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Rising Star J Storme Jannise: “I’d like to inspire a movement to get people more educated about where their food comes from”

If I could inspire a movement it would be to get people more involved and educated on agriculture and where their food comes from. So many people have no idea about this way of life, and they are easily influenced by all the negative things they see on social media about agriculture, specifically beef production. […]


If I could inspire a movement it would be to get people more involved and educated on agriculture and where their food comes from. So many people have no idea about this way of life, and they are easily influenced by all the negative things they see on social media about agriculture, specifically beef production. I would like the opportunity to better educate people on this lifestyle and beef production, so they could see what it is really like. Then they could form their own opinions, instead of believing what they see on social media. I’d love to be able to bring people to farms and ranches to see how much time, effort and heart is put into everything we do. We do it not only to make a living but also to feed the people of the world. Years ago nearly everyone grew up on a farm or ranch, and they somewhat had an understanding of what went on. I would like to take people back to their roots, and let people learn to be more involved with the production of their food.


I had the pleasure to interview Ultimate Cowboy Showdown contestant J Storme Jannise. J Storme is a fourth-generation Texas cowboy, and she’s ready to show the nation that women can do anything men can do. She grew up on her family’s cattle ranch and is determined to keep the tradition going by following in her grandfather’s footsteps. J Storme studied agriculture in college and competes in ranch rodeos with much success. She now helps in the daily management of her family’s ranch and the rebuilding of their operation after surviving devastating losses from hurricane Harvey and tropical storm Imelda. Small, but mighty, her grandma showed her how to stay tough in a male-dominated industry.


Thank you so much for doing this with us! Can you tell us the story of how you grew up?

I grew up on my family’s ranch in Hamshire, Texas, and a large part of my mom’s side of the family all still lives on the ranch. Growing up, my brother and I spent most of our weekends and summers working with my grandpa tending cattle. Even our summer vacations were always centered on cattle, either attending the state cattlemen’s convention or checking on our own calves at the growing yard. Before my great-grandmother passed away at the age of 98, she would always have a home cooked meal ready for all the cowboys at lunch. We’d all go to her house and sit around the dining room table together. She always made sure we were well taken care of, and we have so many memories with her.

When I was in high school I got involved in sports and FFA, and I was very busy juggling everything along with ranch life. Even with so much going on, my mom and grandparents never missed any of my events. Every Sunday after church, no matter how busy we were, my family always enjoyed a home cooked meal by my grandmother. I was extremely blessed to grow up with a family that was so caring and supportive.

Can you share a story with us about what brought you to this specific career path?

My grandpa had to babysit me for a short time when I was a baby, so not really knowing what to do, he just loaded me up in the truck and rode me around the ranch. He says he put me on his arm and just let me sit looking out the window, and from that day forward, I’ve never quit looking at cows. Since then, my grandpa and I have spent many hours looking at cows. We used to always take a Sunday evening ride around the ranch and check all the cattle and pastures. Watching my grandpa work so hard for everything he has and the pride he has for his work has always inspired me to do the same. Ranching is never an easy or predictable way of life. However, I know that the pride and satisfaction that comes from ranching are worth the difficult times.

Can you tell us the most interesting story that happened to you since you began your career?

There are so many interesting things that happen every day with this career, so it’s hard to pick just one! Dealing with the weather, specifically hurricanes and tropical storms, would probably prove some of the most interesting stories, but I’ll talk about one a little more fun and positive.

I’ve always worked with all guys, until one of the guys I work with started dating a girl that wanted to be more involved with working cattle, and he started bringing her along to work. She and I became quick friends, and it was certainly nice not being the only girl around. After working together for a while, we decided we wanted to start doing ranch rodeos. However, the women’s ranch rodeos are few and far between in our area. Our local county show was coming up with the big annual open ranch rodeo, and we got the idea to enter with two of the guys we worked with. We were a nervous wreck leading up to the rodeo, and we practiced at work every chance we got. This particular ranch rodeo had several events in the morning. In the evening, they took the top 10 teams to compete in two events for the finals. Our goal was to make it to the top 10. We wanted everyone to know that we might look like a couple of small girls, but we could still hold our own against all the guys. We were so nervous the day of the rodeo, that we could hardly eat or anything. Because the rodeo was in our hometown, the stands were full with people we knew, and we just wanted to make sure we did well. To add even more attention to me, it also happened to be my birthday, which the announcer pointed out multiple times. As if being one of only two girls entered in the whole rodeo wasn’t enough! We did decent in the first event, and it knocked the jitters off a little bit. Sorting was the next event, and we won the fast time for that. We were extremely excited and proud to hear our name called as one of the top 10 teams, and we were content with reaching our goal, but we wanted to see how far we could make it. Wild cow milking was one of the final events. We knew it was going to be a tough event, especially since we were smaller girls, but we had already survived the double mugging, so we knew we could do this too. We ended up finishing third place out of the thirty teams entered in the rodeo. We were on cloud nine!

Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?

I’ve made so many funny mistakes at work, that I don’t even know if I can think of one right now! I used to carry around my mistakes for weeks being so mad at myself, but I realized that everyone makes mistakes, and I learned to laugh about them. Now, I hardly remember them from day to day. I did have a couple funny mistakes during one ranch rodeo, that still make me laugh to this day. The year after my team competed in the open ranch rodeo, the rodeo decided to add a women’s ranch rodeo. After doing so well in the men’s rodeo, we felt like the pressure was on for us to perform well at this one. I don’t know if it was my nerves that got the best of me or what, but I could not stay on my feet to save my life! During one of the events I was running as fast as I could to a roped steer. Before I knew it, I was clotheslined by the rope and landed flat on the ground. During the next event I was getting off my horse, and I fell face down. After that, I realized it wasn’t my night, and I was going to have to just keep laughing and go with it. The last event was mugging, and we had a rough steer that jerked me back into the dirt, where it seemed I had been all night! We managed to still pull off the win for that rodeo, but I still laugh looking back at it.

What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now?

The most interesting project I’m working on right now is trying to get everything put back together and taken care of after tropical storm Imelda. We received 43” of rain in 24 hours that resulted in catastrophic flooding for the area. It was something that you truly have to see to believe. Today, which is almost two weeks later, we still have pastures that are covered in water and cattle that we cannot easily get to. We had no warning on how terrible the weather was going to be. Next thing you know, we all woke up to a flood. Thousands of homes in our area were flooded. Most of those homes were homes that people just got back into following Harvey, which took place two years ago. Harvey brought 54”of rain in 48 hours. We were told that Harvey was a “thousand year flood,” and that we’d never see it again. Having to deal with something so bad only two years later was nearly unbelievable for everyone in this area. There had never been a flood in this area anywhere near this level on record, and now we’ve faced two of them only two years apart. Thankfully, our cattle seem better this time than they did during Harvey, but it’s been pretty busy. It will continue to be busy for months to come, trying to combat all the effects of this natural disaster. We spent days taking hay by boat and helicopter to stranded cattle to keep them alive until the water could drop enough for them to find pasture to graze. We tried moving any cattle we could to any high ground we could find, which included putting them on the highway that runs through a lot of our property. We cut fences and opened every gate we could so they could scatter to find high ground. We have cows mixed with all our neighbors’ cows and some that are still missing. Due to the added stress of this event, we’ll never know just how many calves we lost or how many cows will abort their calves. It’s hard to believe just how long of an effect something like this can have on your cow herd, especially after we were just recovering from the last event. I find hope and faith knowing we have persevered and made it through before, and that we can do it again.

We are very interested in diversity in the entertainment industry. Can you share three reasons with our readers about why you think it’s important to have diversity represented in film and television? How can that potentially affect our culture?

I think it’s so important to have diversity in television. It’s important for others to see that even if they have a dream and aren’t considered the average person for the job, they can still do it. That’s one of the main reasons I did Ultimate Cowboy Showdown, because when most people think of cowboys they think of bigger, stronger men. I wanted to show that women can do it too, even smaller women like me.

I want all the young girls watching that have been too nervous to follow their dream of working as a cowboy to realize that if I can do it, then they can do it too! I won’t promise it will be easy to get into or be a part of, but if you have the passion for it, I promise it will all be worth it. You’ll surprise yourself with just how much you can do and how far you can go. Trust me because I’ve been there!

Which tips would you recommend to your colleagues in your industry to help them to thrive and not “burn out”?

I think it’s easy to get “burned out” mentally in this industry because it is a lot of work with little monetary reward. It’s not an 8–5 job that comes with paid vacation or benefits; it’s an unpredictable job. You may have to be at work ’til midnight trying to deliver a calf or up before the sun comes up trying to move cattle before it gets too hot. You have to plan your days around weather, which in itself is extremely unpredictable, so even when you make plans they may not work out how you planned. It’s so hard to step away from this job and life. There is constantly something needing to be done, and these are live animals that we are caring for that require attention and have lots of needs we need to meet for them to be able to perform their best. It’s hard to take a vacation without feeling like you need to be at the ranch doing something. I’ve learned over the past few years just how important it is to make sure to take a few days off every once in a while to do things outside of work. It’s amazing how refreshed you feel when you actually let yourself enjoy a day off and relax. Of course, it’s easier said than done, and it took me a while to figure out how to let myself do that, but in the end it’s worth it. We can’t take care of our animals to the best of our ability if we don’t take care of ourselves first.

You are a person of enormous influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂

If I could inspire a movement it would be to get people more involved and educated on agriculture and where their food comes from. So many people have no idea about this way of life, and they are easily influenced by all the negative things they see on social media about agriculture, specifically beef production. I would like the opportunity to better educate people on this lifestyle and beef production, so they could see what it is really like. Then they could form their own opinions, instead of believing what they see on social media. I’d love to be able to bring people to farms and ranches to see how much time, effort and heart is put into everything we do. We do it not only to make a living but also to feed the people of the world. Years ago nearly everyone grew up on a farm or ranch, and they somewhat had an understanding of what went on. I would like to take people back to their roots, and let people learn to be more involved with the production of their food.

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?

There are so many people who have inspired and helped me get to where I am today, but my biggest inspiration would be my grandfather, Harold Clubb. If it wasn’t for him, I know I wouldn’t be where I am today. At 87 years old, he still works and rides every single day. He never takes a sick day, and he rarely takes a vacation that doesn’t involve cattle. He’s been through a lot of hard times, from dropping market prices, changing law and regulations and natural disasters. No matter how hard, he’s never once given up, and he has always continued to do whatever he can to keep things going.

Not only does he work constantly on the ranch, but he is also very active in our cattle organizations. He has made many trips to our national and state’s capitol to lobby for laws and regulations to benefit our industry. He’s also taught politicians about the issues we face and what they can do to help us. Along with being such a hard worker and good businessman, he is a wonderful family man. I don’t think he ever missed a single one of my sporting events, cattle shows or the couple of pageants I entered, or any other event I’ve participated in. He’s always front row to cheer me on, and he always looks so proud of me.

He and my grandmother are also very active in our church. They hardly ever miss a Sunday service, and they always have a home cooked family lunch at their house afterwards. They’ve been married 62 years, and they are truly an inspiration, with their strong values and hard work. I’m extremely blessed to have grown up with such good role models in my life, and I hope to be half the person that my grandpa is.

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?

“When you get to the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on.” This is one quote I’ve always lived by. Because there are so many factors that we have no control of in this industry, it’s easy to get frustrated and sometimes want to give up. I’ve learned that even if I don’t have enough strength left, I have to keep moving up the rope, and that I can at least tie a knot in the rope and hang on. Giving up has never been an option for me, and this quote reminds me of that every single day.

Is there a person in the world, or in the US whom you would love to have a private breakfast or lunch with, and why? He or she might just see this, especially if we tag them. 🙂

There are so many interesting people in the world that I’d love to have a chat with. If I had to pick one right now, I think it would be Ellen DeGeneres. Recently she put a negative light on agriculture and beef production, and she encouraged all of her fans to eat less meat. Because Ellen has such a huge, loyal following, I’m sure that the message has reached millions of people and had a large impact. She stated that eating meat was not only healthier for people, but that it was better for the environment and for the animals. I’d love to be able to sit down with her and talk to her more about this industry. I’d love to be able to educate her on some of the facts and underlying benefits of animal production and allow her to see how beneficial animal agriculture is to everyone. It’s so important for us as producers to educate everyone we meet in a positive way, especially those like Ellen who have such a large influence in our society. It’s important they know the facts and from there, can form their own opinions.

How can our readers follow you on social media?

You can find me on Facebook: J Storme Jannise and Instagram: @j.storme

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