Scholarship Stories of the Valley KADY LOOK

Sitting in a silent room surrounded by others, Kady waits for her name to be called by the officials. The room is still but her mind is racing with thoughts as she prepares her oral presentation. Her name is finally announced and she enters a room with officials who listen to her answers on how she ranked and judged the presented animals. She can’t look at notes and must do this off the memory of how she recalls that the animals had moved and had looked. She will need to defend her choice with confidence.

This is livestock judging. Teams of four students judge a series of classes (usually of four animals each) and rank them based on criteria to choose the most superior animal (e.g. muscling, conformation). Part of the contest is to give a short persuasive speech in which the contestant explains their evaluation of the animals to an official for a score. In order to compete in livestock judging, a vast understanding of the muscular structure of the animals is required in addition to possessing strong communication skills. Kady explained, “I get really nervous while waiting to be called, but when I enter the room I am relaxed. Livestock judging has provided me a lot of confidence."

Friend Hallie Myhre (left) and Kady Look (right) roping at the Routt County Fair.

Kady has not always been so involved with the 4-H program. Kady is very athletic, she naturally shined on the basketball and volleyball team while attending the Steamboat Springs High School. Unfortunately, she tore her ACL in her sophomore year. Kady is not one to sit idle. While sidelined athletically due to her injury, she joined the 4-H program. During this time, she rehabilitated her injury and started to play athletics again, only to tear her ACL for a second time. This second injury is when she shifted her focus to livestock judging. She would spend her time after school practicing via video at the Routt County Extension Office to prepare for her moments in front of the officials.

It is quickly realized in speaking with Kady that livestock judging is the passion that drives her. Growing up in North Routt on a fourth generation ranch owned by her grandfather, Kady would start her days feeding her steers and dogs. Her family business runs deep in agriculture with selling cows/calves. By participating in livestock judging, Kady was able to help with the family business. Now, as she temporarily leaves North Routt for Casper College, she has joined the livestock judging team at school. She decided upon Casper College for its livestock judging program and the coaching staff.

Kady showing her first steer at the 2016 Routt County Fair in the showmanship class.

Like many students, the price tag of college can seem unfathomable. Keeping loans to a minimum was a priority to practical Kady. Choosing Casper College with an annual tuition including room & board of $13,000 was an easy choice. With her final scholarship for livestock judging, she enters her first year of college with tuition covered in full. This includes the following scholarships from the Yampa Valley Community Foundation: Steamboat Kiwanis Scholarship Fund, Routt County CattleWomen Scholarship, and the Monica Olson Veterinarian Scholarship.

Kady told the Yampa Valley Community Foundation that her parents are unable to assist financially with school. She comes from a large family with two sisters, one half-brother, one step-sister, and one step- brother. Kady stated, “The only way to step up is through education." Understanding a need for advanced education pushed Kady to work hard to ensure she could attend school and receive an education.

Kady riding her horse, Elmer. This was taken in the back property of her family's ranch, next to the Elk River.

This summer, Kady worked at a local dude ranch guiding visitors on horseback rides. She tells me that the previous summer, she worked for her father excavating rock and dirt. Her eyes light up. She loved this job. She states her next goal is to get her CDL certification so she can drive a dump truck. Her least favorite job, retail. Kady needs hands-on work.

She plans to finish her associate’s degree in Agriculture Business and then head to Dental School to become a dental hygienist. She likes the idea of the flexibility dental hygienists can enjoy in their careers and the hands on work she would be doing day to day. She will always have deep roots and a passion for agriculture. Even with her dislike of snow, Kady plans to return to North Routt.

At senior and junior homecoming taken at Catamount Lake. (top from left to right) Peyton Belton, Liam Hahn, Ethan Labriola, Tell Belton, Hayden Johnson, Tucker Limberg, and Jarrod Raper. (bottom left to right) Hallie Myhre, Kally May, Kady Look, and Dakota Thvedt.
Created By
Helen Beall


Photos Provided by Kady Look

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