Each year the Nebraska Sheep & Goat Producers selects a producer or person that is instrumental in promoting and supporting the sheep industry in Nebraska to receive the Ted and Alice Doane Outstanding Service Award.  Ted Doane was a former sheep specialist with the University of Nebraska Animal Science Department and was also very instrumental in promoting the sheep industry Nationally and in Nebraska. He was one of the founding members of the Nebraska Sheep Council in 1979 which now is the Nebraska Sheep & Goat Producers Association.  Ted was not the only member of the Doane family that was a critical part in promoting the sheep industry in Nebraska, his wife Alice spent many years as the State Director of Make It With Wool for Nebraska.  She was always ready to give an update and promote the contest.  She worked diligently to help grow the Nebraska Make It With Wool contest to what it is today. The plaque that is presented has the following statement “A person has not lived until he has done something which does not benefit himself, but rather benefits another.  This is not only Christianity in practice, it is the finest principle upon which a person can base his life”.

The Nebraska Sheep and Goat Producers Association honored to present this years Ted and Alice Doane Outstanding Service Award to Jim Mueller for his many contributions to the sheep and wool industry at the annual meeting held in Madison, NE.  Jim Mueller has spent is life dedicated to youth and the Nebraska sheep industry.  Jim spent 40 years as a 4-H assistant educator in Platte County Nebraska where he inspired youth to be more than they thought they could be.  His fun and witty manner captured youth of all ages.  His unique ability to ask questions and get them to think about agriculture set him apart from so many of his colleagues.  Jim started Life on the Farm which engaged elementary youth in the aspects of agriculture.  He played an integral role in the Nebraska State Fairs Largest Classroom where he sheared sheep and taught about the sheep industry to hundreds of youths annually.

Jim volunteered his time for years at the AKSARBEN Youth Livestock exposition where he served in a variety of roles where those in need asked for his help as he had the ability to solve problems and bring people together. He served on the equine, beef, sheep, and poultry committees. Jim volunteered his time as the Sheep Superintendent at the Nebraska State Fair for several years.  His ability to encourage and help exhibitors led to the show growing and being very respectable. Jim’s ability to work with exhibitors and keep shows running smoothly kept show managers asking him to help year after year. For many years he took on the responsibility to organize the aisle of breeds which showcased the many different sheep breeds.  He was often found purchasing these to fill out the display.

Jim has been a long time Dorset sheep breeder.  His sheep are sought after by commercial and purebred breeders.  He has exhibited champions at the Nebraska State Fair but more importantly has sold countless rams to satisfied customers. Jim is always willing to help and provide advice and guidance when needed. Open photo

Jim’s dedication to the sheep industry and youth makes him a deserving recipient for the Ted and Alice Doane Outstanding Service Award.