Blue Bouillion is the Cattleman of the Year.
Boullion named Cattleman of the Year
Blue Boullion of Kaplan is the 2017 Cattle Festival Cattleman of the Year.
The 69th Louisiana Cattle Festival will take place Oct. 13-15 in downtown Abbeville.
Boullion will be among those recognized at this year’s Honoree Banquet at Magdalen Place in Abbeville, Thursday evening, Oct. 12, at 6 p.m. Tickets are available, for $15 each, from any festival member or by calling (337) 652-0646.
Blue’s lifelong involvement with the cattle industry began with helping on his grandfather’s beef and dairy farm. By the time he was 16 he was hiring out as a cowboy for several cattle ranchers in the parish. Blue graduated from Kaplan High in 1965 and in 1969 bought a one ton pickup truck and 32-foot trailer and began Blue’s Cattle Hauling. It would be the start of a life of service to the cattle industry.
Blue began hauling cattle for Dominique’s Stockyard in 1972 and credits Jack Heflin, who was a manager at Dominique’s at the time, with helping him gain contacts in and knowledge of the cattle business. In 1977 he became part owner of the Vermilion Livestock Sale Barn. He was a ranch manager for Randall Greene and owned a small cattle herd from the mid 70’s to 1985 on rented pasture. In 1981 he worked for the Louisiana Brand Commission as an investigator. In 1985 and for 27 years thereafter he worked for USDA as a Veterinary Technician. Blue worked at the height of the Brucellosis epidemic and during his tenure Louisiana went from a Class C to a Class Free State. He assisted in and encouraged the vaccination of 1000’s and 1000’s of heifers. It was common for Blue to call ranchers in his area and remind them to vaccinate their heifers.
Because of Blue’s work with Brucellosis in our area, he was well respected by USDA and he was put in charge of planning and logistics for epidemics around the country. He worked on Brucellosis in Florida, pseudorabies in swine in Iowa, cattle tuberculosis in California and New Castle’s disease in poultry in California.
For 42 years, Blue served on the Board of Directors for the Vermilion Parish Cattlemen’s Association. He was a valued member serving on many committees and offering valuable input into decisions made. His mentoring of younger board members and young ranchers in the parish was a hallmark of his time on the board. His vast contacts and experiences helped many young ranchers with proper management and marketing. It was his desire to help the industry in Vermilion Parish and young ranchers in particular that motivated Blue’s long term on the board.
Blue is married to Joan Broussard Boullion. He has two children, Todd Boullion and Kristi Hebert, two step-children Gerrett and Seth Gastal, and six grandchildren Mia, Slade, Whitney, Kailie, Jake and Elie.
Because of Blue Boullion’s service and dedication to the cattle industry, his knowledge and mentorship of numerous ranchers it is without reservation that the Louisiana Cattle Festival name him the 2017 Cattleman of the Year.