Meet the Evans
“We’re taking care of the resources God’s given us and trying to be a steward to the land just like we are called to do,” said Bradfield Evans of CK Cattle Co. in Hope Hull, Ala. “We want to be able to return the land to the next generation better than it was when we started, and we want them to continue that legacy.”
As part of a third-generation operation, Bradfield and Kathleen Evans take pride in making their living alongside their family. They credit the success of the family operation to the unique skills each person brings to the business, a shared love of the industry and, most importantly, a strong family dynamic.
“We have been blessed with the opportunity to take care of this land and the cattle,” Kathleen explained. “Even though it’s hard work, I’m thankful to have the opportunity to do it and work with my family.”
While Kathleen grew up on the ranch that her grandfather started in 1978, Bradfield grew up in suburban Atlanta and did not join the operation until after graduating college and marrying Kathleen. Even though Bradfield didn’t grow up in the beef industry, he spent much of his life wanting to be a part of it.
“This is my calling, I would work hard at anything, but there’s nothing that I would work harder at than this – ranching and taking care of cattle. I wake up and I’m just ready to go every day. I love it, just absolutely love it,” he said.
At first, Bradfield and Kathleen only worked on the ranch part time, but in 2015, the couple took the plunge into full-time cattle ranching.
Throughout their time on the ranch, the business has grown exponentially, particularly the bull business. Eight years ago, CK marketed around 100 bulls, this year they will sell more than 260 bulls during the course of the year. The substantial growth of CK Cattle Co. has been equally as rewarding for the Evans’ as it has been challenging.
“The rapid growth that we have experienced, albeit we have been blessed, but that comes with a lot of work, particularly in infrastructure and projects to support all the growth,” Bradfield said. “We’ve grown the bull business north of 100 percent. Growing pains are tough. We’ve made it with just a lot of hard work, and it’s worked out.”
With three families on the operation, each member of the family brings a unique skill that is critical to the overall success. Whether it’s working on critical infrastructure improvements, building relationships, or helping to keep the logistics on track on a day-to-day basis – the members of CK Cattle Co. are a true testament of a family whose combined talents and work ethic have allowed them to set a strong foundation for the future generations that will come after them.
In addition, to the strong family dynamic that has made their businesses so successful, the Evans family credits NCBA for being a critical part of the increased notoriety of their ranch. Bradfield and Kathleen are proud NCBA members and are thankful for the relationships built through their involvement over the years.
“Since we have really gotten more involved in NCBA, we have watched our business grow exponentially,” Bradfield said. “NCBA is second to none.”