Capturing the Essence of a FarmHer’s Drive in South Dakota
Just north of Gann Valley in South Dakota, you’ll find yourself surrounded by rolling cattle pastures where the Sinkie Ranch began. Today it’s operated by 5th-generation rancher, Taylor Sinkie, and her dad, Matt. Taylor has proven to be a driven young professional with sights on continuing the family operation.
Taylor’s favorite memories while growing up have one common theme: working with her dad. In fact, it was her dad that planted the seed she should start her own business. When she was young, her father told her there is always an opportunity to start a business. When she turned fourteen, Matt explained she could apply for a loan to buy livestock, and after a couple years the loan could be renewed and could be used to add more livestock to the herd. She grew up on a cattle operation, which began her interest of branching out to start her own herd. After she received her loan at 14, purchased a few of the show heifers she had previous shown. At 16-years-old, she had the chance to the renew the loan and buy more livestock.
Taylor is one of many talents, from working business logistics to interacting with new people and photography. She wanted to find a way to combine all talents into a career. While growing up, Taylor always had a love for photography. Her dad bought a camera, camcorder and tripod to take pictures and videos for their 2012 online sales in January. Once her work was posted, she started receiving calls and texts from potential clients looking for help with their online sales. That is when her photography business took off!
Taylor takes pictures and videos any clients that need a photographer for their online sales. She has also tried her hand at taking some family photos, senior pictures of my sister, Taryn, and some baby pictures of my son, Kelon. She admits she likes livestock photography the most, but enjoys the variety of taking pictures of people because she can be more creative through poses and scenes.
On the foundation of her interests and personal determination, she developed a website and Facebook page where she advertises upcoming sales and Sinkie Ranch. She uses her love of photography as content to post for the sale and initialize conversation with prospective customers. In addition to Sinkie Show Steers, Taylor and Matt have started a Latham® Hi-Tech Seeds Dealership. She is planning to use her Latham® dealership as a way to continue expanding on the ranch. In both her club calf operation and seed dealership, Taylor admits the joy of the sale doesn’t come until she sees her customers succeed.
“I visit our customers to take their seed orders and help them select the best hybrid or variety for their farm,” says Taylor. “I also keep track of the bookkeeping and inform our customers when seed is ready for pickup or drop-off.”
Achieving a degree in Business Administration at Southeast Technical Institute is the next to-do on Taylor’s list. She graduated from Wessington Springs High School in May of 2014, and plans to start online classes in the Spring of 2017 and graduate in the Fall of 2018 or Spring of 2019. She knows this degree will help advance both her club calf and seed business. Taylor has achieved the task creating opportunities for what she loves at a young age, which can be a hefty task for many.
Showing calves with her family is a bond that has been growing since Taylor was little. “Going to a show with my family is something we bond over whether we win or lose; we always have a good time,” Taylor says.
Taylor’s dream is to provide the same environment that she grew up in for her family someday. In 10 years, her goal is to own 50 head of cattle, 30 breeding ewes and farm. She has taken the reins of the future of her life in agriculture, undoubtedly serving as an inspiration to others. She shares advice for anyone looking to find and opportunity and make agriculture their lifestyle.
“You can’t give up if someone tells you you’re not good enough,” she says. “Anyone can accomplish anything, but they have to be willing to understand that failure leads to success.”