Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo Past President and Chairman of the Board Don D. Jordan and family made the rodeo’s 90th anniversary one for the history books, with their historic $1 million purchase of the Grand Champion Steer at the Rodeo’s 2022 Junior Market Steer Auction on March 19.
The Grand Champion Junior Market Steer, exhibited by Aven Horn of Anson, Texas, was purchased by Barbara and Don D. Jordan, and family, including Lisa and Chris Cunningham, Leslie and Gary Hazlewood, Laura and Steve McNear for a record-breaking $1 million, surpassing the rodeo’s previous record of $625,000 set in 2019.
“The Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo and I were born in the same year, so we’ve spent a lot of birthdays together,” said Jordan, who will celebrate his 90th birthday in 2022, marking a symbolic year.
Jordan has a longstanding and special history with the rodeo. In 1986, he was elected to the Executive Committee. In 1987, he purchased the Grand Champion Steer for $75,000. From 1994 to 1996, Jordan served as president, followed by chairman of the board. In 1948, Jordan caught a calf in the calf scramble.
The Reserve Champion Junior Market Steer, exhibited by Tristan Himes of Sterling City, Texas, was purchased by Robert, Will and Catherine Clay; Andrea and Scott Fish; J Alan Kent Development — Julie and Alan Kent; and Sheri and Rob Walker for $675,000, also surpassing the rodeo’s previous record of $367,000 set in 2019.
“These kids are what Houston is all about,” said Kent. “People just want to be able to give back.”
With the record-breaking steer purchases, Aven will receive $85,000, and Tristan will receive $45,000.
Based upon placing, the rodeo establishes a guaranteed minimum payment for each exhibitor who qualifies for a junior market auction. The rodeo also sets a cap amount above the guaranteed minimum for each auction lot. When bidding exceeds the cap amount, the additional funds go into the rodeo’s Educational Fund to be used for scholarship and grant recipients. Since its beginning in 1932, the rodeo has committed more than $550 million to the youth of Texas and education.