Every year, people gather from all over the state to attend the Ohio State Fair. Many competitions take place, and one local student was able to walk away as the Champion Intermediate Showman.
Jacob LeBrun is a hardworking 14 year old who has a passion for cattle. From a young age, he has been interested in farm animals. He takes initiative and responsibility with the animals he gets for 4H, and anyone watching him can see his drive and concentration.
At the State Fair, the competitions can be more intense at times, but LeBrun managed to do well in more than one category.
“I was Champion Intermediate Showman,” LeBrun said. “On the open show day, I was first in my class and on junior show day, I was second in my class.”
LeBrun has always loved working with cattle, and enjoys being a part of 4H.
“I’ve done 4H for five years,” LeBrun said. “I’ve raised cattle my whole life, and started showing five years ago. I have always had a passion for cattle. There’s always been a sort of bond between us.”
This self-motivated teen wants to do his best. One way he does this is by being involved in many different organizations. He is a part of the American Angus Association, and is currently an officer of the Ohio Junior Angus Association. He is the president of his Future Farmers of America (FFA) chapter, and is the secretary of his youth group at Rubyville Community Church.
“These leadership positions teach me how to be a better person,” LeBrun said. “They teach me skills that I need whenever I do these kind of things, and helps me be confident in what I do.”
Most teenagers hate the thought of waking up early, but LeBrun is no stranger to the task.
“Usually I wake up at 6:30 in the morning and it takes about three hours of working with them,” LeBrun said. “Then in the evening I rinse them and feed them. It ends up being about five hours a day.”
LeBrun is leading the way by example, showing others what it takes to be an excellent showman. He gives advice to others on how to do well with their cattle.
“To be a showman it really takes hard work and dedication,” LeBrun said. “You can’t just show up a week before and think you can show an animal. Normally it takes a year of working with the animal. About a month after the county fair, I’m buying my steer and already working with it. It’s a process.
Then, I would say to find someone who competes competitively on the national level and watch them. Go to clinics, see what these older competitors are doing, and do that too. I’ve watched older kids and I’ve also been blessed to see national and state shows, so I work hard and try and do what they do so I can compete on those levels as well.”
Along his journey working with these animals, LeBrun has had many people to look up to, so he tries to help others as well. One person he admired was his late Papaw. His Papaw’s positive attitude and work ethic is something LeBrun has wanted to carry on. This has been something that has been a driving force in LeBrun’s motivation, and he knows his Papaw would be proud of what he is accomplishing now.
Although he has plenty of time to figure out what the future holds, LeBrun currently thinks he is interested in studying cattle, their blood lines, and genetics at whichever university he attends.