Recognizing Curtis Martinby Representative Greg Walden
Posted on 2013-12-11
in the house of representatives
Wednesday, December 11, 2013
Mr. WALDEN. Mr. Speaker, I rise today to recognize my good friend
Curtis Martin for his life-long efforts to support agriculture and
ranching, which are so important to jobs and the economy in rural
Oregon. Over the past two years, Curtis has done a tremendous job
serving as the president of the Oregon Cattlemen's Association. As his
term as president comes to an end, I'd like to take a moment to pay
tribute to his leadership.
Before and during his service as president of the Oregon Cattlemen's Association, Curtis served in several capacities locally to the benefit of farmers and ranchers. He has been a member of the Powder Basin Watershed Committee, a Director on the Union Soil and Water Conservation District and President of the Powder Valley Water Control District.
During his tenure as Oregon Cattlemen's Association President, Curtis has worked tirelessly to represent Oregon's livestock industry across the state. During the summer of 2012, wildfires devastated over one million acres of rangeland and forest across Oregon, affecting many ranchers' livelihoods along the way. Curtis took the lead in coordinating a relief effort, helping raise over $200,000 in donations for ranchers who had lost cattle and pasture due to the fires. In a further response to the fires, Curtis established the Restore Everything Strategically Through Organized Response (RESTOR) Task Force, bringing together federal agencies, the State of Oregon, local governments and the Oregon congressional delegation to channel resources and assistance to affected livestock communities. RESTOR also put forth proactive solutions to reduce the frequency and intensity of wildfires, and improve government and community responses when fires occur. Federal agencies continue to work towards implementing several of the task force's recommendations.
Curtis also led the Oregon Cattlemen's Association Oregon Habitat Monitoring Initiative, pulling together a diverse group of stakeholders from federal and state agencies, Oregon State University, private consultants and other industry groups to develop a cooperative monitoring standard for producers on the ground. This effort resulted in the current development of the Oregon Rangeland Monitoring Guide, so that livestock producers can easily monitor their pastures and supplement federal agency data supporting public land grazing allotments.
Curtis was raised on a ranch in Vale, Oregon, on the far eastern edge of the state. After high school, he moved full time into the family's ranch operation, building fence, piping water and moving cattle on horseback. By 1978, Curtis had married his wife Cheryl and moved to North Powder, where Cheryl's family has roots back to the Oregon Trail pioneers who first settled the Baker Valley in the 1860s.
In 1983, Curtis and Cheryl bought a ranch in North Powder, where they now center their ranching operation. Curtis has said that upon buying the property, it was so run down it was only suitable for producing ``weeds and ground squirrels.'' Together, they turned their efforts to rehabilitating the property to a state fit for raising cattle and have been successful in their efforts. Curtis and Cheryl treasure their four sons and six grandchildren. They take great pride in their family ranch operation and in seeing yet another generation involved in the ranch and learning the lifestyle that means so much to them.
I'd like to offer a special thank you to Curtis and Cheryl for their friendship and guidance over the years.
Mr. Speaker, I ask my colleagues to join me in recognizing Curtis Martin for his tireless dedication to agriculture and ranching in Oregon as president of the Oregon Cattlemen's Association.