Family: Wife: Loretta
Daughters: Angela, Christa, Julie and Katherine
David W. (Dave) Hamilton was born on August 11, 1952. He was raised on the ranch, homesteaded by his great grandfather in 1898, north of Thedford. The ranch evolved from the original 640 acres through the guidance of grandfather, Lloyd, and parents, Reed and Rosa Lee, to the present 10,000 acres of deeded land. Nearly 7,000 acres of leased land completes the ranch unit that supports 1,100 cows and bred heifers today. The ranch is currently a commercial retained ownership business bridging all phases of production with a carefully managed crossbreeding program designed to fit the resources of the Sandhills.
Dave graduated from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln with a B.S. degree in Animal Science (Range Production option) in 1974. Dave was active in the Block and Bridle Club and was committee chairman of numerous events such as Little Ak-Sar-Ben, Spring Tour, Livestock and Meats Judging Contests and Ham Sales. He was a member of Alpha Zeta, a member of the Junior and Senior Livestock Judging Teams and was active in intramural sports.
After college, Dave married Loretta Doyle of Stapleton who also graduated from UNL and was active in the Block and Bridle Club having been elected Block and Bridle Queen in 1975. Upon returning to the ranch, Dave and Loretta worked to build on the solid foundation of good grassland stewardship established by Dave's father, Reed.
Dave has been active in his community as chairman of the local 4-H Council, chairman of the Extension Board, chairman of his Church Building Committee and chairman of the Thedford High School Board of Education. The Hamilton ranch has been a host to the Nebraska Range Youth Camp for 30 years where thousands of young people have been welcome to come and learn about range management. Likewise, the Hamiltons have hosted range and pasture management students from the University of Nebraska for 25 years and have contributed greatly to teaching graduate as well as undergraduate students.
Dave's leadership in the Nebraska Stock Growers Association [later to be the Nebraska Cattlemen (NC)] and the Sandhills Cattle Association (SCA) was quickly recognized. He has served four years on the SCA board, eight years on the NC board and has chaired three committees for NC. Dave's leadership also has been recognized nationally as a board member of the Cattlemen's Beef Board, and has served as chairman of the planning committee, member of the executive committee, and on the transition committee that formed the National Cattlemen's Beef Association. Dave currently serves as a member of the Nebraska Cattlemen's ANebraska Corn Fed Beef@ Task Force. In 1992, the Hamiltons were recognized by the National Cattlemen's Beef Association as winners of the Region VII Environmental Stewardship Award.
Dave has spoken at many Nebraska and national meetings on range management, retained ownership and beef production efficiency.
Dave is recognized by his peers as an excellent manager of grass and cattle, as a leader in the beef industry, as an effective teacher of youth and is respected as a true gentleman.