Williams throws hat into state political ring

Paul Collins
Posted 4/18/24

NIOBRARA - Native Wyoming rancher J.D. Williams is throwing his hat into the political arena with his eyes firmly set on Wyoming House of Representative District Two.

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Williams throws hat into state political ring


NIOBRARA - Native Wyoming rancher J.D. Williams is throwing his hat into the political arena with his eyes firmly set on Wyoming House of Representative District Two.

Williams originally hails from Saratoga, Wyoming, but he has made a name for himself locally. Niobrara County residents know him as a rancher and a cowboy who has spent the last three decades guiding cows through their annual production cycle. Williams believes that the cowboy and ranching professions have sufficiently prepared him to make the leap into Wyoming politics.

"I have been a rancher and a cowboy my whole life," Williams told the Herald. "Historically, that is what much of the Wyoming legislature has been composed of because of our agricultural roots. Those men and women really established this state we love so much. They made it what it is today. That's a heritage I share. Ranching in Wyoming lays a background of common sense and character. I feel like that is what's missing in today's politics and that is what I can bring to the table."

In addition to a skill set acquired in cowboy and ranching work, Williams also possesses a fair amount of experience in the managerial world. In 2000, Williams became the manager of Four Three Ranch, a ranching operation located in northern Niobrara County and 40 miles away from Lusk. Williams took the reins of management at the ranch when it was sold by the Pfister brothers to Tetrad Corp. While carrying out his managerial responsibilities, Williams found that much of his days were spent on horseback alongside of families who live and work at the ranch. According to Williams, his time at the Four Three Ranch taught him to lend an ear to the experts. If elected, the veteran rancher intends on applying that lesson to the legislature.

"In my position as a manager, I have always ascribed to the theory that I am not always the expert in the room," said Williams. "I cannot pretend to be an expert on every topic. I believe this is a listening job. You just go and find the best expert and recruit their expertise. That depends upon your ability to communicate and form relationships. In the legislature, with a couple of phone calls, I can have any number of experts in House District Two who can weigh in on whatever issue we're dealing with at the time. Really I think that's what a good legislator does. As a local representative, my experts would be local. I find those more reliable and more relatable to local issues and House District Two."

There are several issues Williams wishes to tackle if he is successful in his bid for District Two. Mental health questions, infrastructure problems, property taxes, federal government overreach, and spending are all on his list. These topics, says Williams, are not ones that people are eager to broach. The candidate, however, feels that it is necessary to discuss them and several if Wyoming is to have a bright future.

"Many of the topics that need to be addressed are difficult and costly ones that are not going to score you political points because they are heavy and they are hard to talk about," said Williams. "But they are true. If you want to help your neighbor, tell them the truth. If you want to help yourself, you tell them what they want to hear."