story by Lindsay Humphrey Last summer, Emily changed her last name from Vinton to Finney when she married Doug. It was a match made at […]
Association MemberJoin Rodeo News
Meet the Member Jill Austin
story by Terry Rhodes
Yogi Berra had it right when he said, “It’s like déjà vu all over again.” And so too, is Jill Austin back for her second tour as Mid-States Rodeo Association secretary. Starting in 2016 she will be picking up the duties that she left in 2011. “I was the secretary from 2008 until 2011. With my job and my family, I needed to simplify and my choice was to step down from the M-SRA. Even though I was no longer the M-SRA Secretary, I still stayed involved in different ways. My husband, Beau is a team roper in the Mid-States Rodeo Association and our son Colter and I go to as many with him as we can. I also stayed involved with sponsorships and getting jackets and year end awards for different events for the finals. So I stayed involved with different aspects.”
Her first time being secretary was a crash course in the duties. “The person that was secretary at that time had made the Finals for that coming September and wanted to step down so I started that August, just before Finals. Then they asked if I wanted to do it (permanently) and I jumped in with both feet. So it was a baptism by fire and there were some bumps in the road, but everybody for the most part was supportive and helped. Secretaries from other associations, Entry Line personnel and directors all helped how they could.”
But this time around Jill brings a wealth of experience and knowledge with her about the secretary position and the association can look forward to her return. She has a better sense of what needs to be done to strengthen the association and make it more successful. “Sponsorships are the top challenge for us. Every business is getting hit up by organizations wanting them to sponsor them. We need to figure out how we can help businesses and show them how sponsorship of our Association will benefit them.” Competing for sponsorship dollars will be Jill’s primary objective as she begins 2016.
Jill says that she is glad to be back in her former role and wants all to know that she is available to answer questions and help out wherever she can.“ I enjoy the members, committees and contract personnel in the association. I like the Mid-States Rodeo Association for many reasons like the region it covers, the other associations it co-approves with and the work they put in to make it the best rodeo season it can be.”
Jill and Beau make their home south of Meadow Grove, Neb. with their son, Colter, 6. Jill knows that Colter is a team roper in the making. “I handed him a rope at 18 months old and he’s been swinging it ever since!” Right now the family is busy with preparations for their second child due around Christmas. Jill is ready to enjoy her time home with the new baby and get back to the swing of things with the Mid-states.
Any leisure time is spent doing something outside. Whether it’s going to the lake, heading to the arena to practice, roping the dummy, spending time in the yard/garden or just spending time with family and friends. “We are outdoorsy people and that will be where you can find us!” Growing up in Valentine, Neb., Jill acquired a love of kayaking the Niobrara River and would recommend it as a vacation destination to anyone!