In the showring there are several things to capture the crowd's attention - well-groomed cattle, the judge's pace, green jackets and Angus royalty.
But, there is one that stands out from the rest, literally. The 2013 Miss American Angus, with her sparkling crown and poised stance, measures up to 6'3"; taller than many showmen.
Although height is not all that sets her apart, it's also her indisputable enthusiasm for the Angus industry and laid back, but confident attitude.
Esther McCabe, Elk City, KS, was crowned as the 2013 Miss American Angus Monday, Nov. 12, during the North American International Livestock Exposition (NAILE) in Louisville, KY. She succeeds 2012 Miss American Angus Brooke Harward, Richfield, NC.
A sophomore at Butler Community College, McCabe is pursuing a career in pharmacy. She will transfer to Kansas State University next fall to complete her degree in food science and minor in animal sciences and industry.
"While filling out the Miss American Angus application form, I realized that the person I am today is because of the opportunities the American Angus Association® and National Junior Angus Association has given me," McCabe says. "Serving as Miss American Angus is a way to give back and make a difference, especially in the lives of younger women in the breed so they too can become more involved."
Hosted by the American Angus Auxiliary, the annual Miss American Angus contest provides one Angus junior an opportunity to serve as a breed ambassador and assist with shows, educational events, and field days to educate others about the beef industry, and benefits of Angus genetics.
Five young women vying for the crown completed a written test, delivered a prepared speech, completed an interview and answered impromptu questions from a panel of judges. Competing this year were Esther McCabe, Elk City, KS; Kendra Merriman, Lowell, MI; Kayla Widerman, Good Hope, IL; Tylee Williams, Clarendon, TX, and Emily Velisek, Gaithersburg, MD.
McCabe was crowned prior to the announcement of grand champion bull during the Super-Point Roll of Victory (ROV) Angus Bull Show at the Kentucky Fair and Exposition Center (KFEC).
McCabe is the daughter of Randel and Varee McCabe, and is the youngest of four children, Flinton, Ethan and Hannah, who are all involved in the day-to-day operations of McCabe Genetics.
"Each one of us has our strengths and weaknesses while working on the farm," McCabe says. "It makes us all work together in order to get everything done."
During her year of service, McCabe hopes to become acquainted with more people involved in the Angus breed and to broaden her industry knowledge: "I hope to represent the breed in a way that people from other breeds and consumers are intrigued and want to learn more," McCabe says.
The Miss American Angus contest was officiated by Susan Rhode, Gower, MO; Bud Smith, Russell Springs, KY; and Heather Shultz, Jefferson, GA.
for complete coverage of Angus events and shows during the 2012 NAILE.