Montana: Simmental Association honors Wade Shafer |

Montana: Simmental Association honors Wade Shafer

BOZEMAN, MT — Dr. Wade Shafer, Bozeman, Montana is a recipient of the 2022 World Simmental-Fleckvieh Federation Golden Book Award, which is the American Simmental Association’s (ASA) highest honor. Selected by the ASA Board of Trustees, recipients of this award are lifelong promoters of the Simmental breed. Shafer was recognized during ASA’s Fall Focus event, on Saturday, August 27, in Roanoke, Virginia.

In 2013, Shafer became the sixth executive vice president of the American Simmental Association, joining Dale Lynch, Don Vaniman, Earl Peterson, Brian Kitchen, and Jerry Lipsey. He has maintained a legacy of management that has enabled the organization to continue its leadership within the beef cattle industry.

Shafer grew up on his parents’ Shoestring Ranch located near Detroit Lakes, Minnesota, the oldest child and only boy in a family that included his four sisters. Shoestring Ranch began a half-century affiliation with the Simmental breed in 1972.

He matriculated at nearby North Dakota State University, receiving a bachelor’s degree in animal science; then enrolled at Colorado State University where he earned a master’s and PhD in animal breeding and genetics, while concentrating on quantitative genetics and bio-economics simulation modeling. Returning home to manage the ranch, he expanded what had been a hobby farm to 500 head and added cooperators representing around 500 head. During that period, up to 200 bulls were marketed annually. The herd was dispersed in 2001.

A life-long fascination and understanding of science led him to accept a position with the ASA under Dr. Jerry Lipsey. When Lipsey retired in 2013, Shafer was the obvious choice to move into the EVP position.

Now in his ninth year at the helm, he has reinforced and enhanced a continued emphasis on beef cattle science, which has been the lifeblood of the Association since its inception. He has assembled a staff of industrious, dedicated professionals who worked tirelessly to support members and keep the organization on an even keel during the difficult COVID-19 pandemic.

Under his watch, International Genetics Solutions (IGS) has grown beyond expectations to include over 20 beef cattle organizations from four countries, and is now the largest genetic evaluation of beef cattle in the world. Significantly, Shafer also directed the creation and integration of ASA’s economic indexes and oversaw changing of the field staff model.

In addition, Shafer engineered sale of the original ASA headquarters, resulting in enough capital to build a new, modern building, while providing an infusion of funds for the ASA treasury. Shafer and his wife Kathy have four children and four grandchildren.

Founded in 1968, the American Simmental Association is headquartered in Bozeman, MT. ASA is committed to leveraging technology, education and collaboration to accelerate genetic profitability for the beef industry. In keeping with its commitment, ASA, along with its partners, formed International Genetic Solutions — the world’s largest genetic evaluation of beef cattle.

–American Simmental Association

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