ORLANDO, FL – Mark Eisele, a Wyoming rancher, ascended to the role of NCBA president during the 2024 Cattle Industry Convention, held this week in Orlando, Florida. Eisele, along with his wife, Trudy, and their children, operate the historic King Ranch near Cheyenne, Wyoming, grazing both public and private lands.
Eisele’s focus during his time as president is to advocate for opportunities to strengthen the industry for future generations and for producers’ freedom to operate. Protecting property rights and reinforcing the cattle industry’s position as an ally in preserving open spaces and wildlife habitat through managed grazing practices will be a top priority.
“I manage both public and private lands and am often asked why protecting public land ranching is important. Aside from it being a part of how we raise cattle in the West, it’s also an important place to draw a line in the sand. If public lands are closed to cattle, or we’re regulated to the point that we can’t run cattle on public lands, it will only be a matter of time before activists end up on the doorstep of every farmer and rancher in the country, looking to restrict private property and water rights. I want NCBA to make sure that can’t happen,” he said. “Grazing is good and beef is a valuable protein. We need flexibility in the way we produce it. Those are the simple messages I want to get across to decision makers.”
During the year ahead, Eisele also expects to tackle ongoing Farm Bill negotiations as NCBA works to secure reauthorization of animal health provisions, expand the accessibility and funding of risk management and disaster relief programs, and protect voluntary conservation programs. The significant challenge posed by federal government tax policies, particularly the Death Tax, will also be top of mind.
“For me, one of the most meaningful things in my whole world is to have my family, my kids, my grandkids on the ranch with me. One of the reasons I want to serve, and do what I’m doing, is for my family. I also want to repay the mentors who gave me a leg up in the industry. And I’d like to do something significant with my time here on the planet. The agricultural landscape is evolving, and I am confident that with the same spirit that has carried our association through the last 125 years, we will continue to thrive, innovate and lead,” Eisele said.
The 2024 NCBA officer team, approved by the NCBA Board of Directors, took office at the end of this year’s convention. Buck Wehrbein of Nebraska was named president-elect and Gene Copenhaver of Virginia was elected vice president. Kim Brackett of Idaho was elected chair of the NCBA Policy Division and Skye Krebs of Oregon was elected policy vice chair. Dan Gattis of Texas and Nancy Jackson of Mississippi were elected as chair and vice chair, respectively, of the NCBA Federation division. Brad Hastings of Texas will continue to serve as NCBA treasurer.