Minnie Lou Bradley | 2014
Innovative rancher, a progressive land steward, a purebred Angus master breeder, and a renowned livestock industry leader.
Born 1931 | Artist: Richard Steward Halstead (born 1947)
Impact & Accomplishments
Minnie Lou Bradley is a rancher, a progressive land steward, a purebred Angus master breeder, and a renowned livestock industry leader.
Mrs. Bradley and her husband, Bill, purchased 3,300 acres in the Texas Panhandle in 1955 and began the Bradley 3 Ranch. Today, the expanded 10,000 acre Bradley 3 Ranch continues under the management of her daughter, Mary Lou, and son-in-law, James Henderson.
Beginning in 1997, Mrs. Bradley embarked on a land improvement program that began with brush and weed control and water management. Eventually, analysis of herd grazing habits using GPS information was implemented. The program of adding water sources, rotation grazing and brush and weed reduction has resulted in significant ranch resiliency in the face of recent record droughts. Her ranch has been recognized as a model of stewardship by Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service and by Dow Agri Services, among others.
Mrs. Bradley has been honored as a Master Breeder by Oklahoma State University and is one the nation's Top 50 U.S. Beef Industry Leaders, according to BEEF magazine. Her Bradley 3 Ranch's DNA identification program, begun in 1994, has made their Angus bulls highly sought after by commercial producers looking for superior genetics with proven carcass merit. In 2013 the ranch was recognized with the Beef Improvement Federation's Seedstock Producer of the Year Award.
Her lifelong habit of leadership began at an early age. In 1949, Mrs. Bradley was the first woman to major in Animal Husbandry at Oklahoma A&M, and she went on to earn her degree. She was the first woman to win the high individual overall award at the National Collegiate Livestock Judging Contest. She served as American Angus Association board member (1997 to 2003) and went on to be the AAA vice president in 2004. She then became the first-ever female president of the association in 2005.
Did You Know?
Bradley was inducted into the National Cowgirl Hall of Fame and Museum in 2006 and joined many of her early OSU mentors when her portrait was added to The Saddle & Sirloin Club in 2014.
“Surround yourself with good people. Not only good morally, but those that have ambition, that want to do something or have done something,” Bradley says. “I think that’s what makes you a better person.”
In 1949, Bradley made history when she enrolled in animal husbandry at Oklahoma A & M (now Oklahoma State University), and then signed up for the livestock judging team. She went on to win high individual in the Intercollegiate Livestock Judging contest in Chicago that year. When they gave out a tie clasp for an award, team coach Glen Bratcher said, “Don’t worry. We’ll have it made into a locket for you.”
Courtesy of Ranch House Designs/Paige Wallace, Director 2014
Learn more about Minnie Lou Bradley's impact.
Sally Northcutt, the first female faculty member of OSU’s Department of Animal Science now with Method Genetics LLC, also was among the many livestock professionals advocating for Bradley’s entry into the Saddle and Sirloin Club.
“Minnie Lou understands the impact animal genetics and producer management decisions have on seedstock and commercial cattle, and is exceedingly knowledgeable about the many facets of beef cattle production, from cow-calf through to consumer satisfaction,” Northcutt said. “I was a student when I first met Minnie Lou. She reminded me that we should work hard and not dwell on the extra time and effort we contribute, but consider our labors as service to the industry.”
Courtesy of Angus TV and the American Angus Association