ABBA Board of Directors Meeting, February 13

Editor’s Note: Due to the recent American Brahman Breeders Association (ABBA) Board of Director’s meeting happening so close to TBJ’s March press date, this report was written by our staff. Reference the ABBA’s website at for the official meeting summaries.

The ABBA Committees and Board of Directors met Saturday, February 13, 2016 in San Antonio, Texas.

During the reading and approval of the minutes from the meeting held November 20, 2015 it was noted that a correction was needed. The minutes stated, “The ABBA Show committee will re-enforce the rule to check… seasonal fertility results stating that a bull can settle cows from a certified technician on the Senior Division bulls at the National and International Shows.” This motion was changed and carried to include only the oldest Senior class of bulls, not all Senior bulls.

ABBA Secretary/Treasurer, Loren Pratt, presented the ABBA Financial Statement ending in the year 2015 and reported that income is up and expenses are down, equating to a profit of $42,013.11. An update on the investments with Chilton Capital was given and as of February 4, the market value was $604,164.13, which is a .70% increase since its inception.

Carlos Guerra was asked to speak about The Brahman Foundation. He gave an overview of the Foundation’s goals and direction for the future. Guerra said more than 300 people donated or supported the foundation’s first big fundraising event, and he thanked all the donors and sponsors who were in attendance.

The Communications report was presented by Joe Ward, the Vice Chairman of the Communications Committee. The ABBA will have a shopping cart on the ABBA website to better market ABBA promotional products. The committee discussed the shopping kiosk that will be set up at The Brahman Journal booth during the 2016 International Brahman Show. This kiosk will allow shoppers to order items from the ABBA electronically and then be able to pick them up the next day at the ABBA booth during the show. A new ABBA jacket and vest with a new logo design was discussed. The new logo was decided upon for ABBA promotional items after a small adaption is made by Ag Town, the ABBA’s communication and design firm. The opportunity for breeders to purchase banner ads on the ABBA website is now available. Banner ads on the home page are offered at $300 per month or $2,400 per year, and there are three banners available for sale, as one banner will be used for ABBA promotion. Side banners on secondary pages are available at $150.00 per month or $1,200 per year. There are eight side banners available for sale. The committee discussed Ag Towns proposed photo shoots in the spring for new photos to be used in advertisements. A new ad was discussed about the Colombian borders being open. Additionally, Ag Town will prepare a video and article about the recent Performance Bull Test.

The ABBA Show Committee report was given by Chairman Gerald Young. The previous meetings minutes were corrected with regards to the wording change about the fertility testing of bulls being limited to the oldest Senior class of bulls. The upcoming Judges Seminar was announced and will be held August 11-13 in Brenham, Texas. The committee felt this year only one seminar was needed, but future seminars will be held in other locations, with the suggestion the seminar be held on the East Coast in 2017. The first day of this year’s seminar will focus on helping new judges in the animal evaluation process. Everyone was once again encouraged to complete judge evaluation forms. These forms can easily be accessed from the website and are in many of the show catalogs. It was also suggested there be a way to electronically fill out the form and submit to the ABBA. Chris Shivers will be looking into the feasibility of this request. Weights and measures at the International Shows will occur at 7 AM Tuesday, March 2. It was announced that Gerald Young will be at the ABBA booth at the Houston International Show from 12 noon until 2 PM on Tuesday to check pedigree papers for group classes and also health papers for bred cows. It was decided that any ABBA-Approved Show could conduct weights and measures as long as there is a minimum of one person who is a current member of the ABBA Board of Directors in attendance and the show will be required to request a new parameters list from the ABBA for the weights and measures. The weights and measures held at shows other than the ABBA National and International show will only impact that particular show’s animal eligibility list. The possibility of changing the class breaks in some of the older classes at ABBA-sanctioned shows was discussed. The committee will look at information presented and will discuss this further during the April meeting in Louisiana. Four judge’s names were presented and suggested to the TJBA for their state show: Doug Husfeld, Doug Satree, Cole Young and Caleb Harang. Judge replacements were decided; Doug Satree had been selected for the National Show in 2016 and had a conflict, Jim Reeves will replace Satree and be one of the judges for the National Show. Reggie Rodriquez will judge the Kissimmee Valley Livestock Show, and Heath Lucas will judge the Arkansas State Fair.

The Research and Breed Improvement Committee report was given by Jim-Bob Trant. The committee had a four-hour meeting. Dr. Joe Paschal was at the meeting as an advisor. The committee addressed an email concern from a member and would like to investigate the possibility and creating a video about culling practices and scrotal data collection. A scrotal circumference EPD was discussed and Dr. Pascal gave input on this matter. The ABBA will start publishing a scrotal circumference EPD including data collected from bulls ranging from 12 to 18 months and this EPD will be compiled under Breed Plan Criteria and Suggestions. Ultrasound scanning of show cattle was discussed. The committee felt it would be a burden for breeders if ultrasounding show cattle was mandatory, so the committee decided that starting at the 2017 ABBA International Show in Houston a “Better Beef Contest” will be held, modeled after the Better Beef contest held at the All American. Prizes will be presented to the winners of the contest. An update on the 2016 Bull test was given, currently 85 bulls and 29 breeders are planning to participate.
The ABBA Youth Activities Committee met and the Chairman, Wade Watkins, gave the report. The financial situation was reviewed and there were no substantial changes. Potential new youth activities during 2016 were discussed, including Leadership seminars to be held this summer and motivational speakers for the All American. Carlos Guerra gave a report on The Brahman Foundation. The committee reviewed the All American rules, and there were a few updates to the wording of the rules and the changes were accepted. There were a few rule additions, such as no ranch signs will be allowed on display at the All American. Signs can be on display that have owner names or family names on them. No private sales or private sale promotion will be allowed at the All American. The show ring code of ethics that the ABBA currently adheres to was adopted by the All American. Utilization of ABBA funds was discussed and an additional $10,000 was given back to the youth. The discussion of weights and measures came up and a mandatory meeting was called, to be held with the AJBA and their members, to determine what the youth would like to do about weights and measures. There are three choices: 1) Handle the same way that the ABBA National Show handles weights and measures. 2) Do not weigh and measure at all. 3) Continue weights and measures as they have done in the past.

The ABBA Marketing Committee was presented by the chairman, Arnold Saunders. The ABBA National F-1 Sale, to be held March 19, will be dedicated to Bill Crain. The ABBA Spring Select Sale will be held April 30, 2016.

The chairman of the ABBA International Committee, Scott Satterfield, reported that plans are going forward for the ABBA Meet and Greet, which will be held Thursday evening after the International Brahman Female Show. The sponsors of this event include Elgin Breeding Service and the Greater Miami Convention and Visitors Bureau. The ABBA will host a cocktail event and have a booth during the 2016 World Brahman Congress in Australia. The International Committee was asked to provide a list of international judges for the show committee to utilize in their judge selection process. The committee recommended contacting all Brahman associations worldwide and ask them for a list of recommended judges, which will in turn be presented to the Show Committee. The committee discussed the requested educational seminars to be held in Panama as well as the Expica in Nicaragua. A trade show in Ho Chi Mingh, Vietnam was discussed, and it was decided that Chris Shivers would attend. Other upcoming international events discussed included: the National Brahman show in Villahermosa, Mexico; the National Brahman Show in Panama City, Panama; the Cebu Congress in Bogota, Colombia; and the National Brahman Show in Peten, Guatemala.

The ABBA Membership and Member Services Committee discussed the 2016 ABBA Membership Convention to be held in Shreveport, Louisiana on August 19-20. Promotion of this event will need to be continued. The committee had a subcommittee explore changing the age requirement to join ABBA. No action was taken at this time on that investigation.

The ABBA Executive Committee received a written complaint from a member about a show ring ethics violation. During Executive Session the committee took up this ethics violation as violative conduct, and the party that violated the Show Ring Ethics will be sent a letter and all points that this breeder’s animals won at this show will be revoked. The committee reviewed end of year financials. Carlos Guerra gave a report about The Brahman Foundation, twenty new ABBA members were approved, and the board discussed and approved an aged cow moratorium. The Committee discussed a proposed rule revision in regards to DNA testing. The committee identified four situations that could necessitate DNA testing in both the individual and/or the parents. They are as follows: 1) Any time in a reciprocity relationship where an animal is receiving ABBA papers because of a relationship the ABBA has with an international breed association. 2) When animals are clones. 3) AI calves may need to be matched to their sire and dam. 4) ET calves may need to be matched to sire and dam. All of these changes will be recommended back to the subcommittee for further investigation and reviewed at upcoming meetings. An incident regarding semen imported into the United States through improper channels was discussed. It was decided that 22 animals sired by this bull would keep their ABBA papers; however, the 77 unused breeding certificates held by 5 breeders would no longer be honored. Additionally, they will explore a rule change to ensure offspring that are born in the USA of animals holding ABBA reciprocity papers will only be registered if the genetics have been imported properly with USDA protocol.

The next four director meetings were scheduled and will be held on the following dates: April 28-29 in Opelousas, Louisiana (held in conjunction with the ABBA Select Sale); August 18-19 in Shreveport, Louisiana (held in conjunction with the ABBA Membership Convention); October 17-19 in Dallas, Texas (held in conjunction with the ABBA National Show); January 15-16 in Fort Worth, Texas (held in conjunction with the Fort Worth Stock Show).