Colorado Ranching Legacy Program

2016 Applicant Information and Schedule

Application for Full Program

Application for Leadership Only Program

Ranching started in Colorado more than 150 years ago. Still, to this day, it is a major contributor to Colorado’s economy; while at the same time keeping millions of acres of open space intact. However, due to economic changes and other challenging obstacles, the number of ranches is declining. To assist in the development of the next generation of ranchers, the Colorado Ranching Legacy Program is designed to equip young and beginning ranchers with the tools to be successful.

The Colorado Ranching Legacy Program is a cooperative endeavor between Colorado State University and the Colorado Cattlemen’s Association, designed to give beginning ranchers fundamental skills in range livestock production and ranch management. 

The 2015 class began in January and will continue through the year with a series of classroom trainings, hands-on opportunities, and practicums.

There will be five practicums spanning one full year covering a series of educational programs. Sessions will focus on topics such as grazing management, developing a grazing plan, ranch economics, ranch management, breeding, genetics, and much, much, more. Participants will also utilize critical thinking through a variety of case studies that will be presented throughout the course. Participants will hear from both university experts as well as industry elite leaders. Development and access to management tools such as business plans will be provided.

The Colorado Ranching Legacy Program provides the following benefits for your business: 

  • Mentoring
  • Entrepreneurship
  • Business training
  • Marketing strategies
  • Basic livestock practices
  • Agricultural credit
  • Information processing
  • Business plan development

Participants will develop the ability to efficiently use decision support tools in whole ranch management and marketing alternatives dealing with:

  • Grazing strategies and systems
  • Methods of managing market risk
  • Calving and weaning dates
  • Winter livestock nutrition
  • Cull cow management
  • Feed rations and seasonal mineral supplements
  • Developing individualized unit of cost of production
  • Matching calving and weaning seasons with forage environments
  • Livestock nutrition and cow body condition scoring
  • Family business and working relationships
  • Protein and seasonal mineral supplements
  • Leadership development

For additional information, contact Erin Karney at (303) 431-6422, or by email at 


2016 Ranching Legacy Class

(left to right - Front row: Eric Childress, Sarah Childress,  Jean Gottenborg, Bruce Enever. Back row: Craig, Zach Thode. Not pictured: John Wagner, Josh Gillespie.


 The 2015 Colorado Ranching Legacy program participants



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