Kent Donica

Kent Donica

Kent Donica is a fourth-generation rancher from southern Oklahoma. He and his wife, Gayle, operate a ranch with a base of high-risk flyweight cattle, but at times the couple runs commercial cows, sheep, goats and any other class of livestock that will generate a profit. They have four adult kids, all of whom were raised with extensive involvement in the operation.

After graduating from Oklahoma State University in 1987 with a bachelor’s degree in animal science, Kent spent several years as a commodity buyer and worked with a very progressive farmer/rancher. He also spent 20-plus years managing and sorting cattle at livestock auctions across southern and eastern Oklahoma.

Soon after college graduation, he saw the huge disconnect between agricultural theory and practice and realized that most science required significant modification to be practiced and profitable in the real world. Kent also concluded, over years of observation, that the price of modern conventional inputs was becoming unprofitable, and the eventual consequence would be devastating for his ranch and family. After tinkering with regenerative practices for years, he finally put the pieces together and more fully realized the enormous (and fun!) value in the “completed puzzle.”

As a rancher myself, I understand the multi-faceted challenges of keeping an agricultural operation profitable and enjoyable in today’s economic environment. Like most ranchers and agriculture university graduates, I was steeped in conventional agriculture’s high-input, prescriptive production philosophy. Unfortunately, for an increasing number of us, that philosophy is leading to lower profits, depleted soils and diminishing hope for generational farm/ranch succession.

Discovering (and experimenting with) soil health- focused regenerative ranching principles and practices, probably saved my ranch. I know it changed my outlook and my family’s future for the better. The most gratifying aspect of being an Understanding Ag consultant is that I get to help others experience the same positive impacts of regenerative ranching while benefitting from the lessons I’ve learned along the way. The journey begins by listening to and understanding my clients’ goals and it leads to a valued partnership in regeneration that benefits generations to come.

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