Iowa auctioneer named champion
October 4, 2017
KANSAS CITY, Mo. – Jared Miller, Leon, Iowa, was named Champion at the 2018 World Livestock Auctioneer Championship (WLAC) Western Regional Qualifying Event. The auctioneering contest was hosted by Imperial Auction Market, Imperial, Neb., and was the first of three qualifiers. A total of 23 contestants competed for a top 10 placing, granting them a spot in the 2018 WLAC at Bloomington Livestock Exchange in Bloomington, Wis., hosted by the Livestock Marketing Association (LMA) in conjunction with LMA Annual Convention.
Miller, a third-generation auctioneer, remembers helping out the family auction business as a kid, running tickets during sales. He "fell in love with the chant," and decided to follow in his family's footsteps by becoming an auctioneer. Today, he sells regularly at two livestock auction markets as well as at other types of sales.
The 2018 auctioneering contest will mark Miller's fourth year of competing in the WLAC, and he hopes to bring the same mindset from the qualifier to the world championship. Additionally, Miller said he is looking forward to attending sessions at the LMA Annual Convention and interacting with other auctioneers and members of the livestock marketing industry while in Wisconsin.
He notes, "Competing in the WLAC has made me a better auctioneer and better person." Miller went on to add that he encourages livestock auctioneers to compete in the WLAC for those reasons and that he is "proof" of the many benefits the contest offers.
Miller was sponsored by Lamoni Livestock Market in Lamoni, Iowa.
Also making a great showing were Reserve Champion, Kyle Layman of Morland, Kan., and Runner-up Champion, Jason Santomaso of Sterling, Colo. The Top Rookie award is given to the high-scoring, first-time contestant, and Thad McDermott, Wellfleet, Neb., won the award and a spot in the 2018 WLAC. The following contestants complete the Top 10, also qualifying for the 2018 WLAC: Mitch Barthel, Perham, Minn.; Chuck Bradley, Alexandria City, Ala.; Eric Drees, Nampa, Idaho; Will Epperly, Dunlap, Iowa; Mike Godberson, Pawnee, Okla.; and Lander Nicodemus, Burns, Wyo.
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Each qualifying event is a live sale where the contestants auction cattle to actual bidders in the seats. Contestants are judged on the clarity of their auction chant; vocal quality; and their ability to catch bids and conduct the sale. Judges are livestock market owners and managers from across the United States. The 2018 WLAC Western Regional Qualifier was judged by Darrell Ailshie, Tennessee Livestock Producers, Inc., Columbia, Tenn.; Seth Crain, Union Commission Co, Inc., Hondo, Texas; Doug Dietterle; Faith Livestock Auction, LLC, Faith, S.D.; John Korrey, 2002 World Livestock Auctioneer Champion, Iliff, Colo.; and Bill Patton, South Central Regional Stockyard, Vienna, Mo.
Additional contestants who competed are Ross Annett, Brooks, Alberta; Bill Cook, Billings, Mont.; Greg Goggins, Billings, Mont.; Sam Hansen, Sisseton, S.D.; Craig Heinen, Cawker City, Kan.; Kirby Hill, Paris, Texas; Brennin Jack, Prince Albert, Saskatchewan; Dillon Lambley, Burke, S.D.; Josh Larson, Haxtun, Colo.; Daniel Otte, Rushville, Neb.; Ethan Schuette, Washington, Kan.; Lonnie Stripe, Humeston, Iowa; Tyler Sudik, Ceresco, Neb.; Layne Weber, Lander, Wyo.; and Curtis Wetovick, Fullerton, Neb.
About the World Livestock Auctioneer Championship
In June 1963, the Livestock Marketing Association held the first annual World Livestock Auctioneer Championship (WLAC) at the Cosmopolitan Hotel in Denver, Colorado. The purpose: to spotlight North America's top livestock auctioneers and to salute their traditionally important role in the competitive livestock marketing process. That year, 23 auctioneers from the United States and Canada sold the same 20 head of cattle over and over again.
The contest was held at hotels until 1967, when it traveled to its first LMA member market. Since then the WLAC has been held in conjunction with the LMA Marketing Industry Convention at member markets around the U.S. and Canada. Recent locations include California, Missouri, Montana, Tennessee, Kansas, South Dakota and Alberta, Canada.
Though the rules have changed, the enthusiasm for the competition hasn't. On average each year, nearly 100 auctioneers enter the qualifying events and only 31 (10 from each qualifying event, one from the auctioneering competition at Calgary Stampede) are selected to compete in the WLAC. The championship consists of three stages: the regional qualifying events held at different markets around the country, followed by the semi-finals and the finals that are held each June in conjunction with the LMA Annual Convention. Contestants competing for the World Champion title must be 18 years old, employed as a livestock auctioneer and sponsored by a local auction market that shares in the favorable publicity generated by the winners.
LMA is proud to sponsor an event that brings together North America's top livestock auctioneers in a competition that showcases professionalism and promotes the auction method of selling livestock.
–Livestock Marketing Association