Ryan Konynenbelt – 2019 Canadian Champion
As the 2019 Canadian Livestock Auctioneer Champion, Ryan Konynenbelt is living his dream. Konynenbelt grew up on a feedlot and cow/calf operation near the small town of Nobleford Alberta. He fondly remembers going to auctions with his dad and grandfather, where he would sit for hours in awe of the auctioneers chant and skill. Konynenbelts love for cattle also came at a young age working with the 4H steers and working in the feedlot.
Konynenbelt auctioneering career began at an early age when he used YouTube videos and daily livestock auction webcasts to teach himself the skill of the chant. He interest truly began around the age of 12 and by the age of 15 he had sold his first charity sale for the local church. During high school Konynenbelt worked at the local auction barn in Picture Butte where he sold anything from rabbits to peacocks and everything in between. After high school graduation in 2014, Konynenbelt moved to Vermilion Alberta for college, where he spent most of his time working at the NBI – Vermilion Livestock Exchange, as well as at Heartland Livestock – Lloydminster. Many hours were put in out back sorting cattle or on the auction block where he gained many valuable hours of practice.
Konynenbelts love for the industry grew with every sale he was able to attend and be involved with. Konynenbelt believes that it doesn’t only take skill to be an auctioneer, but to have the passion and drive to give it yor all every day.
After college Konynenbelt moved back to Nobleford and began working in Fort MacLeod at Southern Alberta Livestock Exchange (S.A.L.E). During this time, Konynenbelt attended the Western College Of Auctioneering in Billings, Montana in 2015, where he learned more about the ins and outs of the industry.
Konynenbelt first auctioneering competition was with the LMAC in 2015 held in Winnepeg, MB. The people he met at the annual convention provided him with valuable tips and direction in which to further his career. He took it upon himself to get better in all aspects of the business as well as his auction chant. Coming back to the 2016 LMAC convention in Brussels, ON, Konynenbelt made the Top 10, ultimately placing 3rd and winning Rookie of The Year. 2017 brought the LMAC convention close to home in Lethbridge, AB where Konynenbelt placed 2nd overall. In 2018, he placed 3rd again at the LMAC competition held in Whitewood, SK. A few months later Konynenbelt was crowned the International Livestock Auctioneer Champion at the Calgary Stampede.
However, the 2019 LMAC convention and competition was a highlight for Konynenbelts career, where he was crowned the 2019 Canadian Livestock Auctioneer Champion in Thorsby, AB! With the title came a custom engraved belt buckle, bronze auctioneer statue, cash prize, custom made ring, and the use of a 2019 Eby Stock Trailer.
“Being able to be in the LMAC Convention setting as a young guy starting out with auctioneers who have been in it for years gave me the incentive to keep coming back to learn and gain more experience. When you love your career and the business you are in these conventions allow you to immerse yourself with like minded professionals!”
Even though Konynenbelt has won the LMAC Auctioneering Competition he plans to keep attending the annual convention. “The relationships you build with other people in the business are worth holding on to. It keeps you in touch with what the industry is doing in other parts of the country. The LMAC is a great organization that works hard for both the livestock marketing industry and livestock producers in Canada by working with government agencies to keep the needs of our industry in mind in transport, handling, and legal regulations.”
Konynenbelt continues to work at Southern Alberta Livestock Exchange (S.A.L.E) in Fort MacLeod, AB. His duties at S.A.L.E include sales rep, auctioneer, and yard manager for both the live cattle auctions, large calf and yearling fall video sales, as well as involvement in the sheep and goat marketing industry.
Konynenbelt would like to recognize that none of the success he has, would have happened without the support of his family and friends. “My family, and my wife especially, have been very supportive over the years. Always coming to cheer me on, no matter where the competition is being held, and supporting me through the hectic busyness of the livestock auctioneer life. The people over at S.A.L.E have especially been beneficial in growing me in the industry. I couldn’t have done it without them.” Konynenbelt would also like to thank the LMAC for the opportunity to represent the organization as the 2019 Canadian Livestock Auctioneer Champion.
2019 Canadian Livestock Auctioneering Champion Ryan Konyenbelt wins the use of an Eby Trailer for a year. Sponsors Ross Annett of T-Down Trailers and Chuck Pfleeger of Eby present the award
Kirk Goldsmith, Dryland Cattle Trading Corp. Veteran, AB receives the Reserve Champion Auctioneer Buckle presented by Judy Finseth of the Canadian Hereford Association
1st Runner Up
Brad Martens from VJV Westlock was awarded the Canadian Shorthorn Association buckle presented by Dan Skeels on behalf of the CSA.
2nd Runner Up
Kyle Soderberg Northern Livestock Sales Lloydminster SK receives the 2nd Runner Up Buckle from Cody Miller of the Canadian Limousin Assoc.
3rd Runner Up
3rd Runner Up Buckle was presented to Rob Bergevin from the Foothills Auctioneers Inc from Stavely AB. This buckle was sponsored by the Canadian Simmental Assoc. and presented by CSA General Manager Bruce Holmquist.
Most Congenial Auctioneer
Brock Taylor from Taylor Auctions, Assembly and Exports in Melita MB receives the Most Congenial Auctioneer Buckle from sponsor Rhett Parks of Whitewood Livestock Sales. This award is voted on by the auctioneers in the competition.
LMAC Rookie of the Year
Casey Lawes of Veteran AB was winner of the LMAC Rookie of the Year. Lawes was the top rookie out of 15 contestants. He received the Boerhinger-Engleheim Rookie Buckle.
Most Improved Auctioneer
Justin Perlich of Perlich Bros. was the winner of the Heartland Order Buying Co. Most Improved Auctioneer Buckle. Presentation was made by Rick Wright of HOBC.
Stockyard of the Year
The Canadian Angus Stockyard of the Year was awarded to the Ontario Livestock Exchange (OLEX) from Waterloo Ontario. Accepting the award were owners Larry and Marianne Witzel. This award was presented by Myles Immker, Bob Tonner and Brian Good from the Canadian Angus Association.
Thorsby Stockyards Inc. ownership group of Chance Martin, Corey Lawrence and Jeff Fritz along with staff were recognized as the host market for 2019. The painting was sponsored and presented by the Beef Breeds Association.
Top 5 Rookie Auctioneers
Top 12 Auctioneers
L – R
- Bob Miller, Mountain Markets Assoc. Kamloops BC
- Larry Witzel, OLEX, Waterloo ON
- Ken Perlich, Perlich Bros. Lethbridge AB
L – R
- Neil Martin – Mardale Livestock, Floradale ON
- Marty Ward – C & W Order Buying AB
- Bruce Homquist – Canadian Simmental Assoc.
- Corey Sekura – Auctioneer – Drayton Valley AB
- Ab Carroll – 2018 LMAC Champion – Downeyville ON
- Jason Danard – Calgary Stockyards, Calgary AB