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Bill Conway. Courtesy Photo

Bill Conway recognized as Rancher of the Year-Update

*This post has been updated with information supplied by the Gila County Cattle Growers Association

The 2nd Annual GCCGA Holiday Salute to Ranching Dinner-Dance and Auction was held Saturday, November 19, 2016, at the Gila County Fairgrounds.  Following a mouth-watering steak dinner, the Globe-Miami Regional Chamber of Commerce presented the Rancher and Wrangler of the Year awards.

Rancher of the Year, Bill Conway, could not have been a better choice.  When he became President of GCCGA in 2014, Bill’s goals were to keep our association as a strong, family-friendly working association.  And he did.  With his hands on the reins, the Gila County Cattle Growers Association has had 2 wonderful years of growth both economical and socially.  He transformed the Annual Salute to the Rancher dinner into a fund raiser and social event for the organization and reinstitute our annual live auction with 2 successful cattle sales during his term.

Bill has been in ranching all his life, growing up and living on the Greenback Valley Ranch, which was homesteaded by his great-great-grandfather in 1872.  As an active member in the Gila County Cattle Growers for many years, he has worked diligently toward creating a better relationship between the Forest Service and the ranchers. 

Following in the footsteps of his grandfather, father, and brother, Bill has the cowboy no-quit spirit to keep ranching in his family for generations to come.  His grand babies are the 7th generation on the Greenback Valley Ranch and his hope is that when he is gone, Greenback Valley Ranch will still be going strong and one of the next generation will become President of the Gila County Cattle Growers.  Thank you Bill, for your many years of service and support

Wrangler of the Year was awarded to Duane Reece.  Duane has served the ranching industry in many capacities over the years.  During his many years as Gila County cattle inspector, he roped and gathered countless wild cattle to helping ranchers.  He knows cattle!  He could look at a cow and figure out who it belonged to. He is a great cowboy who has done just about anything that could be done with a cow on horseback. He is always ready to help.

An accomplished Cowboy Poet, and one of the best Story Tellers there is, Duane’s book, Cowboy Sign, is a collection of short stories that span over 70 years of cowboyin’ and 20 years of rodeoin’.

Duane has always been an active and supportive member of the Gila County Cattle Growers and is an Honorary Director of our organization.  Thank you Duane, for your years of dedication to the cattle industry and the GCCGA.

Rounding out the evening, guests danced to the music of the Ron Gibson Band, and bid on a variety of live and silent auction holiday gift items ranging from a 10-day vacation to Acapulco or Cabo San Lucas to stocking stuffers of jewelry sets and gift certificates from several local retailers.

The GCCGA thanks our sponsor, CKP Insurance, and everyone who donated items for our live and silent auctions:  Quarter Circle U Ranch, Mid-State Plumbing & Supply, Janna and John Cline, Shirley’s Gifts, DalMolin Family Ranches, Pinal Lumber, Rose Tree Cattle Company, Globe Stock Yards, Young FFA, Action Pawn, Ace Hardware, Woody Cline, Conway Feed, Mule Deer Foundation, Earth Mover Tires, Nadine’s Attic, Pickle Barrel Trading Post, Ortega Shoes, Big O Tires, United Jewelry & Sporting Goods, Guayo’s on the Trail, McSpadden Ford, Leonard Paul’s Pizza, John and Christine Augustine, Pet Club of Payson, Van Wilson, Holiday Inn Express, 60 Motors, Darrel’s Fresh Farm Pintos, Judy’s Cook House, Irene’s Real Mexican Food, Kathy Johnson, Tractor Supply of Globe and Payson, Hollis Cinemas, John’s Furniture & Flooring Company, Therese Hicks, Outlaw Industries/Universal Cattleguards, Arizona Farm Bureau pf Globe and Miami, Nathan Ellison, Flying H Ranch, Gila County Cowbelles, Bar X Ranch, Bob’s Western Wear, Copper Bistro, Antler’s Restaurant, Duane Reece, Ty Barton Saddlery, and Heart J Cowgirl.

The GCCGA Officers and Board of Directors also thank the GMR Chamber of Commerce and our many member-volunteers whose hard work and time made this year’s event a success.

Gila County Cattle Growers Association

Serving Our Ranchers Since 1934


Duane Reece accepting Wrangler of the year.
Duane Reece accepting Wrangler of the year. Courtesy Photo.


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