Cadwell is new west river fieldman

DICKINSON - In the last week, people visiting the livestock auction houses in southwestern North Dakota might have seen a not-so-familiar face in the corrals.

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DICKINSON - In the last week, people visiting the livestock auction houses in southwestern North Dakota might have seen a not-so-familiar face in the corrals.

Cody Cadwell's face will most likely become more familiar in the coming months as he gets comfortable in his new position as west river fieldman for the North Dakota Stockmen's Association.

"I've only been out and about for a few days on the job, it's been good so far," Cadwell said. "It's new places and new faces."

Cadwell replaces Blaine Northrup, who is the new agriculture law enforcement division administrator for the state of Nevada.

"It's always difficult to bid farewell to a good employee like Blaine," NDSA Executive Vice President Wade Moser said. "But we wish him the best with his new position and welcome Cody to his. I know Cody will serve North Dakota producers well."


Cadwell's responsibilities will include brand and feedlot inspection, traffic checks of livestock haulers and livestock investigations. The NDSA's fieldmen work closely with local sheriff's offices and states attorneys as they are key investigators in regards to cattle-related crimes.

Fieldmen are licensed peace officers and Cadwell will be attending the North Dakota police academy in January of 09. He currently holds a temporary license.

Chief brand inspector for the North Dakota Stockmen's Association Darrell Howard said there were several character traits Cadwell held that made him a good fit for the position.

"Being a good people person is very important and having that attention to detail, being the southwest fieldman, he's going to be dealing with stuff like investigations on stolen cattle, fraud and those sorts of things," Howard said. "The whole world in general is becoming more detail orientated, especially in the law enforcement area."

Ask a brand inspector what skills are necessary for the job and attention to detail is at the top of the list. Cadwell began developing those skills, in part, by watching his grandfather Ken Kensinger, the inspector in charge at Central Livestock Auction in West Fargo.

Immediately following his high school graduation in 1995, Cadwell went to work at CLA as a brand inspector under the tutelage of his grandfather.

When his grandfather retired in 2007 and the inspector in charge position opened up, Cadwell applied and got the position. The following year, when the NDSA was looking for a new western North Dakota fieldman, Cadwell couldn't think of a reason not to apply.

"Basically, I was as high up as I could go there and it was a good opportunity to advance," Cadwell said.


Cadwell's jurisdiction goes from Highway 83, west to the Montana border. His counterpart, Fred Frederikson of Carrington's jurisdiction is everything east of Highway 83.

Cadwell said the livestock market on the western side of the state is decidedly different than the eastern side, mainly because Minnesota and eastern South Dakota cattle aren't required to be branded.

"It's different out here," Cadwell said. "The further east you go the less they know," about branding.

Cadwell and his wife, Kari, and daughter, Callie, 3, will move into Northrup's previous dwelling in Grassy Butte and welcome a fourth member of the family, who is due in June.

Kari has taken a job as the kindergarten teacher at Prairie School in Fairfield.

Along with a place to live, Northrup offered up some advice to Cadwell.

"There's kind of the basic stuff he told me, but you kind of figure things out on your own," Cadwell said. "Probably the biggest thing he told me was to plan out my day and if I was going somewhere try to do two or three things there so you don't waste the trip."

Cadwell said the first few days have been busy and that there is a lot to do out here, but he's excited to get out and see where the job takes him.


"There's more to do here...each day is kind of a different day," Cadwell said. "...It's something I really enjoy doing, otherwise I wouldn't be doing it."

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