A hazy mist still hangs over the pasture on this East Texas morning, and the tall grass is wet with dew. The quiet beauty of this moment takes the breath away. But there is work to be done. The Tejas team is already busy building miles of fence. We’ve joined them to meet the newest member of this extraordinary team, Kip Winters.
Meeting Kip Winters
As we pull up to the fence line where a crew is working, we see a tall man in a cowboy hat and starched shirt giving directions to a man operating a backhoe. He notices us and heads over with a beaming smile. This is Kip Winters, a jovial fellow with a light-hearted, disarming sense of humor and plenty of Texas charm. But get him talking fences, and he turns serious, as he displays a range of knowledge cultivated over decades of work in the business.
TA: Who is Kip Winters? KW: Well, I grew up in a farming-ranching family near Paris, Texas, which led to an agriculture science degree from Sam Houston State University. I was an agriculture science teacher for eight years before getting started in the fence business.
TA: Tell us more… KW: I have 25 years of experience in the fence industry – 10 years of commercial experience, and 15 years in the game fence Industry. My welding background in the commercial (multi-family) business led to my involvement in commercial fencing in 1995. My background in the ranch and game fence industry involved fencing sales and construction in 15 different states, from California to New York to Florida. My knowledge, experience, and resources were used in the startup of Tejas Ranch & Game Fence.
TA: What brought you to start working with Tejas? KW: I worked as a consultant when Tejas was starting up. As Tejas has grown, evolved, and continues to grow, there has been a need to expand sales and production. My experience in the industry led to this new position at Tejas.
TA:How did you meet John? KW: I met John in 1994 when he was starting Payne Metal Works, Inc. in Ennis, Texas. The company I was working for purchased a trailer from (Payne Metal Works). After using it, we went back and purchased another one because of the quality and service.
TA:What’s your favorite thing about ranch life? KW: My favorite thing about ranch life is just being outdoors, as my job title “Outdoor Enthusiast” will attest. I love to hunt and fish and particularly enjoy getting to travel around to different ranches throughout the US and see the different terrains and features each ranch has to offer. That is therapy to me.
TA:What’s the best part of life? KW: My wife Danielle and I have two children. Our daughter Morgan is 24 and our son Mitchel is 21. We enjoy being outdoors as much as possible and particularly love spending time on the lake, boating, and fishing.
TA:What do you most look forward to in this new partnership with John and Tejas? KW: John and I were friends for many years. When he started Tejas and he and I brainstormed together and there was always a possibility of me joining the team. I’m glad to now have joined the team and I just enjoy being around John. He makes people smarter. He’s constantly learning and not only sharing what he learns but inspiring us to learn more right alongside him. I look forward to seeing Tejas grow but also growing with it. I look forward to the new relationships that I will gain, and I look forward to being a part of Tejas’ future. It’s going to be an incredible new chapter in my life.
The dew has now dissipated as the temperature rises, but we don’t want to leave this beautiful place. The heat is well worth the price of admission to see the rolling hills and animals starting to gather in the shade of 150-year-old live oaks. The crew continues on in a masterful synchronization that can only come with many hours spent working in tandem.