named Kind Cowboy
By Robert Stevens
Mar. 29, 2018
EPHRAIM—The Sanpete Cattlemen’s Association honored this year’s King Cowboy—a cattleman from Sterling who started at a young age.
Ron Christensen of Hot Shoe Red Angus, a cattle ranch in Sterling, was named the 2018 King Cowboy on Thursday, March 22.
Like all recipients of the King Cowboy award, Christensen was voted in by the King Cowboys who came before him.
“It’s a privilege and an honor to be able to accept this,” he said at the Sanpete Cattlemen’s Association banquet held in Ephraim.
Christensen is a first-generation cowboy, and he said he knew from a very young age he was meant to be a rancher.
He was asked why he stuck with his dream through ups and downs. He responded, “Hell, I don’t know. I think it chose me at a young age as much as I chose it. I love the challenge, the work, the possibilities, the journey and the fact that I am outdoors. My happy place is on my horse riding through the cows on cool fall afternoons.”
Before he was 10 years old, Christensen had laid out his plans to be a cattleman and regularly watched the want ads for land and stock.
He raised a few calves as a boy, and in high school he chose to pursue rodeo instead of traditional athletics.
Christensen went on an LDS mission after graduating from high school in his hometown of Draper. After returning from his mission, he packed up his belongings and headed to Rexburg, Idaho, where he earned his degree in ranch management from BYU-Idaho.
After returning to Utah, he refinanced his truck to buy his first five cattle.
He bought six more the next year, and in 2017 he doubled his herd size from 200 to 400.
More than 85 percent of his herd is registered red Angus, and although his ranch property is in Sterling, he keeps cattle in both Utah and Wyoming.
Christensen said he has a love for the local cattle industry. He has served as president and vice president of the Sanpete Cattlemen’s Association, as well as second vice president of the Utah Cattlemen’s Association.
Since Christensen is living a childhood dream, it seems fitting that the Sanpete Cattlemen’s Association also announced on the same night that it would be starting a scholarship program to help provide an education in ranching or farming to the child of a member.