Celebrating Terry Gompert


external image Terry-Gompert.jpgexternal image 7-31-026.jpg

Terry L. Gompert October 29, 1944 - March 25, 2011

A site to honor Terry's life and work and to keep building on the foundations he created.
Terry's family and friends, the regenerative grazing and agriculture community and the world too-soon lost a great man on March 25th, 2011. Terry was a force of nature - a tireless discoverer, connector, rancher and educator. All of us who knew him loved him, and we miss him. Terry set the standard for effectiveness and impact in uncovering, developing and publicizing the successful innovations of everyday ranchers, farmers and researchers. In keeping with the spirit of Terry's work, this site is intended to capture and carry on his creative holism. The first project of the site is a biographical wiki describing his life, accomplishments and impact on us - his friends and students. We invite you to contribute to the collaborative documents below, and share your insights, links, photos and videos about his accomplishments and impacts on you, your ranch or farm, your soils, your quality of life.

Contributing to this document: Instructions

This website is a wiki - a collaborative document, a community testament to Terry and a way to pull together some of the many resources that Terry created and inspired in his life. We welcome everyone whose life was touched by Terry to contribute. To do so select "Edit" in the upper right hand corner, and use the control panel across the top of the page to write, edit, format, and insert images, videos, links and other widgets. To learn more you can click help at the top of the page or watch short video tutorials.

Please don’t worry about perfection of formatting or other minor details - we will rely on the community to fine-tune as we go. We want to gain your insight and hear your voice. We encourage posting of additional photos of Terry throughout the document. Entry and editing of details like career history, articles and presentations and other facts are appreciated. We do ask that the content of other people’s personal comments and testimonies not be modified. In short, we want to participate with others in our community in the same spirit of respectful listening and mutual support that Terry exemplified in building a document celebrating Terry’s life and work. Please join us!

Terry Lee Gompert was born Oct. 29, 1944, to Bernard and Dorothy (Kautz) Gompert in Scottsbluff. On Aug. 2, 1970, he married Constance Johnson in Newman Grove. Four children were born to them, Saul, Kate, Jenny and Julie.

Terry graduated from Colorado State University and received his master’s degree from UNL in Lincoln. He served with the International Voluntary Service in Laos from 1966 to 1968. He was involved in Extension Service in Colorado. They raised hogs for seven years near Mitchell. Terry continued his Extension Service in Logan and McPherson Counties in Nebraska and was involved with Knox County Extension since 1983.

Terry hosted small group Bible studies for adults and youth in his home and attended Plum Valley Bible Church in Center.

He was involved in holistic management training and enjoyed working with his herd of cattle.

He is survived by his wife, Connie Gompert; his children, Saul and Jenn Gompert of Center, Kate and John McNutt of Silver City, Iowa, Jenny and Kevin Harrold of Hamilton, Mont., and Julie Gompert of Lincoln; 14 grandchildren, Peter, Elizabeth, Charles, Luke, and expecting number 14 grandbaby Gompert, Joshua and Andrew McNutt, Noah, Constance, Lily, Joseph and Suzanna Harrold and Nathan and David Gizaw; brothers Kurt and Sandy Gompert of Mitchell, Henry and Sue Gompert of Morrill; mother Dorothy Gompert of Mitchell; and his mother-in-law, Lorraine Johnson of Newman Grove.
He was preceded in death by his father, Bernard Gompert, and his father-in-law, Harlan Johnson.

Impacts on People: How Terry Changed Our Lives

"Terry was forever kind, generous, and supportive, as well as inspiring and probing. By asking others for advice, Terry really stimulated some deep thought and examination of one's assumptions. He was a great teacher because of this, and got people involved. He volunteered to become a board member of our new Soil Carbon Coalition in 2008, and helped us set our holistic goal and much else." Peter Donovan, Enterprise, Oregon

"Terry and I have had the opportunity to work together on a number of various projects, from grazing management to the Grassfed Exchange event. Being the type A personality that he was and I am, we didn't always see everything the same way but we ALWAYS came to an amicable conclusion and agreement. It takes folks like Terry to challenge our own paradigms and I am better for having known and worked with him. The grassfed industry has suffered a great loss! There will be people impacted by Terry's loss that never had the pleasure of meeting him because his impact has been so vast and so broad. The battle Terry fought is a battle worth fighting and we need to continue the fight!" Joey Jones, NE

“Terry was smart, generous, open and kind without limit. In the time I knew Terry, he always amazed me with his curiosity, drive and success in uncovering and expanding deep, often deceptively simple truths about effective ways to think, farm and ranch. His work improved life in too many ways to count for people on the land, their communities, the livestock, and the communities we grow food and environmental services for. At the hardest time in my life, Terry was always available to talk and listen, and gave me exactly the advice and kindness I needed at any given moment. He and Connie opened their home to me, his networks of friends, colleagues and students, and his enormous storehouse of knowledge and critical thinking. Because of Terry’s development and research into innovations like using raw milk on pastures, (as just one example) I saw surprising, cost effective increases in productivity and forage quality. I miss Terry enormously, and know that the people in our community are going to have to work overtime, think harder, be kinder and be even more generous to maintain the multi-continental momentum that Terry had sparked and was so good at maintaining.” Abe Collins, St. Albans, VT

What a privilege it has been to have known Terry as friend and mentor for the past twenty-eight years. His passing on into eternity to be with his Lord and Savior is a
victory for him and we would not dare to ask for him back, but, I will miss him as we all will. He has impacted our lives as only a few people can. He has shown us how to attain
goals we only dared to dream about. Terry has helped me to question why I am doing something, and to not just consider how it will affect my bottom line. Now I think about
how it will impact the environment around me. How it will have an effect upon my community and how sustainable is the change I am about to make. He has shown me
how to be a steward of the gifts God has given each of us. He has shown me how to be unselfish and to share what we have learned with others so that we, all, together
can make this world a better place in which to live. He has shown me how to be a part of the solution, not a part of the problem. Because of Terry, We have learned to rely less on
man's so called wisdom and more upon the ever expanding understanding of how magnificent of a world our God has created for us to have dominion over and yet the responsibility that is carried with it. We thank God for giving Terry to us all. We thank Connie and family for sharing Terry's time with us. May we all become the servants to our fellow man that Terry has showed how to be" Wayne Rasmussen NE

Radio Tribute to Terry: Kirk Gadzia

There is a program on a local radio station that did a tribute to our buddy Terry. Matt Fischer the auther of the program is a local who grew up neighbors to Terry and Connie. Maybe that is why this is a little special. Thought maybe you may enjoy it as well.


I saw this on the Kit Pharo discussion group and listened to the program.
We miss you Terry. Kirk Gadzia

Subject Author Replies Views Last Message
No Comments

Links to Terry's Passions, Lines of Inquiry and Discoveries
Holistic Management
Why Holistic Management? A Webinar by Terry Gompert. (Loud noise at beginning resolves quickly.)

N. Dakota Rancher Builds Biological Capital: How Gene Goven achieved a 3.45 X increase in stocking rate.

Gene Goven: My 20-Year Journey of Holistic management. Powerpoint presentation

Integrating Livestock and Crops: A presentation by Terry Gompert on Holistic Management, Grazing Planning, Cropping and More

Planned Grazing
Graze Tall: Neil Dennis. Will Sales, a farmer from Wales, talks about his visit with Neil

Neil Dennis Talks about his Planned Grazing: 1st of 10. (Neil has a lot to share!)

Grazing Tall: Benefits of Planned Grazing, Abe Collins

Grassfed Beef
Grassfed Beef: A Webinar with Terry Gompert
Eat Wild:"The # 1 Site for Grassfed Food and Facts."

Soil Health
Must-See Presentations about Soil Health and Practical Strategies for Achieving it from the Burleigh County Soil Conservation District

Milk on the Land

Columbia Daily Tribune: Farmers turn to Milk for Fields: Studies Show Richer Soil After Dousings
Finally...a non-controversial use for raw milk...as fertilizer for crops!

Cocktail Cover Cropping
Building Soil Health, Powerpoint by Jay Fuhrer

Forage Chains
Hay and Forage Grower: A perfect pair - grazing oats and turnips, by Anne Behling
SGF: Finishing Cattle in hot summer areas require summer annuals

Soil Carbon
Carbon That Counts, by Dr. Christine Jones
Amazing Carbon: Dr. Christine Jones website, with an impressive range of insightful articles and presentations about soil carbon - its value and how to manage for its increase.


Refractometer Readings - What are your Brix levels?

Terry advocated use of a refractometer to gauge sucrose and mineral levels in forage plant sap. For example, see Terry's webinar "Grassfed Beef" beginning at time 35:40. Some producers report improved animal performance when grazing is concentrated at the times of day when forage energy is typically highest - between noon and midnight. Others have reported increased Brix measurements as their management led to improved soil quality. We welcome reports from producers and researchers about their use of the refractometer for monitoring forage quality, and how that has changed their management and livestock performance. What is your monitoring method? Which parts of the plants do you measure? How many garlic presses have you broken in the process? What are the differences in readings at different times of the day?

"In 2003, Teddy Yandow and Abe Collins began experimenting with concentrating strip grazing in the afternoon and evening, instead of parceling out grass evenly throughout the day. Within three days of beginning this, they saw an average increase in milk production of five pounds of milk per cow. Informal monitoring through the years with a refractometer has confirmed the hunch that led to the management change, as afternoon and evening measurements consistently give higher readings than morning measurements. Abe finally built a clamp-based forage-press for juice extraction, as the repeated destruction of garlic presses was not contributing to domestic harmony. They caution that they observe the principal without being dogmatic and forcing the animals to swelter during hot periods. Given the choice, during hot spells they'll give the herd the largest grazing allotment in the late-afternoon/evening. The day is cooling off then, and plant sugar levels are just beginning the march downward from their peak, as opposed to the early morning, when the plant is just beginning its daily miracle-work of transforming air and water into sugar. The cattle have adapted well to the change, and seem not to mind the rationing that involves a small-morning slug of grass to tide them over, followed by luxurious "cream and trample" allotments with no pressure to "clean up" beginning about noon. Refractometer monitoring has also influenced their typical spring management - fast and light grazing - during fast growth and washy conditions. "In addition to 'keeping up with the grass,' we play by the plants' rules that suggest light grazing after 3.5 leaves and before flowering to trigger strong tillering by cool-season perennials. Refractometer readings are also at their lowest point in the spring, so we want to make sure that we get as much dry matter and plant sugar into the stock as possible to better balance abundant protein levels and keep them well-fed. Afternoon/evening focused-grazing - fast and light - in the spring gives the stock maximum selectivity with the least amount of work, and afternoon heat is rarely a problem."

Soil Carbon Coalition Map of Soil Carbon Changes (Terry co-founded the Soil Carbon Coalition)

Click here for a full-size view of the Map of Soil Carbon Changes at the Soil Carbon Coalition Website

Do you have soil monitoring data from your farm or ranch that shows change in soil carbon levels? We would like to post in on the Map of Soil Carbon Changes.
Soil Carbon Data Submission Form

Would you like to enter the Soil Carbon Challenge, a local-global contest to measure how quickly land managers can increase soil carbon?
Read about the Soil Carbon Challenge here.

Dung Beetles
ATTRA: Dung Beetles in the Pasture Ecosystem
Managing Wholes: Dung Beetles and Their Effects on Soils

Below, Dr. Pat Richardson describes the "poop cycle," and the role of dung beetles. Caution, this video describes actual biological processes.

Terry's Quotes

History of Educational and Networking Events Terry Organized - And What We Learned From Them

2007 Ultra High Stock Density Grazing Event: Terry Gompert, Chad Peterson, Neil Dennis and Allan Savory

Blog about Peterson Ranch, Newport, NE. Terry and Chad shared many ideas over the years.

My name is Mae, and Terry was my instructor and friend through 2008 until his passing. He encouraged and challenged me to become a Certified Educator via Holistic Management. Terry believed very strongly in supporting and bringing in the next generation into farming and ranching and I will always be indebted to him for instilling passion and critical thinking into my life and my adventures in agriculture. Please peruse the blog listed above to see what we are up to.

Presentations, Articles, Videos by or about Terry

Things Terry Has Learned From Producers: A Powerpoint presentation at the Kansas Center for Rural Affairs

Ideas that Make Money For Livestock Producers: Bud Williams Marketing, the Bud Box, Holistic Management, Grazing Crops, Keyline, etc.

Microsoft PowerPoint - Ideas that Make Money for Livestock Producers -

Mob Grazing, Part 1: A video webinar with Terry Gompert
Mob Grazing, Part 2: A video webinar with Terry Gompert

High Plains Journal: Holistic Management Can Help Improve Grazing Land, By Jennifer Brown
Country Folks: Winter Gets a Greenup from Nebraska's Pasture Prophet, Terry Gompert


Our Discoveries: Lessons We Have Learned that Terry Would Want the World to Know About

Paul Brown talks about innovative cropping and grazing work in Burleigh County, ND
"We have not reached the plateau yet, and I don't believe that anyone knows where the plateau is."
"We've cut our fertilizer use by 90% and our herbicide use by 75%."

Brown Farm, Burleigh, ND. from SC-NRCS & ESRI-SC Partnership on Vimeo.

Miller Ranch, Burleigh Co., ND from SC-NRCS & ESRI-SC Partnership on Vimeo.

Blackleg Ranch, Burleigh Co., ND from SC-NRCS & ESRI-SC Partnership on Vimeo.

Bauer Farm, Burleigh Co., ND. from SC-NRCS & ESRI-SC Partnership on Vimeo.

Menoken Farms, Burleigh Co., ND from SC-NRCS & ESRI-SC Partnership on Vimeo.

Richter Farm, Burleigh, ND from SC-NRCS & ESRI-SC Partnership on Vimeo.

Soil Health Video Interviews with Pioneering Burleigh County Soilbuilders

Links to tools: Building Healthy People, Communities and Land

Links to farms, ranches and organizations that Terry Influenced

Soil Carbon Coalition: Put the Carbon Back Where it Belongs
Holistic Management International website

Nebraska Sustainable Agriculture Society

Savory Institute website

Stockman Grassfarmer

Acres USA magazine and website

Practical Farmers of Iowa

Bible Answers