R. A. "Rob" Brown, Jr. | 2018
Represents the fourth generation of the Brown family ranching legacy and excellence in Texas.
Born 1936 | Artist: Richard Steward Halstead (born 1947)
Impact & Accomplishments
R.A. “Rob” Brown, Jr. of Throckmorton, Texas, built R. A. Brown Ranch into one of the substantial ranches in the country that encompassed a Quarter Horse band, multiple seedstock breeds, commercial cow-calf herds, stocker operations, cattle feeding, and farming. His livestock have made a significant impact on the world's genetics.
With his amazing commitment to service, Brown has served in leadership roles for many state, regional and national organizations including the American Quarter Horse Association(AQHA), National Cattlemen's Beef Association, (NCBA) American Simmental Association (ASA), Senepol Cattle Breeders Association, National Beef Cattle Evaluation Consortium, Texas & Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association, (TSCRA) Texas Animal Health Commission, Texas Tech University and the Ranching Heritage Association.
Brown said, "This is the most prestigious award I could ever receive." Prior to this honor, the R.A. Brown Ranch has been awarded NCBA's Cattle Business of the Century, the AQHA's Best Remuda, BIF's Seedstock Producer of the Year and Rob has been inducted into the AQHA Hall of Fame and honored with the coveted Golden Spur award by the National Ranching Heritage Center.
Born in 1936, Brown was raised on the purebred and commercial cattle ranch in Throckmorton, Texas. In 1954 he enrolled in Texas Tech University and despite having dyslexia, became the first in his family to graduate from college. Rob married Peggy Donnell and they returned to the ranch working for his father. His entrepreneurial drive began to bring extra income to the ranch.
In 1965, Rob convinced his father to use the sound science he learned in college to begin a planned crossbreeding program blending the family's Hereford cattle with European breeds. In 1974, Rob became President of the American Simmental Association and also held the first cattle auction at the R.A. Brown Ranch. It has continually grown to where over 800 head of bulls, 600 females and 20 horses are auctioned each year. By 1979, Rob expanded his multi-breed seedstock herd with the development of Simbrah followed by the addition of Angus, Red Angus and Senepol over the next decade. His experience with different cattle breeds, along with his drive for innovation, led to the creation of the Hotlander composite in 1989, a combination of Simmental, Angus, Red Angus, Brahman and Senepol.
The ranch horse remuda at the R.A. Brown Ranch was an integral part of the ranch before AQHA was even founded. R.A. Brown Sr. was a founder of the Association and served on its executive committee in the '40s. Like his father, Rob quickly moved into a leadership position in the AQHA. Rob's priority throughout his life was that AQHA maintain as its foundation that Quarter Horses were, first and foremost, horses for working cowboys. AQHA had many major accomplishments during his presidency in 1995. A new database was brought online, and the membership topped 300,000 for the first time. He was responsible for bringing the state and regional associations into affiliation with AQHA, and built a program of matching funds, prize money and show standards. During his presidency, he provided the genesis for practical events like the AQHA Versatility Ranch Horse Competitions. While on the Executive Committee he was committed to funding research for genetic evaluation in the horse industry and continues to encourage the use of EPDs for breeding and selection of better horses.
Rob's focus on breeding the versatile equine has helped lead a popular and growing demand for ranch horses nationally. Today at the R.A. Brown Ranch, the famed Quarter Horses are still used daily for ranch work and have always been considered a partner and tool for the many cowboys who navigate the landscape of West Texas.
In an effort to take rodeo back to its roots of working ranch cowboys and horses competing as a team in everyday ranch activities, Rob, along with three other area ranchers, helped establish the Texas Ranch Roundup in 1981.Through the years this ranch rodeo and cowboy gathering has raised over $3.2 million for charities and started the continuously growing event of team ranch rodeo.
Throughout the years, Rob and Peggy's primary focus has been to instill love in the family and foster family relations. Rob is quick to give credit for their success to his lifelong bride and business partner, Peggy. The Browns have been progressive in generational transfer as well and have all four of their children and their families back at the ranch growing successful businesses.
Rob has lived by the motto of "be progressive yet practical, and embrace science while respecting tradition." Not only has he had a lasting impact on the industry living by this motto, he has instilled these values into his highly successful family, which will assure Brown family leadership for years to come
Did You Know?
The Texas Ranch Roundup is the “original” event designed to replicate the big cattle roundups of the late 1800s and early 1900s, and, in 1981 was the first of the hundreds of ranch rodeos that now occur all over North America. The first event committee determined that the participating ranches would be full-time, historic Texas cattle ranches and that the participants would be only owners, full-time hands, and immediate family members. They also determined that the ranch families should be involved outside the arena to showcase real ranch life and the talents that exist in the families.
The legacy of the great Texas ranches, the integrity of the participants, and the ranches’ dedication
to the benefitting charities has made the event successful beyond the wildest dreams of the founding group.
Through the years this ranch rodeo and cowboy gathering has raised over $3.2 million for charities - North Texas Rehabilitation Center in Wichita Falls, West Texas Rehabilitation Center in Abilene and West Texas Boys Ranch in San Angelo.
Courtesy of Beef Loving Texans