OSU college honors Connell resident Bill Bennett as 2007 Diamond Pioneer

October 19, 2007

CORVALLIS, Ore. - Bill Bennett, of Connell, Washington, was honored as a 2007 Diamond Pioneer by the Oregon State University College of Agricultural Sciences Wednesday (Oct. 17) in Corvallis.

He is one of 38 men and women who will be added to the college’s Diamond Pioneer Agricultural Achievement Registry at a luncheon hosted by Dean of Agriculture Thayne Dutson.

The registry, now in its 24th year, salutes the work of those 74 and older in agriculture and related fields and in their communities. Bennett was nominated for the registry by the Oregon State animal sciences department, along with his brothers, Don and Doug of Echo, Oregon.

Bennett, born and raised on a Shorthorn ranch, attended Washington State University and was in charge of WSU’s beef cattle breeding and performance testing program for six years. He became manager/partner with Harold Thompson at TT Herefords at Connell in 1963. The TT Hereford herd was sold in 1969 to Stone Hereford Ranch in Oregon. It was then that Bennett purchased the TT headquarters and started BB Cattle Company.

Over the years, he and his family have steadily expanded the scope of the ranch. All four of the Bennett children work as part of BB Cattle, which enjoys a worldwide market for their livestock with sales to eleven countries in Africa, Europe, South America and Australia.

Bennett has served in many leadership positions in beef cattle improvements and BB Cattle annually hosts breeding seminars in conjunction with its annual auction sales. He was honored as Seedstock Breeder of the Year by the international Beef Improvement Federation in 1988.

Others to be honored as 2007 Diamond Pioneers in Oregon are Thomas Allen, Jr., Larry Boersma, Kenton Chambers, Robert L. Stebbins, Benno Warkentin, J. Lowell Young and Tom Zinn, all of Corvallis; Don Bennett and Doug Bennett, Echo; Henry Turk, Grants Pass; John Leffel, Hillsboro.

W. L. Andersen, Independence; Doug and Janie Tippett, Joseph; Cleve and Ellie Dumdi, Junction City; Frank King and Eddie Meeker, Klamath Falls; Arleigh Isley, LaGrande; Louise Grothe and Neil (C.J.) Taylor, Lakeview; Don Denman, Medford; Everett Seagoe, Merlin; James D. Wilson, Monmouth.

Tom Uriu, Ontario; Thomas Bedell and Gene Newcomb, Philomath; William and Donna McCormack, Prineville; Robert Huckfeldt, Redmond; Betty Jo Smith, Shedd; Lawrence Fisher, Sublimity; Art and Marjorie Van Gilder, Wasco; Fred Recipients from out-of-state include: Hagelstein, Vancouver, WA; Ellington Peek, Cottonwood, CA; and William Kittredge, Missoula, MT.

Author: Len Calvert
Source: Loretta Austin