John Jacob Harder was born November 27, 1902, near Kahlotus, Washington. He was the son of Jacob and Annine Harder, prominent Washington livestock pioneers. John Harder’s father purchased a ranch 12 miles east of Ritzville, Washington in 1906. On this place, Mr. Harder dedicated his whole life to the cattle industry, until retirement. Through his love for the ranch, he built and maintained a very sizeable and profitable business. Despite the loss of his right arm at the age of 11, there was not anything in the life of a rancher he could not do. Mr. Harder proved that a handicap cannot stop you from success. Mr. Harder passed away June 21, 1984. August 9 of this same year, the Harder family celebrated their 100 year centennial. Mr. Harder was married to Ellen Rosler, of Spokane, in 1937. Mr. and Mrs. Harder had two children, John William and Judy. The family is carrying on Mr. Harder’s dream of commercial Hereford ranching.
The John Jacob Harder Memorial Scholarship is for a junior or senior student studying beef cattle production or nutrition, and dedicated to the preservation and continuation of beef production as a private enterprise. Eligible students must be U.S. citizens from the state of Washington, preferably raised on a working cattle ranch. He/she must maintain a 2.5 G.P.A.