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Taylor Haynes of Cheyenne is among seven individuals to be inducted this week into the National Cowboys of Color Museum and Hall of Fame located in Fort Worth, Texas.
The induction ceremony salutes outstanding pioneers who contributed to the settling of the early American western frontier as well as acknowledges individuals who continue to be trailblazers committed to the legacy of western culture, according to the organization's Web site.
Haynes, a member of the University of Wyoming Board of Trustees, is the owner and operator of Thunderbasin Land, Livestock and Investment Company, a certified organic ranch in Wyoming. His cattle are all natural, grass-fed.
"Dr. Haynes has single-handedly grown the ranch to be a significant producer, selling organic beef all along the front range of Wyoming and Colorado," the release says. "Dr. Haynes has received the Merit Award for Advocate of Agriculture from the University of Wyoming College of Agriculture."
The National Cowboys of Color Museum and Hall of Fame is a non-profit organization founded in 2001 by Fort Worth husband and wife team Jim and Gloria Austin to acknowledge the contributions of Hispanic Americans, Native Americans, European Americans and African Americans in the settlement of the Western Frontier. For additional information about the 2008 Hall of Fame Inductees and other members of the museum's hall of fame, visit the Web site at www.cowboysofcolor.org.
Haynes has been an officer of the Independent Cattlemen of Wyoming and is past president of the Laramie County Stock Growers Association and Pole Mountain Cattlemen. He grew up on a produce farm in Louisiana, learning what a hard day's labor meant as he sweated in fields of watermelon, cantaloupe, sweet corn, yams and cotton.
He received a mechanical engineering degree from Southern University in 1969 and worked six years for Kennecott Energy in Utah. He changed careers, and went on to earn a medical degree from the University of Utah in 1979.
Haynes was recruited to Cheyenne to start a urology practice. He and his wife purchased a ranch west of Cheyenne, and he practiced urology and punched cattle until retiring from medicine in 1998.
"One day the little red light came on, and I started thinking I could live on a small ranch while still practicing medicine. The next thing you know I am running cows and building fence," Haynes notes.
"Ranching is not as glamorous as being a physician, but I've always considered myself a cowboy, even when I was following two mules back on the farm in Louisiana," he says. "I also love the physical nature of the work, and then there's the environment, which is so beautiful here on the High Plains."