Brandon Callis (Photo courtesy)
started Aug. 8 at the college, just days before students were set to return.
Callis, who will also serve as an agriculture instructor, said Thursday while Redlands' livestock judging program was in good shape, he had a plan for his team from the outset.
"We try to install in our kids the importance of morals and ethics - doing the right thing the right way," Callis
"That's what I'm going to focus on."
grew up in south Texas, about 40 miles outside Houston.
dad working as a 4-H Extension agent and his
mom an assistant principal, both livestock and education were part of his
life from the start, he
"I was always active in 4-H, FFA - it was something I always loved," Callis
decided to turn that love into a career.
After working as a judge at Connors State College, Callis transferred to Texas A&M University, where he was part of the national judging team.
After earning his bachelor's degree at Texas A&M, he moved to Kansas State, where he served as an assistant coach and pursued a master's degree, he said.
Callis is currently pursuing a Ph.D. through Texas A&M.
wife, Kelly, the coach moved to Blinn College
, located in Brenham, Texas.
won national titles in 2010, 2011 and 2012, and Callis
was named National Junior College
Coach of the Year in 2011.
While working at Blinn, Callis said he became well-acquainted with Redlands' livestock judging team.
After more than three years of trying to recruit against the El Reno college - and many times not succeeding, Callis
jumped at the opportunity to take on Redlands' judging program.
"My wife is from Yukon - we've been trying to get back this way for a little while now," he
Students will arrive Monday and the team's first practice is set for Tuesday, Callis
The team's first competitive opportunities will be in October - the Tulsa State Fair and State Fair of Texas.
Both are unique because they offer freshmen contests, something many other events do not, Callis
"It's good that they get a chance to compete and then we move on to the sophomores," he
While change can be intimidating for students, Callis
was excited to hit the ground running with his
"I've always learned that's the best way - with big change - to let them do what they know how to do," he