John Olsen is a fifth-generation rancher from Ephraim, Utah. Kesko Ranch—a diversified cow-calf, hay, and turkey operation—was started in 1867 by his great-great-grandfather. It was there, alongside his six brothers and two sisters, that Olsen learned the values of honesty, hard work, and the importance of family and God.
Following high school graduation, Olsen attended Brigham Young University Idaho. He knew that an education was important and would be a great asset to his success as a rancher. While attending school, he was blessed to meet and marry his wife, Kayna. They now have three energetic children: Conner 5, Ellie 3, and Lucy 1. He spent his summer breaks and any other time he could working on Kesko Ranch where he applied what he was learning in school. He completed an internship with Cooper Farms, a vertically integrated turkey company located in Ft. Recovery, Ohio, prior to graduating in December 2012 with a bachelor’s degree in animal science.
Olsen and his family then moved back to Kesko Ranch where he took on an active role in the day-to-day management of the ranch. He also bought his own cowherd and became a co-owner with his father on their two-million-pound turkey operation. As time passed, Olsen and his family realized expansion opportunities in the area were limited. With a desire to continue ranching full time, he accepted a job in the southern panhandle of Nebraska at Eh Ranch, LLC, a family-owned diversified farming and cattle operation. Olsen managed the cattle side of the operation, which consisted of a cow-calf enterprise, backgrounding and marketing of calves, and heifer development. This position allowed Olsen to gain further managerial experience, increase his ranching knowledge, and in turn make beneficial improvements to the ranch.
A continual desire to better himself and a thirst for knowledge led Olsen to apply to the King Ranch® Institute for Ranch Management. As part of KRIRM, Olsen hopes to become a leader in the ranching industry as a professional ranch manger and by strengthening the ranches and ranching communities. He looks forward to sharing this experience with his family.