Fifth generation farmer and rancher in Central Texas, Chad is also the Production Manager for the Grassfed Livestock Alliance, LLC, helping to manage the day-to-day operations of the group and assisting its members in producing top quality American Grassfed beef. He is on the board of directors of the American Grassfed Association.
Chad spent 20 years in the commercial nursery and landscape industry in San Antonio. He has significant experience in greenhouse management and growing, landscape design and construction, turf management, irrigation, and arboriculture. He spent these years experimenting with biological, organic and other soil amendments to enhance and improve the landscapes of shopping centers, office/retail centers, industrial complexes and sports fields that were under his care. In 2004, he realized that the city had grown too large for the quality of life he and his family desired, so the family left San Antonio and moved to the family ranch near Mason, TX. After the move, he spent several years rebuilding crumbling infrastructures, clearing brush, renovating fields and upgrading animal genetics on the lands. When asked about the transition, Chad says simply that he used to grow grass to cut with machines and now he grows grass to harvest with animals.
McCollum-Lemke Ranches is now a multispecies operation humanely raising Grassfed cattle, sheep, goats, pigs and chickens. In 2012, the operation was awarded the Outstanding Conservation Rancher Award by NRCS. They are constantly experimenting and looking for better ways to raise animals and improve the land without the use of traditional chemicals and fertilizers through the use of mob grazing, biologicals, compost teas, cover crops, no-tilling and many other alternative methods of agriculture. His goal is to continually improve his land, his livestock and his family's way of life. He strives to be more than sustainable in his operation; he strives to be regenerative.
In his spare time, Chad is also President of the Mason Independent School District Board of Trustees, President of Hext Volunteer Fire Department, Vice President of Texas Hill Country Heritage Association and a member of various other community and civic organizations in and around Mason County.