Cross F Cattle with over 35 years’ experience in the Brangus world, started as a Brangus cattle entity with the purchase of a single foundation female at the Camp Cooley Sale in November, 1996. This weaned heifer, who was pointed out by good friend John Smith, was Miss BB Bright Promise 336F2, who proved to be an outstanding show heifer. She became an even better cow as her second heifer calf; the “Cha-Cha” heifer became the National Show Grand Champion Heifer and NJBS Bred & Owned Grand Champion for daughter Katy and solidified the motto for the operation, “Performance that Shows”. Cross F Cattle however, really began as the owners; Joe & Melanie Fuller were married as both are multi-generation cattle folks with a love for Brangus Cattle. The Cross F tale is truly a Brangus love story as the over 30 year marriage started all because of Jerry Morrow, former Executive VP of the IBBA, brought Melanie, an LSU Animal Science graduate over to San Antonio in 1981 to be the first IBBA Director of Communications and Junior Programs and later invited Joe (who was managing sales for Fred Thompson) over to the Brangus office to meet his ‘girls’. Some folks say that Melanie has a better “eye” than Joe, but Joe is the one that quickly sorted out Melanie to his keeper pen! Joe had a dream to be a Brangus Sales Manager that developed when he worked Brangus sales during college for Matt and Ann Syler. Joe also showed cattle for Larue Douglas, a custom fitter for some of the large Brangus outfits in the 70’s and 80’s. Joe was hired as a Field Representative for IBBA in 1984 and was stationed in Denver, Colorado where he worked throughout the Midwest and Western U.S. selling Brangus cattle, representing the breed from Missouri to California and from Arizona to Montana. Melanie grew her skills while in Colorado as the Director of Communications for the National Cattleman’s Association. It was during this time that Joe came to appreciate the Angus breed as many of the great Angus operations were breeding up to Brangus at the time. These operations included Sitz, Connealy, Bradley 3 and Tehama Angus ranches, just to name a few and whose genetics still positively affect Brangus cattle today. Joe also well learned that Brangus cattle can survive and thrive in the toughest environments, no matter how high the mountain, hot the country, dry the desert or cold the winter. He was instrumental in making the National Western Brangus Bull Sale in Denver, Colorado, a real showcase for Brangus bulls in the west and there worked with the Brinks cattle manager by the name of Vern Suhn. After 5 years with the IBBA, Joe and Mark Cowan founded Cattle Brokers, a Brangus sales management firm that managed the famous Brinks Foundation Dispersal for Lloyd and Glen Brinkman in Eureka, Kansas, again working closely with Vern.
Joe & Melanie raised their kids with strong faith in Jesus Christ and a love for Brangus cattle. Many a mile was travelled to major Brangus and major stock shows across the United States and numerous buckles were won by Katy and Ben. Katy showed two major champions the previously mentioned “Cha-Cha” heifer, a KO of Brinks daughter and then she hit the jackpot when she won the 2004 International Grand Champion Female in Houston with “Kelly”, Miss 38 Center Ranch 99/M1 who is now in the 101 Ranch donor program. Ben had his own share of show success and also served as the President of the International Junior Brangus Breeders Association. Both Katy and Ben worked hard for the good of the Brangus breed and they are excited about their children someday having some Brangus show heifers (Katy and her husband David have two sons, Caleb and Malachi; and Ben and his wife Trisha have a son, Jack).
Joe joined Purina Mills in 1991, has worked in sales and sales management for over 20 years and today serves Purina Animal Nutrition as an Area Sales Manager in Texas. Mark Cowan hired his old partner, Joe as Vice President of Marketing for Camp Cooley Ranch from 2004 to early 2007. Working with Craig Green during this time at Camp Cooley saw the first 1,000 head bull held in the South and the rapid growth of the cooperator program brought many breeders into the Brangus fold including several GENETRUST partners. Two key herd sires promoted and sold by Fuller during this era were Csonka of Brinks 30R4 and Brinks Bright Side 607L11….bulls whose sons grandsons and daughters continue to make an impact today. Melanie has always been active in providing leadership in the Brangus breed and has served as President of the International Brangus Auxiliary and has managed the NJBS show and was honored as a recipient of the Georgianne Meyer Memorial award. Melanie serves as Advertising Manager for the Brangus Journal.
The Cross F Cattle Company is a small herd with a focus on attractive cattle phenotypically and genetically balanced across all traits. The key donor cow in the program owned along with Genesis Ranch and The Oaks Ranch is Miss BB Unitas 803U21, the $30,000 high selling female in the final Camp Cooley Dispersal whose first daughter by GR Swift sold at auction for $9,000.00 to 101 Ranch. The herd sire at Cross F is the stout and attractive Suhn’s Augustus 416Y14, one of the most attractive performance pedigrees to be found in the breed.
Cross F Cattle is a proud member of GENETRUST and a long term Brangus breeder excited about the future of the cattle industry and the critical role that GENETRUST will play in providing beef for the world.