Meet the Wagonhammer Crew

We have a great group of people dedicated to raising TOTAL PERFORMANCE Cattle.  Their combination of experience and talent is why we say TOTAL PERFORMANCE is not a slogan at Wagonhammer, it’s a PROGRAM.

Jay Wolf

Jay Wolf is a 3rd generation cattleman from Albion, NE.  Jay and his family own Wagonhammer Cattle Co. which celebrated its 100th year in 2010.  Jay is a University of Nebraska Lincoln graduate.  After spending four years as a banker in Denver, he returned home in 1984 to manage the family business.  Jay is a Past President of the Nebraska Cattlemen, has served on the board of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association and the Cattlemen’s Beef Board.  In 2016 Jay was inducted into the Nebraska Cattlemen Hall of Fame.  He is a member of Ag Builders of Nebraska and the Nebraska Hall of Agricultural Achievement.  Jay is active in supporting the University of Nebraska and was the 2008 Block and Bridle Club Honoree. He is also active in local community organizations.  Jay and his wife, Susie, have been married for over 39 years and have 3 children.  Mitchell is an occupational therapist in San Francisco.  Alex joined Wagonhammer in 2022  and is working into management.   He is engaged to Ellie Clinch and they are planning a 2023 wedding.  Hilary is veterinarian in a small animal clinic.  Hilary and her husband Ryan have two daughters, Willa and Madeline.

Alex Wolf

Alex joined Wagonhammer full-time in 2022. He graduated from the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources at the University of Nebraska in 2010 and then spent 3 years working for Scoular as a grain merchandiser. In 2013 Alex was accepted into Harvard Business School where he earned a Masters in Business Administration. From 2017 to 2022, he led Scoular’s organic grain business. Alex is working to assume management of Wagonhammer, assuring our continued commitment to our customers, employees, and community. Alex is engaged to Ellie Clinch and they are planning a 2023 wedding.

Joe Epperly

Joe is Director of Genetics and Sales for our Angus and Charolais programs.  He grew up on a diversified livestock operation in central Virginia comprised mainly of registered Angus seedstock along with commercial cattle, quarter horses, sheep and goats. Joe also spent much of his youth heavily involved in the family livestock market as well as 4-H, FFA and the National Junior Angus Association. He received his B.S. in Animal Science from Virginia Tech where he was on the livestock judging team and worked on the college research farm. Prior to joining Wagonhammer, Joe worked for the North American Limousin Foundation for seven years, first as the Director of Commercial Marketing before becoming the Assistant Executive Director. He has served on the board of the Beef Improvement Federation and the International Limousin Council. He enjoys judging cattle, fitting calves, playing golf and spending time with his wife Kelly. Give Joe a call to set up a ranch visit or just talk cattle.  (303) 884-3900

Bret Schlenger

Bret is the Ranch Manager. He joined Wagonhammer Ranches in November 2020. Bret grew up in NW Iowa where Bret and his family raised quarter horses and ran their family tack business.  He moved to Nebraska in 2008 when Bret went to work at the Pitzer Ranch.  After being in the area, he decided that the Sandhills was where he wanted to stay and raise his family.  He enjoys the lifestyle that goes along with ranching and being able to do it as a family.  In their spare time, Bret and his family can be found in the arena riding horses they have raised. Bret is a 2005 graduate of Northeast Community College’s Animal Science program.  He and his wife Shawna reside near Ericson, Nebraska with their five children, Braelynn, Paige, Calvin, Bentley, and Evelyn.  Shawna is the Kindergarten teacher at Wheeler Central Schools. 

Don Kahl

Donnie’s career at Wagonhammer began in 1984.  He lives at the West Ranch with his wife, Peg. Donnie looks after several hundred commercial cows and has a high standard of care for both the cattle and the range.  Donnie has two sons & a daughter. Chelsey and her two children live in Elgin, NE.  Chris lives in Lincoln. Trevor and his wife ranch near Whitney, NE.  Peg has four sons, Marcus & Jen and their three children are living in CA. Dannis & Jennifer have  three children and reside in AZ. Dallas & Shelly and their two daughters  are also living in AZ. Dustin & Jessica have two daughters and make their home in FL. Donnie & Peg enjoy their 13 Grandchildren, They all have helped on the Ranch, or are willing to, as time and travel permits.

Tim Norrell

Tim was born and raised in Texas, he met his wife Emily, a Nebraska native, in college.  Tim and Emily have two daughters Madison and Mallory, they both love the outdoors and animals. Tim also enjoys the outdoors hunting, fishing, and spending time with his family.  Tim works at the East Ranch with the registered cattle.

Tedd Mayer

Tedd joined the East Ranch Wagonhammer crew in June of 2021. Tedd & Meghan are both originally from SW Iowa. They met in Nebraska and got married in August of 2018. He received his associate’s degree in ranch management from Colby Community College in Colby KS.  He then studied animal science at Northwest Missouri State University, where he received my bachelor’s degree. Tedd & Meghan enjoy rodeo, cutting horses, and the ranching lifestyle in the sandhills.  Tedd works at the East Ranch with the registered cattle.

Alan Snider

Al looks after the South Ranch Registered Charolais herd.  Al and wife Kathy have been with Wagonhammer since 1997 and have raised their family on the South Ranch. Daughter Randi is married to Keith Brown and they have 2 children.  Daughter Cara lives in  Bartlett and is the Clerk for Wheeler County.  Son Monte lives in Wheeler County and trains horses.  Son Kent (Goober) lives in Sutherland and is married to Danielle and they have two children. The Sniders love rodeo and Kathy is an accomplished photographer.

Matthew Kurpgeweit

Matt joined the Wagonhammer team in August of 2019. He will be working with Bret and the commercial cows at the South Ranch. Matt studied animal science at Northeast Community College. Matt and his wife Alyx enjoy spending time with their children, Wesley and Rhett, along with hunting and fishing. Matt also enjoys working with and raising his horses. Alyx is attending Northeast pursuing her registered nursing degree.

Zane Patrick

Zane joined the South Ranch in May of 2021. After attending Wheeler Central High School in Bartlett, he attended Northeast Community College in Norfolk and got an electrical degree. Once he graduated from Northeast he then went to Mid-Plains Community College in McCook and was on the rodeo team where he made it to the College National Finals Rodeo in 2 events, steer wrestling and team roping. In his free time he enjoys roping in the arena, riding colt, or any other outdoor activities. He and his fiancé live in Bartlett. Kamryn works as a radiology tech in Ord at the hospital.

Arlyn Wilke

Arlyn Wilke is the Feedlot/Farm manager at Albion.  His responsibilities include purchasing and marketing the feedlot cattle, managing rations and consumption, commodity purchasing, crop production, and overseeing the feedlot/farming crew.  Arlyn has a great deal of industry experience.  After graduating from South Dakota State, he farmed and fed cattle with his brother on the family operation near Columbus NE.  Arlyn then joined Cargill, first working on the management team at the Schuyler processing plant, then at the Leoti KS yard where he was cattle manager.  When long-time feedlot manager, Jim Brown, retired in 2009, we were fortunate to be able to convince Arlyn to return to NE and take up his present position.  Arlyn and his wife, Theresa, have five children.  Joni and husband Jesse Hegemann have three children.   Eric and wife Chantelle have four children.  Son Trenton lives in Seattle with his Sarah.  Ethan is employed by Pokey Feeders in Scott City, KS. Lauren is a registered nurse.  Lauren’s husband, Bryce, is a member of the US Marine Special Forces. 

Ronnie Grass

Ronnie joined the crew in 2021. He is the Assistant Feedlot & Farm Manager at the Albion location. Ronnie and his wife Jen have two children, Colton and Clarisa. They are originally from Missouri where Ronnie had a top set of Registered Charolais. Upon joining the company, he sold his herd to Wagonhammer and we are happy to incorporate his genetics with ours. In their free time, the Grass family enjoy showing cattle, dirt track racing, and hunting.

Fernando Flores

Fernando Flores joined the Wagonhammer Crew in September of 2017.  Fernando brings to the crew vast knowledge of the cattle industry.  Fernando received his Bachelors of Science, Animal Science degree from California State University Fresno in May of 2016.  Fernando works at the Albion yard caring for the cattle there. Fernando and his wife Yoana have a son, Sebastian.

Shawn McBride

Shawn is the Cattle Manager at Wagonhammer’s Albion Feedlot.  He joined us in 2015.  Shawn has worked in the Albion area with livestock for many years.  His wife Sandra is an Albion native.  They have two sons.  Dustin is a teacher and Spencer is employed at Bomgaars in Albion.

Jim Beal

Jim joined Wagonhammer full time in late 2015 after working for us several years on a part-time basis.  Jim operated heavy equipment just prior to coming to work for  us, but has many years of varied experience including working in feed yards.  Jim works at the Albion Feed Yard as a feeder, equipment operator, and about anything else that needs done.  He has a passion for Harleys and enjoys cruising when the weather is good.

Jon Hall

Jon grew up in Colorado and graduated from Ft. Lupton, CO in 1985. He started his trucking career in Fall of 1988 in the oil field. He moved to Albion in the spring of 1990 and drove for Coash for the fertilizer season. He bought his first truck in 1994 and been driving otr since. He met his wife Denise, an Albion native in 1996 and got married in 1997. They have 3 girls Amber, Erica and Crystal. In his free time he enjoys time with family and friends, hunting, fishing, camping, stock car racing, drag racing and muscle cars.

Austin Summers

Austin joined the Wagonhammer Feedlot Crew in 2022. He has a broad set of experiences which include operating big equipment, construction: interior and exterior, and working with livestock. He is passionate about hunting. Austin grew up in the Boone County area. He and his spouse Molly have a son Brodiee. Austin has an older son Beckam.

Mary Jo Lueken

Mary Jo became employed as the Office Manager in 2021. She and her husband David are Albion natives. They enjoy stock car racing, golfing, and family. They have a son Harvey, the joy of their lives.