Kristina McKee, Tennessee
Kristina McKee is a partner in Mid-South Livestock Center in Unionville, Tenn., and has been serving the area’s beef producers since 1996. Her late father-in-law had been in the auction market business for 65 years. Because of this, Kristina has a passion for agriculture.
“I’ve had many roles over my short lifetime, but the one I’m most proud of is the 30-plus years that I’ve spent in the livestock-auction business. I’ve had the opportunity to see first-hand the responsibility that market owners take in providing a place where cattle producers can sell their products and receive a fair and competitive price for those animals. It’s a challenging business because of course, markets are cyclical, so we have good years, then we’ve had downturns. But, those checkoff dollars that we’ve collected on hundreds of thousands of animals have opened up program opportunities to increase demand for the product.
“I’m extremely proud of the checkoff. I’ve seen firsthand the work that is done from those dollars collected.
“We are dealing with the salt-of-the-Earth with farmers and people involved in agriculture; people that love the land, respect and take care of the commodity that they produce, and do it with such passion. All these people that come to the market every week become part of our family. Their business is appreciated, but their friendships are cherished.”