Judge Sisters Split Judging Responsibilities
October 26, 2018
From showing cattle in California and judging livestock on the collegiate level, to giving champion handshakes at the American Royal, Ashley and Jessie Judge are making their mark on the livestock industry.
The sisters started from humble beginnings showing cattle in San Luis Obispo, California. After both sisters judged collegiately at junior colleges, they each ended up at Oklahoma State University for senior college. Both sisters were part of national champion teams, Ashley in 2014 and Jessie in 2017. In addition, the Judge sisters were both named High Individual at the North American International Livestock Exposition during their respective years, which no siblings have previously accomplished.
Through their big successes in college, they never thought an opportunity like the one presented at the 2018 American Royal would arise, and especially not so soon.
This year, the sisters were given the opportunity to sort through and judge the 2018 American Royal Limousin Show, Jessie for the junior show and Ashley for the open show.
Both Judges got emotional when discussing the gravity of this opportunity in front of exhibitors and families sitting ringside before the grand champion female selections.
“To me, there is no other way to describe it than grateful. The fact that someone believed in two young girls and gave them the opportunity to do this is what is special about it to me, and getting to do it with Ashley is very sentimental and special for us,” Jessie said.
They hope that this opportunity isn’t the last one, for themselves or other young women in the livestock industry.
Ashley said, “For us growing up, there were no female livestock judges, no girls judging. I hope that the opportunities that we have been blessed with open up the doorway and a path for younger women to get to continue judging shows, and that to me is very important.”