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Source: Illinois Beef Association (IBA) news release

Illinois Beef Association (IBA) is proud to announce and welcome Reid Blossom as the new Executive Vice President, effective August 1, 2012.

Blossom was raised on a diversified livestock farm in Mississippi and was active in 4-H showing cattle and sheep and also participated in various competitive judging events. After graduating from the Mississippi School for Mathematics and Science, he attended Mississippi State University to receive a degree in Communications with a focus in Journalism.

For the last eight years, he's worked as the Director of Industry Relations and Youth Programs for the Alabama Cattlemen's Association. ACA is one of the largest two-hat cattlemen's associations in the country with an annual membership of over 11,000 members as well as a beef promotion program that includes the national and a state beef checkoff.

IBA President Jeff Beasley of Creal Springs, IL said, "Reid's experience with the Alabama Cattlemen's Association (ACA) is one key component that led us to this choice. ACA is quite possibly the most successful two-hat state affiliate in the country. The fact that he has worked in both the policy and Checkoff side of the industry with success, is just what we need here in Illinois."

Reid realizes he has a lot to learn about Illinois, yet is anxious to begin working with an energetic team of IBA leaders and board members spread throughout the state.

Blossom said, "We all have a common goal and that's to make the IBA the best it can be."

Uniquely, Blossom's Grandfather and family originated in Illinois in the Decatur area. Reid is a second generation cattle producer. He and his family own and operate Blossom Hill Farms and raise a small commercial cattle herd based in Simmental influenced genetics near Forrest, MS.

"My family and I are very excited about moving to Illinois. The state is home to a rich and highly visible agriculture base coupled with the country's third largest metro area. This means there's worlds of potential for IBA in our efforts to represent beef producers and also to increase beef demand with consumers," said Blossom.

Reid hopes his interest in cattle will carry on to his son Sam, who represents the third generation at Blossom Hill Farms. Blossom has been consumed with the cattle business and has demonstrated a passion for the livestock industry since his childhood through judging, showing and fitting cattle.

Jeff Beasley added, "The IBA Executive Committee is very excited to have Reid as our new Executive Vice-President. He is a young man who brings a great deal of energy and enthusiasm to the job, yet his level of maturity and experience is very obvious as well."

The Illinois State Fair will be great opportunity for both farmers and consumers to meet Reid and his family.

Reid said, "My wife Emily and I are looking forward to bringing our son Sam to the Illinois State Fair. We'll be there watching the junior and open beef cattle shows and we'll also be at the IBA's Ribeye Corral."

Blossom will be working on behalf cattlemen and women, to help communicate their beef stories to the public, challenges to policy leaders and the benefits of beef products to consumers. He will work to help both the Dues and Checkoff Divisions of the Illinois Beef Association to reach goals and strengthen the long-term sustainability of IBA.

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