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The Weekly News Source for Wyoming's Ranchers, Farmers and AgriBusiness Community

Wyoming shines at NILE

by Wyoming Livestock Roundup

Two exhibitors from Wyoming stole the show during the 2023 Northern International Livestock Exposition (NILE) Merit Heifer Show held in Billings, Mont. 

Wyoming winners

In a tough class of high-quality cattle, Garrett Burkett of Evansville received the “Grand Champion Slap” from Livestock Judge Dustin Frank for his Hereford heifer, which was donated by Sidwell Land and Cattle Company of Columbus, Mont. 

Fellow Wyomingite Hadley Cooper, a resident of Powell, took home Reserve Champion Merit Heifer honors with her Angus heifer donated by Montana-based Basin Angus Ranch.

Following Cooper in the final four placings were Kale Cordill of Cheney, Wash. in third place with a heifer donated by Horseshoe Angus Ranch, LLC of Connell, Wash. and Madison Flowers of Shepherd, Mont. with a heifer donated by Triple 3 Cattle of Cheyenne. 

NILE Merit Heifer Program

According to the NILE’s website, the NILE Merit Heifer Program was created to help youth get a start in the cattle business. 

Individuals in the program are selected based on their merit, future goals and ability to care for an animal, and those who are deemed suitable are awarded a heifer, which has been generously donated to the program.

“Each program participant will own their heifer jointly with NILE until the completion of the program, at which time NILE officials will sign off, and the participant will take full ownership of the heifer,” reads the website. 

“During the duration of the program, participants are responsible for raising their heifer, arranging for her to be bred, completing record-keeping procedures and bringing her back one year later as a bred replacement heifer for exhibit at the NILE Stock Show,” the website continues. 

The program is completed after the heifer is determined to be bred, all record keeping has been completed and the heifer makes a showing at the NILE Merit Heifer Show in Billings, Mont.  

Keep an eye out for more NILE results in future editions of the Wyoming Livestock Roundup.

Hannah Bugas is the managing editor of the Wyoming Livestock Roundup. Send comments on this article to

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