National Checkoff News

April 23, 2024

Texas Ranch Wins National Environmental Stewardship Award

FORT WORTH (April 18, 2024) – G Bar C Ranch, a North Texas cattle ranch committed to sustainability, was named the national winner of the 2023 Environmental Stewardship Award Program (ESAP) for its exemplary stewardship practices and conservation achievements. The ranch, which is owned by GC and Mary Ellis and operated by their daughter Meredith and long-time ranch manager Michael Knabe, became the fifth Texas-based operation to be awarded the national title.

G Bar C Ranch was nominated by Texas & Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association to compete for the Region IV ESAP award after being named the 2023 Texas ESAP winner at the 2023 Cattle Raisers Convention & Expo. G Bar C Ranch was named the Region IV ESAP winner in February allowing the ranch to then compete alongside five other cattle operations from across the U.S. for the national title.

“For our operation, this is a lifetime achievement award, and this is a moment I will remember for the rest of my life,” said Meredith Ellis of G Bar C Ranch. “It took me going far away to college and coming home to realize just how special ranching is and how I want to be just like my greatest mentor, my father.”

G Bar C Ranch, located in Rosston, Texas, outside the sprawling Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex, preserves 3,000 acres of diverse habitat supporting more than 660 catalogued species of plants, animals, birds, mosses, lichens and other ecological communities. The ranch implements an adaptive multi-paddock strategy that rotates cattle through 58 permanently fenced pastures. The ranch also prioritizes water quality, implementing stewardship practices promoting clean water that feeds into the Trinity River, a water source responsible for half of Texans’ water needs.

“Stewardship means that I am a shepherd and must take care of all the living things that call this place home,” said Ellis. “No animal, plant or insect is too insignificant for consideration.”

G Bar C Ranch received the national award in Washington, D.C. during the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) Legislative Conference. ESAP was established in 1991 by NCBA to recognize outstanding stewardship practices and conservation achievements of U.S. cattle producers. The program highlights stewardship and provides landowners and ranch managers with examples of stewardship that can benefit cattle operations throughout the nation.

To learn more about G Bar C Ranch and the Ellis family’s commitment to the land, visit