By Valley Ag Voice Staff
The Valley Ag Voice is proud to announce this year’s Cattleman and Cattlewoman of the year. Both are being recognized for their commitment to advance the industry in the ever-challenging regulatory environment in California. However, we are very proud of the fact that our contributing writer Austin Snedden is one of this year’s honorees.
Snedden is deeply rooted in the cattle ranching past of Kern County. His mother Susie Snedden was a Twisselman and his father Richard Snedden are names most ranchers would recognize in Kern County. Austin was raised on the family ranch in Southwest Kern County, where he was exposed to the pioneering spirit both his parents shared.
Austin and his wife Sarah are raising their four children Ryah (14), Rainey (12), Sonora (9), and Ezra (7) on the same ground Austin was raised. He and his children are integral to the farming operation and get to work right along with Susie and Richard to raise and run commercial cows. Besides commercial cows, the Sneddens also raise a herd of Hereford cows, Red Angus cows, and bulls to sell.
As a current member of the Kern County Cattleman’s Association Board of Directors, Austin has long been committed to advocating for the industry. He makes trips to lobby legislators, including traveling to D.C. As a former President of the Kern County Cattleman’s Association, you know he is not shy when it comes to sharing his opinions on the industry. In fact, that is why we at the Valley Ag Voice sought out a prolific writer with humor and conviction. Many of you may have recognized his articles in the Valley Ag Voice, aptly titled the Cattleman’s Corner.
This year’s Cattlewoman, Gloria Woody Graham, comes from a long and storied cattle family as well. She was raised on the Woody Ranch that is now in its 158th year of operation. The first girl born into the Woody family in eighty years. Today, she carries on a legacy her great-grandfather started in 1862.
Gloria and her husband Rusty Graham have been married since 1968 and were blessed with two children, Kim and Josh. Gloria spent 22 years working for Rusty and raising the kids. In 1996, she went to work for the Kern County Fair and retired in 2015. Since retiring she has been enjoying her time working on the ranch.
Her family roots run deep and her family clearly shares the passion and energy for ranching that her ancestors did!