May 29th Marketing and Grazing Practices to Survive Drought

An HMI Open Gate Workshop @ the Ranch

Our Ranney Ranch Day is part of HMI’s Open Gate Learning Series.Open Gates are peer-to-peer action-based learning days with short presentations and small group exercises geared for participants to share discoveries and management techniques with guidance from experienced facilitators and producers. Whether you are an agricultural producer, wildlife manager, local agency representative, or just interested in ranching, land stewardship, and grassfed beef, this is a day for you.

What to Expect

At the Open Gate: Ranney Ranch Day, you will…

  • See what fellow land managers are doing to maintain land health and profitability in a changing environment
  • Learn how to mitigate the effects of drought with good ranching practices and infrastructure
  • Develop skills to identify indicators of good soil health and effective means to monitor soil health
  • Explore profitable grassfed beef marketing practices
  • Discuss practical grazing strategies to improve water use and land productivity
  • Understand how ranch infrastructure development can pay for itself with increased productivity
  • Hear how Holistic Management enables producers to better manage risk, make better decisions and enjoy the benefits of sustainable agriculture.

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Advanced registration is $20 per person (includes lunch). You can register for the day by clicking on the button to the right. On-line registration closes May 24, 2015.  Walk in registration is $30 per person, if available.  Register soon, as we have limited space available. Sorry, registration fees are non-refundable. If you are unable to register online, please fill out the HMI Event Registration Form and mail along with your check or money order to:

Registration Dept.
5941 Jefferson St. NE, Ste B
Albuquerque, NM 87109

This is a rain or shine event, and we will be spending much of our time out on the land. Please bring appropriate clothing, footwear, and your own water bottle.


Friday May 29, 2015
9:00 Registration
9:30 Introductions & Orientation – A. Adams
9:35 Ranney Ranch: How to Survive a Drought – N. Ranney & M. Johnson
10:00 Ranch Tour: Forage Production, Water and Fence Infrastructure – N. Ranney & M. Johnson
11:00 Assessing Forage Inventory Exercise – L. Marez and N. Ashcroft
12:30 Lunch
1:30 Exploring Ranch Improvements and Return on Investment – N. Ranney, M. Johnson & K. Lujan
2:30 Marketing Grassfed Beef for Profit – N. Ranney, J. Ranney, and L. Bower
3:15 Government-Funded Producer Programs – A. Sandoval, D. Hughes, and J. Hartung
3:45 Q&A & Evaluations
4:00 Adjourn

Location & Directions

Ranney Ranch
Box 376, Corona,
NM 88318

Ranney Ranch, Corona, New Mexico, Holistic Management practitionersThe Ranney Ranch is a family ranch in the beautiful high mesa country of central New Mexico.  Since 2003, the ranch has practiced holistic grazing practices, cleared considerable acreage of juniper and implemented water harvesting techniques. The result, even during drought, has been lower costs, higher animal weights, a remarkable resurgence of native cool and warm season grasses, increased water holding capacity in the rangeland soils and higher levels of Soil Organic Carbon.

Ranney Ranch Grassfed Beef, raised on nothing more than native grasses and mother’s milk, is direct-marketed to customers nationwide and is “Certified Grassfed” by the American Grassfed Association and also certified by Animal Welfare Approved.

Directions:  In Willard, head southeast on St. Rt. 42 in the direction of Corona. Follow 42 all the way into Corona. (approx 35 miles). Take a right into town on 54. Take a left on 247 over the railroad tracks and across from the Exxon station. Drive approximately 12.5 miles to the entrance on the left hand side of the road.

There is a big green Ranney Ranch sign. Come on in to the barns and park there. Follow the road to the left from the barns and meet at the house for registration.


Nancy Ranney, Holistic Management practitioner, Ranney Ranch, New MexicoNancy Ranney, Ranney Ranch Owner

Nancy Ranney is an owner of the Ranney Ranch, owned and operated by the Ranney family since 1968. Nancy has encouraged the shift to Holistic Management of the ranch since 2002 and has developed the AGA (American Grassfed Association) and AWA (Animal Welfare Approved) certified grassfed beef program for the ranch.  She is a board member of the Quivira Coalition and President of the Southwest Grassfed Livestock Alliance (SWGLA).

Melvin Johnson, Ranney Ranch, Holistic Management practitionerMelvin Johnson, Ranney Ranch Manager

Melvin Johnson is a 4th generation rancher. He has served on his local Soil and Water Conservation board for 20 years and is presently Vice-chair for Region 6 of the New Mexico Association of Conservation Districts. He has attended the Graham School of Husbandry and the Noble School of Grazing. He has managed Ranney Ranch for thirty-one years along with having his own herd.

joseph ranney, holistic management practitioner, new mexicoJoseph Ranney, Ranney Ranch

Joseph Ranney represents the next generation of the Ranney family and manages the online grassfed beef sales for the Ranney Ranch Grassfed Beef program.

Ann Adams, Holistic Management Certified Educator & Director of Programs, HMI

Dr. Ann Adams, Holistic Management Certified Educator & Director of Programs, HMIAnn has designed and implemented training programs and educational events for both trainers and practitioners, including two USDA-funded, three-year training programs for beginning farmers. She regularly teaches classes (onsite and distance learning) and provides consulting in Holistic Management for family farms and ranches.  As Program Director, Ann focuses on supporting the Holistic Management community, and currently oversees HMI’s Certified Educator training program. Ann is the Editor of HMI’s bi-monthly publication, IN PRACTICE, and also develops on-farm learning opportunities.

Leigh Ann Maraz, New Mexico Holistic Mangement, hmiLeigh Ann Marez, NMSU Guadalupe County Extension Office

Leigh Ann Marez is the County Program Director for theGuadalupe County Extension Office for NMSU. She oversees programming in Guadalupe County, which includes a diverse mix of agriculture, 4-H/youth development, family and consumer sciences, and community economic development. She works closely with producers to provide timely and relevant educational programs focused on profitable livestock and farming production practices. She is actively involved in promoting sustainable agriculture practices by developing and initiating community gardening and farming projects.

Nick Ashcroft, NMSU Dept of Extension Animal Sciences and Natural Resources

Nick Ashcroft, Holistic Management, HMI,, New MexicoDr. Nick Ashcroft is the Extension Range Management Specialist at New Mexico State University in the Department of Extension Animal Sciences and Natural Resources. He is a member of the Range Improvement Task Force (RITF) and provides New Mexico citizens with relevant information on rangeland ecology, monitoring and management. As a member of the RITF, Nick helps resolve rangeland conflicts with science and conducts applied research. Dr. Ashcroft’s previous work includes agricultural economics and federal land policy analysis.

Alexandra Sandoval, Dept of Game and Fish

alexa sandoval, holistic management, new mexico, hmiDirector Alexandra Sandoval, a 21-year employee of the Department of Game and Fish, began her career with the department in 1994 as a district wildlife officer (game warden) in Roswell and Clayton. She went on to become a wildlife specialist, federal grant manager, licensing supervisor and Administrative Services Division chief and chief financial officer. She holds a master’s degree in Business Administration from New Mexico Highlands University and a bachelor’s degree in Wildlife Management from Colorado State University and is a graduate of the National Conservation Leadership Institute.

Laurie Bower, SWGLA

laurie-bower, hmi, holistic management, swglaWith over 25 years of experience in marketing and 10 years in non-profit development and local food systems, Laurie Bower currently serves in her sixth year as director of the Southwest Grassfed Livestock Alliance (SWGLA), which represents thousands of small family farms throughout the Southwest.  SWGLA provides education and outreach to ranchers, farmers, consumers and all points in between to support grass-fed livestock.  Laurie also practices permaculture and land restoration on a small homestead in Ribera, New Mexico where she lives with her 2 horses and a flock of pigeons.

Debbie Hughes, NMACD

Debbie-Hughes, holistic management, hmiDebbie has been the Executive Director for the New Mexico Association of Conservation Districts (NMACD) for 21 years. She manages several programs and projects including the Technical Assistance Program (TSP) for USDA-NRCS farm bill program supported with 25 full time employees and over 40 private technical service provider contractors.  Debbie also administers the “Restore NM” program for Bureau of Land Management with contracts for $30 million over 10 years. The Restore NM program has improved over 3.5 million acres of New Mexico’s rangelands and riparian areas. Debbie and her family operate the Hughes Brothers Ranch and Hughes Brothers Hunting Service in the Guadalupe Mountains.

John Hartung, NM NRCS

John is the NM NRCS Southwest Area Range Management Specialist headquartered in Alamogordo, New Mexico.

Ken Lujan, Claunch-Pinto Soil & Water Conservation District

Ken Lujan is District Conservationist for the Claunch-Pinto Soil & Water Conservation District.


This event is made possible by a generous contribution from the Thornburg Foundation.

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Sponsorship Opportunities Available

The Ranney Ranch Day offers organizations, agencies and businesses a great opportunity to network with farmers and ranchers interested in sustainable agricultural ideas, products and services. We offer a variety of Sponsorship Opportunities to connect you with our community. Please contact Carrie Stearns, our Communications & Outreach Manager for more information.

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