I am proud to say that butchery and the love of craft skills are in my DNA. My dad was a butcher and even opened his butcher shop, Underly’s Market. My grandparents on my mom’s side were both meat cutters, and my mom is an artist; painting and sculpting are her gifts. My busha learned to butcher on the farm during the depression. It was the mid-seventies, and boxed beef was making a run. My family struggled with the butchery business. We lost the butcher shop, and eventually, we all lost a generation of skilled meat cutters.
I never left the meat business. Teaching is my passion, and I have been fortunate to travel the country for the past 20 years, teaching, speaking, and helping people make money in the meat business. The common theme has been “we need more training.” So I wrote the book, The Art of Beef Cutting, to help fill what I saw as a void in the meat literature. It has been well received, but the voices keep getting louder. The need for meat education, skilled training, and certification to meet the demands of today’s consumers is enormous.
These experiences and the fact that I’m a bit of a tech geek have encouraged and motivated me to develop an affordable, high-quality, web-based curriculum offering Range® Meat Clerk and Meat Cutter certificate training. My goal is to help bring back this skilled trade and a living wage in the butchery business. With the success of Range® Meat Academy online, we’re on our way!
Kari is our fearless leader and meat geek with mad technical skills. She works with the motto that everything is possible if you’re not afraid to take a few detours along the way. You can see Kari’s influence in just about every part of the meat world. Perhaps you’ve seen her work in the meat case (she helped develop many new cuts for the industry). Maybe you noticed a great-looking poster on a retail wall (Range® created tons of educational meat posters seen in shops and retail outlets everywhere). You’ve probably even seen her handiwork in catalogs and marketing materials for companies everywhere (Range® developed a library of beef cuts photography for the beef industry). When Kari’s not working in her meat lab, she’s speaking, leading workshops, or maybe judging a competition (Chopped judge, Pig Farmer of the Year judge). If you’re a fellow meat geek, you might have seen some of her writings in the meat trade journals. In her “down” time, Kari uses her creative energy tending to her vegetable garden and flower garden. She loves getting on her tractor to work and sculpt her land.
Ruth has been with Range® since it started in 2002. She’s been part-time handling just about every aspect of the business- writing, accounting, marketing, sales, social media, you name it. This year she came on full time and is in charge of RMA sales, and we just added the RMA Farm Store sales to her job description. She’s busy! When she’s not nurturing a student or client’s journey, you might see her hanging out with her schnauzers, cutting wood, wielding a machete, and taking care of the grounds on the farm.
Sarah is the Range Meat Academy Success Manager and the backbone of the company. She helps with onboarding clients and assisting students to continue moving forward. Born in Central California and raised in Southern Oregon, Sarah has a long history of administrative support and management ranging from insurance to the timber industry. She brings the perfect blend of west coast kindness and support experience to the Range Team. Sarah loves the company of good friends and raising her 4 boys. Sarah once drove 13 hours straight and almost 1,000 miles with her family just to get to Disneyland in time for opening.
Born and raised in Alaska, David has the independence and tenacity to handle the accounting, bookkeeping, and payroll at Range® Meat Academy. As our Cash Cow Manager, he ensures we’re following the rules and keeping the numbers in balance. David and his wife, Sarah, are raising four boys. He loves spending weekends watching the boys play soccer, mountain biking, or traveling the northwest for a soccer game. David has a fake front tooth due to a family pie-eating contest that was a little too competitive. He did win and still has the trophy to prove it.
I am a spirited and amiable graphic designer who is fully committed to delivering top-notch service to all my clients. With over a decade of experience in providing graphic design solutions, I recently joined rangemeatacademy in February 2021. I have faced challenges such as scaling mountains, swimming in waters inhabited by crocodiles, and completing several marathons. These experiences have not only motivated and stimulated me but also instilled a sense of fear in me. On Tuesdays, I indulge in Burlesque, which is another facet of my life. My work style is characterized by speed and efficiency, exceptional communication skills, an eye for detail, and the ability to bring a creative and distinctive approach to every project. Simply share the brief with me, and I’ll get right on it!
The Illinois Board of Higher Education has approved Range® Meat Academy to operate as a private business and verarioral soo
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