and lobbyist. Before assuming that role, she was the NDSA’s communications director.
“YCC is an excellent opportunity to network with other young industry professionals while learning about the opportunities and challenges that beef producers across the country face daily,” Ellingson said.
Ellingson is a graduate of Bismarck State College and North Dakota State University, where she studied mass communications and general agriculture
The eight-day tour began at NCBA headquarters in Denver, Colo., where participants were given an organizational overview of NCBA and the Beef Checkoff Program. While in Denver, the group also heard from representatives of Cattle Fax and the U.S. Meat Export Federation. They toured a Safeway retail store and learned about Rancher’s Reserve brand beef marketing efforts. The group spent a day in Greeley, Colo., visiting JBS Five Rivers feed yards and processing facilities.
“It is important for young producers to understand and see each sector of the beef industry – from pasture to plate,” Ellingson said. “Traveling from a cow-calf ranch to a feedlot and processing plant really drives home the point that our industry is composed of many sectors which are all committed to produce a healthy end product.”
In Chicago, the group met with the senior management of the Chicago Mercantile Exchange at the Chicago Board of Trade. They had the chance to watch the activity on the trading floor and witness futures trading firsthand. Participants also visited Otto & Sons Industries, a family owned company providing quality products and custom solutions for the food industry since 1909. This tour offered a view of how boxed beef is turned into custom order portions for both major restaurant chains and some of the nation’s top steakhouses.
The group then traveled to Washington, D.C., where participants received an issues briefing from NCBA’s government affairs staff about policy issues currently facing the cattle industry. The group then traveled to Aldie, Va., for a tour and barbeque at Whitestone Farms, one of the nation’s elite purebred Angus operations.
The next day, these young cattlemen and women were given the opportunity to visit one-on-one with members of their state’s congressional delegation, expressing their viewpoints regarding the beef industry and their cattle operations. During their congressional visits, participants focused on issues including international trade, federal lands ranching and overreaching regulations proposed by the Environmental Protection Agency. They finished the day with a reception hosted by John Deere at the company’s Washington office.