This week's “Beyond the Winners Circle” features Tyler DeReu from Fairbury, Nebraska. We invite you to read our interview with Tyler below. Please continue to check back weekly for our next edition of “Beyond the Winners Circle”.
Where do you live?
I currently live on an acreage in Fairbury, NE. I grew up in Geneseo, IL on a small family farm.
Where did you attend college? What was your major?
I received my associate’s degree at Blackhawk Community College in Kewanee, IL. I then transferred to Western Illinois University in Macomb, IL and received my bachelor’s degree in Animal Science.
What is your job/career?
I am a Farm Loan Officer for the USDA Farm Service Agency. I work daily on beginning farmer loans, operating notes, and farm loans. My job covers the two Nebraska counties: Jefferson & Thayer.
I also own a 150 head boer goat operation specializing in show wethers. I market goats all over the Midwest. In only three years of operation I have had a great run and continue to grow and expand.
How has showing impacted your career?
Throughout showing I met so many wonderful people that have been great contacts in life! Without these contacts I wouldn’t be where I am today, in both my career and the show goat industry. These people helped guide me into an agricultural profession. Also, I learned from multiple hours of working with my show lambs that went on to become champions that hard work pays off! This is true for my profession as well.
What do you feel your biggest accomplishment is thus far?
My biggest accomplishment has been building up my goat herd from nothing just 3 years ago, to where it is today. By no means where I want to be, but getting closer. It takes time to get there. In those 3 years, I have sold goats that have been competitive at numerous State Fairs and I have also sold many class winners on the national, state, and county levels.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
In 10 years I see myself working in the financial industry in a small Ag based bank. I will still be raising show goats and be back to my home state of Illinois.
What was your favorite show? Why?
My favorite show was NAILE in Louisville, KY. This show is known for its high competition level since everyone in the country attends! Also, it was nice to catch up with people that you see only a few times a year!
What was your favorite lamb you showed? Why?
I had shown a ewe lamb named Ghetto Booty (pictured at right). For her time, she was flat good.
What did you enjoy the most about showing?
Meeting new people.
What do you miss most about showing?
I’m still involved in the show industry with my show goat herd. I will always be involved in the show industry and willing to put back into what I got out of it.
If you could go back and do one thing over (showing wise), what would it be?
Enjoy it more. Relax.
Who helped you along the way the most?
Brad & Jeff Ellerbrock have helped me out the most. When I started working for these two in junior high, I had very little knowledge of the club lamb industry. I was competitive at local county shows, but that’s about as far as it went. More importantly they taught me that hard work pays off, and you get out of something what you put into it. This has helped me out a GREAT deal in my own show goat herd. You have to be dedicated, and be willing to give up about anything for whatever goal you have in mind. They took me under their wing and got me to where I am today.
Piece of advice for those looking to go into your career?
My one piece of advice for someone going into a financial career is to major in finance in college. I majored in animal science and it took some time to understand some aspects of my job with very little prior finance knowledge. (All I knew was how to spend money, not manage it. Two very different things!)
If you had two lambs in the grand drive, who would you get to show the other one?
Jared Whitcomb or Jordan Amburgey.
Thank you Tyler and best wishes in the future!