King Finds Success With Rent-A-Bull, Expands Into Second Venture

It’s been eleven years since Jeff King retired from the military and moved back to Palermo to live on a third generation ranch to try his hand at ranching. When he returned he started looking for a niche in the livestock market and started a program called “Rent-A-Bull”. When he was interviewed ten years ago he was just starting his second season with the program that he compared to test-driving a car. At that time he had five bulls in the program. Last year he had what he says was his best year yet when he sold 112 bulls and leased another 158. Last year he says they went over the 1000th bull sold. His operation has grown considerably as he added five barns on both sides of the road on his ranch just northwest of Palermo. However, his goal and his program remain with the same basic principles. Producers can lease a bull in the spring and then buy it either in the fall or the next season if they want. They can also continue to lease the next season if that is their choice. He says that 80% of his sales come that fall as the producer realizes that his claims about his bull’s quality and disposition are more than true. He and his wife Stephanie raise their bulls from calves, hand feeding them twice a day. Other than maybe a handful of the bulls that he calls shy, he says you can scratch anything out there. The majority of his clientele are older producers and he says that disposition is important for them as they find themselves not threatened by the bull. He also says that many of the producers find that they when they come to the Lazy J Ranch, they can spend as much time as they like, looking at the bulls and finding the one that is just right for their operation, as opposed to the rush and hurry they experience at the auction ring. His customer base continues to grow as word spreads about the quality of his bulls. Ten years ago, the majority of his leases and sales were going within fifteen miles of home. This past year, he delivered bulls to Wisconsin, South Dakota and Minnesota. As the reputation of the company spreads, possibly through word of mouth or the Internet, he gets calls from much further away from home. Jeff refers to Rent-A-Bull as a good hobby that went out of control. Many of his sales come over the phone to repeat customers. Customers usually talk to Stephanie, who Jeff credits for a good part of their success. She handles about 90% of the selections for customers as well as selecting all of their herd bulls.   Login or Subscribe to view full stories.

Change Of Duties At RTC

As of January 1, 2015 RTC Assistant General Manager Shane Hart is heading up the Cooperative and CEO/General Manager Royce Aslakson has moved into a support position until his retirement date of June 1, 2015. Royce started at RTC on April 1, 1987 as a trainee for Office Manager and on January 1, 1988 he became Office Manager. He was promoted to Assistant General Manager on January 1, 1998 and became General Manager on September 1, 2001. Chief Executive Officer (CEO) was added to the General Manager title in 2004. Shane started at RTC on April 8, 1998 as an Accountant and on January 1, 2001 was promoted to Office Manager. He became Human Resources Manager on March 1, 2007 and was promoted to Assistant General Manager on January 1, 2009. Royce says, “RTC has been a great place to work. The time has come to turn over the reins to a younger mind.” He is looking forward to spending more time with family in retirement, especially his grandkids. Shane echoes Royce’s sentiments that RTC has been and continues to be a great place to work. He says, “I thank Royce for his leadership to RTC, his mentorship to me, and his friendship to all. It has truly been a pleasure to work for him.” Shane is excited and grateful for the opportunity to be the next CEO/General Manager at RTC. He says, “I look forward to working with the RTC Board of Directors and the entire RTC membership.” Royce adds, “Shane will do a great job leading RTC into the future. My best wishes to Shane and the Board, Management and Staff as they face the technologies of the future.” Shane will become CEO/Manager as of Royce’s retirement on June 1, 2015. RTC customers are invited to join Royce and Shane for coffee and conversation at the following events. Wednesday, April 8th from 9:00-10:30 a.m. at the New Town RTC office, 202 College Drive and 2:30-4:00 p.m. at the Watford City RTC office, 601 14th Street SW. Thursday, April 9th from 9:00-10:30 a.m. at Kenmare One Stop Burger Shop, 516 6th Street NE and 2:30-4:00 p.m. at Garrison Fezziwigs, 101 N Main Street. Friday, April 10th from 2:00-4:00 p.m. at Parshall American Legion, 16 Main Street N.   Login or Subscribe to view full stories.

Area Organizations Among Grant Recipients

St. Joseph’s Community Health Foundation awarded $500,000.00 in grants to area organizations on Wednesday, Mar. 18. St. Joseph’s Community Health Foundation is an independent public charity foundation set up with proceeds donated by the Sisters of St. Francis from the sale of a local hospital in 1998. Over $5.3 million dollars have been granted to area organizations to benefit the residents in the counties of Bottineau, Burke, McHenry, McLean, Mountrail, Pierce, Renville, Rolette, Sheridan, Ward, and Wells. A board of directors governs the Foundation. St. Joseph’s Community Health Foundation grants funds to promote and support the improvement, availability and provision of the mental, physical and spiritual and emotional needs for people residing in the eleven counties served by the Foundation. The Foundation meets this goal by welcoming grant requests from area agencies committed to meeting the needs of residents in our service area. The Foundation may also identify an area of need in NorthCentral North Dakota and fund an initiative. Grants were awarded to the following area organizations. Bike the Border received $2,500 for shower trailer replacement. Juvenile Drug Court of NW District Court received $1,000 to provide incentives for good behavior to juveniles in the Juvenile Drug Court System dealing with drugs and alcohol. The Mountrail Community Food Pantry received $5,000 in special needs fund in collaboration with Mountrail County Social Services to provide propane and deal with accessibility issues to home items not covered by other programs. Mountrail County Medical Center received $7,500 for improvements to the MCMC emergency room including a portable ultrasound unit. Food Pantries in the area will share in a grant of $20,000.00 based on the number of people served at  Login or Subscribe to view full stories.

Cub Scouts Hold Pinewood Derby

Stanley’s Cub Scouts held their annual Pinewood Derby on Saturday, Mar. 22 at the Mountrail County Fair Building. Scouts raced against those in their own age groups to determine first through third place. Each Scout received a participation medal, while those in first through third place earned a trophy. Placers from the Tiger Den, the first graders, were Jonah Digman, first place; Matthew Bacor, second place; and Aaden Wyatt, third place. Placers from the Wolf Den, the second graders, were Martin Heberlie, first place; Blake Durso, second place; and Max Johnson, third place. Placers from the Bear Den, the third graders, were Jace Digman, first place; Jacob Dick, second place; and Carter Jenkins, third place. Placers from the Webelos, the fourth graders, were Tommy Williams, first place, Jacob Littlefield, second place; and Dean Anderson, third place. Three Scouts also received individual awards for the day. Best Car in Show went to Colt Nohr. Most   Login or Subscribe to view full stories.

Bakken Companies Draw Blood for Community

United Blood Services urges volunteers to “find the hero” in them, and 141 industry employees representing 34 companies did just that in February. The North Dakota Petroleum Council and its members hosted the First Annual Battle of the Bakken Blood Drive, a friendly competition that pitted oil companies against one another to try and increase donations to UBS. Companies garnering the most volunteers received $1,000 for the charity of their choice. Among the companies hosting UBS in their offices was Westcon Construction, who had 27 employees donate, a majority of whom were new donors. Westcon finished a close second in the contest portion of the blood drive, which tracked the number of friends, family, employees and others who donated blood on behalf of the company. Whiting Petroleum, winner of the Food and Fun Toy and Food Drive, won again in the category of 51 or more employees and a contribution of $1,000 will be donated to Wounded Warriors on their behalf. Panther Pressure Testing of Watford City again won the category of 50 and fewer employees again with a contribution   Login or Subscribe to view full stories.