February = ❤️ and this months Women of Wool feature is one we all ❤️! UWGA Executive Director Sierra Robinson Nelson was lucky enough to be born into a sheep ranching family in Northwest Colorado. Her ancestral ties to farming and ranching come from diverse places including the Carolinas, Tennessee, Oklahoma, Scotland, England, and finally southern Utah. Her great-grandfather left his home in Paragoonah, Utah and set out for the wilds of Western Colorado in 1921, finally settling in the Piceance basin where her parents still run 2,000 head of sheep. She is a member of the Cherokee nation and grew up spending summers in a teepee at sheep camp on the Swatch Mountain Range of the White River National Forest. She spent the rest of the year on a sheep ranch in the Northwest corner of Colorado. Growing up on the land helped Sierra love nature. Sierra especially loves fast walking horses, working dogs, and bum lambs. After high school she fought fire for the Forest Service to put herself through Utah State University studying History and Geography teaching. Upon graduation she taught 8th and 9th grade for three years while getting a Masters of Science in Environmental History from Utah State University. Next, she worked for Utah State University Extension as an Education Specialist for Utah Agriculture in the Classroom developing curriculum and guest lecturing at every College and University in the state. Things came full circle when Sierra was lucky enough to see the UWGA had a job opening and she found an opportunity to go back to her roots and serve the industry she loves. Sierra is happily married to the love of her life Nathan and together they have a four-year-old daughter and a seven-month-old daughter, two black labs, three Rambouillet ewes that lamb each spring, a huge garden, and a whole lot of fun! Sierra can often be found skiing on snow and water, snowmobiling, hiking, playing racquetball, wood working, fishing, hunting, and feeding lamb to everyone who comes to their house. (Sierra also enthusiastically tells everyone she meets to wear more wool.) The kids are seasoned road warriors because Sierra misses the ranch and loves to make the six-hour trek to Colorado to work on the ranch as much as possible; docking, shearing, riding horses, hunting coyotes, chasing sheep, and helping their kids understand the value of hard work and the vital importance of agriculture to their heritage and to the world.
We ❤️ SIERRA and appreciate her passion for the sheep industry and service she gives to all the producers across the State of Utah!