Sunday, October 03, 2010

Delks Named 2010 New Mexico State Fair Ranch Family of the Year

Joe and Diane Delk, Mesilla Park, and their family were honored by the New Mexico State Fair (NMSF) and the New Mexico Cattle Growers Association (NMCGA) as this year’s Ranch Family of the Year during the rodeo performance on September 17.

“We are proud to honor Joe and Diane and their family,” said Bert Ancell, NMCGA President, Bell Ranch. “They are strong supporters of our association and the agricultural way of life, and we are proud to call them friends.”

Joe and Diane started out on the 2C Ranch east of Hurley, near Silver City, after Joe graduated from New Mexico State University (NMSU) in 1970. Their three sons, Neal, Mark and Byron, grew up in agriculture and all three showed livestock on the local and state level until graduating from high school.

“Family is very important to Joe and Diane,” Ancell said. “They worked hard to help their sons succeed, and to teach them the value of hard work and dedication. Today, a new generation is learning those same values and making their grandparents proud.”

Joe served as NMSF Junior Beef Superintendent, supervising the State Fair’s junior steer and heifer shows from 1993 to 2000. He also served as Junior Livestock Superintendent for the Southern New Mexico State Fair from 1992 through 2000. He has been an active member of the NMCGA for many years, and served as chairman of the Allied Industries Committee. He currently serves as President of the Aggie Rodeo Society, and continues to work to defend private property rights and agriculture.

In addition to all of their other contributions, the Delk family is probably best known for their music. People will travel for miles to hear the Delk Band play, and this year the Delks are celebrating the 76th year of having a dance band in the family. It started with Joe’s dad, Fiddlin’ Forrest Delk and His Gully Jumpers to what is known today as “The Delk Band”. Joe and Diane started The Delk Band in 1984 when Byron was 10 years old and they’ve been playing for dances around New Mexico now for 26 years. At one time, all three of Joe’s sons played in the band with their dad but that has gotten more difficult in recent years with family and work obligations.

An honor truly deserved. Congratulations to Joe & Diane and their family.

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