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Meet the Member Sandy Singer
story by Ruth Nicolaus
For many years, Sandy Singer was the friendly face in the rodeo arena office.
The La Junta, Colo. woman served for 28 years as a rodeo secretary in the Colorado Pro Rodeo Association, and still keeps books for the association.
Growing up in Las Animas, Colo., she got her start when sisters Jenny and Jerri Mason, rodeo secretaries themselves, decided she needed to learn. So they sat her down at their kitchen table, explained the instructions to her, and the next day, she found herself at her first rodeo.
Sandy works at La Junta Livestock for the Honey family, and has worked there since 1990. She stays busy with her role is as office manager, and with a weekly sale. The Honeys have been involved in rodeo for many years, and they understand the sport and have allowed her to be gone for long weekends to secretary rodeos. “They are a great family to work for, very family oriented.”
She married her husband Merle in 1972, and for several years, they provided breakaway calves and tie-down animals for college, amateur and pro rodeos. They also trucked together, hauling cattle to as far away as Montana and California. For a while, they ran two trucks, with Sandy driving one. “That was back before women did those things,” she noted. They also hauled timed event cattle to rodeos for others as well.
She retired from rodeo secretarying in 2019, after s shoulder replacement, training her great-niece, Colby Canfield, to take over for her.
Technology has changed since she started secretarying in the early 1990s. Sandy remembers sitting in a hotel room, taking phone entries and typing the daysheets. Now, with her smart phone, she can get turnouts and communicate with other secretaries. As part of her job with La Junta Livestock, she even texts pictures of purchaser sheets to buyers, instead of emailing and faxing them. She relies on her office help as her “I.T.” assistants.
She attributes her success to everyone around her, “to great rodeo committees, great stock contractors, and contestants. They helped me be what I am.” They were what made her a better secretary, she said.
She and Merle have helped organize the Las Animas Rodeo for several years.
They are the parents of two sons, one of whom passed away at the age of nine. It was tough, getting over the loss of their boy, but she and Merle prevailed. “You either let it take over or you learn to move on.” Sandy leaned on her parents for help, who also had four children pass away.
She and Merle have two grandsons.