Joel Cowley leaving Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo; new CEO and president named

Joel Cowley (Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo)

Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo CEO and President Joel Cowley is leaving the organization after 15 years.

“I am incredibly thankful to the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo Executive Committee for the opportunity to serve this organization for the past 15 years, seven as president and CEO,” said Cowley. “Our volunteers and staff have reached incredible milestones over this period and, with the continued support of the community, I am confident that the best is yet to come.”

Cowley says he will be pursing a new opportunity in the agricultural industry.

“While I will remain a lifelong supporter of the Rodeo and its mission of promoting agriculture and supporting education, I will be pursuing an opportunity that has a direct impact on the agricultural industry,” Cowley said. “In doing so, I hope to provide the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo with an even better story to tell about advancements in the critically important field of agriculture.”

Cowley’s last day in his role of president and CEO is May 22.

Chris Boleman (Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo)

Chief Mission Officer Chris Boleman, Ph.D., has been promoted to the role of president and CEO. Dr. Boleman has served in the role of chief mission officer since August, and prior to that, beginning in 2017, he served as executive director of the Agricultural Educational Competitions and Exhibits Division.

“I appreciate the confidence that the Rodeo Executive Committee has in me to lead such an impactful organization that is aligned with my personal passions,” said Boleman. “I am very grateful to Joel Cowley, who not only has been a tremendous leader of our organization but is also a trusted friend and mentor. I look forward to the challenge of following his legacy.”

Dr. Boleman will assume the role of president and CEO Monday, May 25, 2020.