I ranch along the San Pedro River in southern Arizona, my business is raising grassfed beef for local markets in Tucson and Phoenix.  

As a farmer-citizen, I work outdoors with my hands and indoors with a mac.  I raise cattle, coax a living from the soil, and try to advocate for what I consider just.   


I am an entrepreneur, dedicated to making my own way and living life on my own terms.   


I’m also genuinely interested in the world of ideas.  I am a classical liberal who believes that the human condition can best be improved through liberty.  The chief hindrance to the ideal condition, in my mind,  is the imposition of misplaced authority.  

Jefferson famously said:

I have sworn upon the altar of God,

eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man.

That seems like a pretty good place to start...

Curriculum Vitae


Jun 04 - Jun 07               Harvard University    Masters of Liberal Arts, Government

Aug 01 - Dec 01               University of Arizona              Graduate Study, Geology

Jun 96 - May 00               U.S. Air Force Academy          B.S. History, B.S. Sciences (biology)

Awards, Grants, & Affiliations:

Presenter, Hillsdale College

Symposium on food, food ethics, and entrepreneurship.  October 2014

Presenter, Northwestern University

Symposium on food, food ethics, and “locavorism.”  Winter 2013

Kinship Fellow, Kinship Conservation Institute

Searle Family Trust sponsored fellowship.  Summer 2013.

TEDx Bozeman Presenter

February, 2013

Delegate, American Council on Germany Foreign Exchange (McCloy Fellow)

Member of 4-person traveling delegation to Germany to study agriculture and trade.  Fall 2012.

Lincoln Fellow, Claremont Institute for the Study of Statesmanship and Political Philosophy. 

August, 2012

Selected, Yale School of Forestry

Offered enrollment in selective one-year masters program in Environmental Science.  Voluntary deferment.

TEDx Tucson Presenter

November, 2011

Farm Bureau “Excellence in Agriculture” Award, Arizona

November, 2011

Lone Mountain Fellow, Property and Environment Research Center

Resident research fellow charged with publishing an account of legal challenges to conservation easement vehicles.  Bozeman, Montana, July-August 2010.

Essayist, The Seven Fund

Selected from 2200 entries in 88 countries; published in “The Morality of Profit.”  August 2010.

Presenter, 8th International Conference on Biodiversity

Faculty of Applied Economics, Paul Cezanne University; presenting results of biodiversity-friendly management activities.  Aix-en-Provence, France, June 2010.

Liberty Fund Speaker: “Entrepreneurship and the Environment”

Facilitated discussion on the role of liberty and responsibility in free market environmentalism. Emigrant, Montana, September 2009.

Livestock and Crop Conservation Grant, Arizona Department of Agriculture

Top recipient of $150,000 voter-approved grant for “Mogollon & San Pedro Open Watershed Preservation” proposal.  Project protects open space on 12,500 acres and protect riparian corridors on two valuable riparian areas in southern Arizona.  August, 2009.

Graduate, Property and Environment Research Center’s “Enviropreneur Institute”

Selected as an international finalist for participation in competitive program designed to apply free market principles to environmental problems.  July 2009.

Company Grade Officer of the Year

Selected, first of 2700 officers for ability to manage intense acquisitions programs, develop professional organizations, and generate valuable management tools in support of operations. Hanscom Air Force Base, Massachusetts.  November 2005.

John R. Rupp Award for Interdisciplinary Studies

Outstanding cadet in multi-major academics, Rhodes Scholar nominee (academic advisors). United States Air Force Academy, Colorado.  May 2000.


Apr/Jun 2011

Speaker, Nebraska Grazing Lands Coalition annual “traveling roadshow” and Nebraska Cattleman’s Association

Presenting model of sustainable production, innovative marketing, and independent agrarianism


Board of Directors, Southwest Grassfed Livestock Alliance

In conjunction with the Quivira Coalition, this regional alliance advocates and educates for issues relating to pasture-raised livestock in the greater southwest region (California, Colorado, New Mexico, Utah, Arizona, Nevada).


Owner/Chief Executive Officer, Double Check Ranch Grassfed Natural Beef

Business: Developed fledgling grassfed beef business into mainstay of Southern Arizona’s natural foods culture.  Business supplies thousands of households and growing number of restaurants/resorts with high quality, locally raised, sustainable beef raised only on grass pasture.  Annual sales over five years have risen from $12,000 to over $455,000.

Developed the sole vertically integrated beef operation in Southwestern region in which control is maintained over cow/calf production, grass-finishing, artisan processing, and direct marketing.

Owner/operator of Double Check Ranch Meats, only state-inspected abbatoir capable of all-natural/organic certification.

Culture: Active participant in local foods movement.  Guiding ranch tours (e.g. hosting Outstanding in the Field), writing for sustainability organizations (e.g. Edible Phoenix & Southwest Grassfed Alliance), speaking to local foods advocacy groups (e.g., panelist for screening of Food, Inc.), and advocating the revival of small-scale, organic production, processing, and marketing.

Conservation: Activities include partnering with Audubon Society in designating 215 acres of private conservation land as an “Important Birding Area,” developing joint riparian management plan with The Nature Conservancy, fighting a protracted legal battle with local county road authorities over motorized access into Bureau of Land Management riparian corridor, brokering conservation easement on 1,100 acres of lower Mogollon grassland ecosystems.

Management: Integral partner in managing 12,000 acres of public/private land incorporating upper Sonoran desert, riparian gallery forest, juniper/oak grassland, and pinon/fir forest.  Applied holistic grazing management ensures adequate rest/rotation periods for paddock-based management units.  Responsibilities include careful monitoring of grazing effects, consistent livestock herding/moves, forward planning for landscape description-oriented management activities, watershed restoration, water development and wildlife habitat restoration.

2000 - 2006

U.S. Air Force Officer

Foreign Area Officer, Maintenance Officer, Acquisitions Program Manager, Combat Rescue Officer (Special Operations) Indoctrination

Experience in applied leadership (10-400 personnel), and managing large programs of more than $600 million.  Voluntary combat-zone deployment in support of Afghan operations.  Joint Service Commendation Medal, Air Force Commendation Medal, Distinguished Graduate Squadron Officer School.


John A. Baker Internship, Atlantic Council, Washington D.C.

Internship at non-partisan think-tank with particular concentration in international policy development.  Exposure to the inner workings of Beltway policy formulation.


Resident: Azad-Jammu Kashmir, Pakistan

Hands-on involvement in U.N. Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) program for developing watershed solutions utilizing livestock herding management.


Resident: Maseru, Lesotho, Southern Africa

Informal exposure to U.S Agency for International Development (USAID) watershed/range management project, introduction to principles of livestock management/grassland ecology.

Selected Publications:

Ranching: A Hands-On Exercise in Environmental Ethics,” in “Environmental Ethics: What Really Matters, What Really Works (2nd Ed.)” Oxford University Press (publication forthcoming, November 2011).

“Safe Food.  At Any Cost,”   The Freeman, Vol. 61, January/February 2011.

The Morality of Profit: An Inquiry,” ed. Michael Fairbanks, (publication forthcoming, 2011).

Ranching for Biodiversity: Managing Toward Stability on an Arizona Cattle Ranch,” Proceedings of the 8th International Conference on Biodiversity; Faculty of Applied Economics, Universite Paul Cezanne: Aix-en-Provence, France.  August, 2010.

Eminent Domain & Conservation Easements Collide,” PERC Reports, Vol. 28, Issue 3. Fall, 2010.

Grassfed Beef and the Politics of ‘Local’,”  PERC Reports, Vol. 28, Issue 1. Spring, 2010.

The Market’s Madness For Pastured Eggs”  Stockman Grass Farmer, Vol. 10: October, 2009.

"Farmers’ Markets Under Fire", Tucson Weekly,  January, 2008.

Cut Government Link to the Food Chain,” Tucson Citizen,  June 2007.