Leadership Montana alumni in action: John Trudnowski, Butte - Class of 2018
Nancy Schlepp
May 31, 2023
Tom McGree
July 31, 2023


Jake Feddes, Manhatten, Class of 2017

Jake Feddes, Manhattan, Class of 2017

Interviewed by Owen Robbins, Hamilton, Class of 2019

Jake Feddes was raised in Manhattan, Montana on the Feddes Red Angus Ranch and continues to work on that 300 cow Registered Red Angus operation today.  While he did walk away from ranching for about 7 years, he’s been back with it now since 2015.  In addition to a busy ranching life, Jake also works for Superior Livestock as a Cattle Broker in a 5-state region.  This work keeps him on the road looking at cattle and helping commercial cattle producers market their animals through Superior over video and on a conference line during live auctions.  Jake has been married to Alyssa Feddes for 6 years.  He’s been blessed with 3 amazing children, 21-year-old McKenzie, 16-year-old son, Hunter, and a 10-year-old stepdaughter Ella.

In 2020, Jake and Alyssa purchased the Amsterdam Meat Shop and started Feddes Family Meats.  Here they process beef, pork, lamb, goat, bison and alpaca.  They opened a retail store at the meat shop where consumers can purchase many different types of local meat.  The operation has doubled in size, and they are continuing to look for ways to expand their operation.

In 2021 Jake was selected by The Cattle Business Weekly to their 30 Under 30 as an Innovative Leader in the industry. This month Jake traveled the country for 9 days with 71 leaders in the beef industry as the Chairman of the Young Cattleman’s Conference through NCBA.  He was voted as Chairman in 2019 and was selected as the person to lead this group on the tour to learn about all sectors of the industry as well as to advocate, public speaking as well as lobbying for our industry.  Jake says it was an honor to be seen as a leader within the cattle industry and to be able to lead This group.

Jake is a 2017 graduate of Leadership Montana and still stays in touch with his classmates on a regular basis.  His favorite memories from LMT include visiting the State Legislature, Job Shadowing with the Dept. of Agriculture in their Marketing Dept., and of course, after-hours gatherings with classmates.  That job shadowing with the Dept. of Ag. has opened opportunities for Jake to travel internationally to England/Scotland and Uruguay to learn more about beef in those countries.  He was surprised most by the size of the cattle in the British Isles.  There, producers are paid strictly on weight with no grading of beef quality.  Consequently, size matters.  At six feet, Jake was shocked to stand eye-to-eye with a 3200# bull and see 2500# cows regularly.  Unfortunately, their volume of red meat was overshadowed by the lack of quality in the finished product.  Uruguay, however, produces amazing beef with great flavor, and it’s pretty affordable.

As Jake looks at his continued role and involvement with LMT he regrets that the Ag industry is rarely represented in the program.  He loves the diversity within our state but is simultaneously disappointed with the lack of understanding about agriculture.  Jake sees his role as promoting LMT within his industry and simultaneously encouraging agriculture education within the state.

“Any chance I get, I will do “Agvocacy” work to try and teach people where their food comes from, how it’s raised and processed, how healthy it is, and about the people, families, and communities behind that food.  Too often, the people behind the food get forgotten, and it’s my hope to bring some light back to these heroes.”