Scottsbluff cattleman receives award for commitment to beef industry

by Chabella Guzman

Ivan and Doris Rush
Ivan and Doris Rush pictured at the 2023 Nebraska Cattlemen Annual Convention and Trade Show receiving the award “Friend of the Nebraska Cattlemen Foundation.” Courtesy Photo
December 11, 2023

Lincoln, Neb. —The 2023 Nebraska Cattlemen Annual Convention and Trade Show honored Scottsbluff cattleman Ivan Rush with the “Friend of the Nebraska Cattlemen Foundation Award” on Dec. 7. 

For a man who prides himself on knowing what’s going on around him, “I was absolutely surprised. When they were ready to give the next award, I thought they had the wrong slide (on the screen). I was actually quite surprised,” said Rush. 

Rush has been in agriculture all his life, having grown up on a small grain, beef, and dairy operation in Missouri. He was the Beef Extension Specialist at the UNL Panhandle Research Extension and Education Center and has presented at countless cattlemen’s events ranging from local, area and regional to national and international in their scope.

He was one of the original organizers of the Range Beef Cow Symposium (RBCS), a respected production-level beef cow/calf educational meeting. The first one was held in Chadron in 1969. Rush was on the committee to organize the Symposium, served on the planning committees, and continues to contribute through his retirement years. 

He retired from the UNL Panhandle Research Extension and Education Center in 2008 and remained active in the beef industry. Rush became part of the Nebraska Cattlemen.

“I was enthused to be part of the Nebraska Cattlemen, supporting youth scholarships and judging,” he said. “It wasn’t easy to start the scholarships, but with support from the cattle producers and the industry, we are successfully seeing youth get scholarships.” 

The Nebraska Cattlemen’s work aligns with Rush’s to see beef kept in a positive light. “We know people love beef. We continue to get education out there and make it profitable for the cow-calf producers.” He added how they also fund projects like, the “Ag Sack Lunch Program of Nebraska,” “Nebraska Youth Beef Leadership Symposium (NYBLS),” and Nebraska Agriculture in the Classroom.

Rush has served as the chair of the Cattlemen’s Ball of Nebraska committee and is thrilled the Ball will be in the Panhandle in June 2024. The Ball’s goal is to raise funds for cancer research, something Rush said his family has a personal stake in. 

“Doris (wife) is recovering from cancer. We were fortunate to get her to the Buffett Center (Nebraska Medicine Fred and Pamela Buffett Cancer Center). I’m so thankful she’s healthy and living an active life again.” Millions of dollars have been donated to the UNL Medical Center through the Cattlemen’s Ball.

“I’m very honored to receive the award. My career has been wonderful and enjoyable. I’ve learned a lot from the cattlemen and women I’ve met and will continue to do what I can to help the cattle industry.”

Share to:

News Release Contact


Beef cattle | beef | Nebraska Extension