Anne Marie Moore was recently awarded the "Top Wrangler" distinction by the Arizona Cattle Growers Association. ACGA President Billy Elkins presented Moore with the award.

The Arizona Cattle Growers Association (ACGA) has honored Dos Cabezas’ Anne Marie Moore with their “Top Wrangler” award. The award recognizes the ACGA member who brings in the most new members.

“She’s tireless in what she does… she’s done a phenomenal job for us,” said ACGA president Billy Elkins, who presented Moore with the award. The Snowflake rancher says the ACGA’s membership has nearly tripled during the last two years, with much thanks due to Moore, who serves as the Membership Chair. Elkins said, “(Moore and her husband Larry) are integral parts of our organization.”

Moore acted as editor for the association’s promotional brochure, worked with ACGA’s county representatives to encourage membership, and designed products for the organization. Elkins and Moore believe her work on the informational brochure was especially impactful.

“Hands-on communication, something they can see and hold, is so crucial,” Moore said.

The ACGA serves as a legislative advocacy group for cattle ranchers in state government, protecting their rights, land. and interests.

They focus on reducing restrictions, maintaining good trade, nurturing graze lands, staunching predation, preserving branding, and giving back to rural education.

The association also provides scholarships for agriculture students, funds agricultural research, and promotes ranching among young people.

“We’re pushing for young families to get involved and have a voice,” said Elkins. “In the past it was difficult to get young people out because of the costs. Now we are raising money to sponsor those younger people… it is a very bright future.”

While Elkins replaced all but one chair when he started his term last year, he kept Anne Marie in place. He admires her work ethic and willingness to work on anything she is assigned.

Activism in the realm of ranching is quite natural for Moore. She spent her childhood in Laveen, Arizona, a small town south of Phoenix.

Now, half of the village falls within Phoenix city limits and supermarkets are popping up amidst the farmland.

Her father, Mark Accomazzo, was a cotton farmer and cattle rancher, and her mother, Betty Accomazzo, was also highly involved in the industry. Mrs. Accomazzo is enshrined in the National Cowgirl Hall of Fame, and their website says this about her:

“The daughter of German immigrants, Betty made a significant contribution to the preservation of Western history with the publication of a five-volume anthology of stories told by pioneer families of Arizona.”

As a part of her efforts to encapsulate ranching history, Betty founded the Pioneer Stockmen Association, which endeavors to chronicle the triumphs and trials of Arizona pioneers who braved the southwest by themselves.

As a young adult, Moore wished to continue her family’s history in agriculture and was offered a job as a 4H extension agent in Pinal County. However, she did not want to leave her then boyfriend, and now husband, Larry Moore Jr., whose family has ranched in Rucker Canyon for over a century. The two were married in 1974, shortly after Anne Marie graduated from Arizona State University, and started ranching together. They joined the ACGA the same year and have stayed active members ever since.

The couple continued to operate Rafter X Ranch until 2008, when they moved to their current operation in Dos Cabezas: Rancho Hacienda.

Moore said the move was a semi-retirement for her and Larry, downsizing from 1,000 to 50 head of cattle. Despite their reduced herd, the Moores are active in protecting the industry for the future.

“We’re very dedicated to the cattle industry,” said Anne Marie. “It’s our livelihood so we have to take care of it.”

In addition to their activism on a state level, the Moores are very involved locally.

Larry Moore Jr. is a 2009 inductee of the Willcox Cowboy Hall of Fame and a longtime board member for the Rucker Elementary School District.

The two have also contributed to the Quarterback Club, the Rex Allen Museum and Cowboy Hall of Fame, and the Arizona Cowbelles.

Last year, Anne Marie won Cattlewoman of the Year from the Arizona Cowbelles for her contributions to the industry.