Jymmy Kay Cox is as much at home astride a horse as many people are in their favorite easy chair.
Born in Ruidoso, N.M., Jymmy Kay and her family spent summers in the mountain resort town of south central New Mexico with her father as a quarter horse jockey, and winters in Spicewood, where she grew up on the Paleface Ranch, home of the Red Brangus breed.
“I grew up on a horse. I’ve been on a horse since I was eight days old,” Jymmy Kay admits. “We were either at the racetrack or at a rodeo or at the ranch.”
She parlayed her experience on a horse into a professional career at age 17 with the Women’s Professional Rodeo Association, the oldest women’s organized sporting association in the world that she also served as its president for four years.
Although she’ll admit that “I spend a lot of time on a horse,” she doesn’t limit herself to equine endeavors.
Jymmy Kay moved to Gonzales 14 years ago – her daughters Justyn and Jayd graduated from Gonzales High School – and has been a real estate agent with Breitschopf-Cooper about 12 years.
She’s also the host of a show on RFD-TV called “Women’s Pro Rodeo Today,” now in its fifth year which airs Wednesday nights, an re-airs Thursday mornings and Sunday nights.
When she’s not training horses and giving riding lessons to Gonzales girls, Jymmy Kay serves as a motivational speaker, teaching the power of faith, positive thinking and mental toughness.
“[I do] a little bit of everything. I sell real estate, record four or five shows, then I do horses and I run title for a land company. I do not believe in boredom, so I keep as busy as I can,” she says.
Yet, she demonstrates her humility with the disclaimer, “I don’t even know why they picked me [to be featured as a 2011 Women in the Workplace].”
But her philosophy on life and success is simple and straightforward.
“I just always ask God what it is He wants me to do, so it seems to make things very easy. I just ask Him to help me want what He wants me to do,” Jymmy Kay says.
“And I surround myself with really good people. I think that’s one of the most important things I could say. Whatever career choice that you may make, find people you admire who are successful, and hang out with them. It’s true, you soar with eagles. The more professional and dedicated type of people you hang out with or you associate with, you have to rise to their level to keep up.
“I’m a firm believer in learning from other people’s success and their mistakes,” she reveals. “Find whomever you think is the best in their field, whoever you have respect for, and follow them and learn from them and don’t be afraid to work really hard.
A lot of [the secrets to success] is work ethic. Young people need to realize the importance of work. We live in a society of instant gratification. You hit a button and you find out what you want to know. A lot of our young people don’t know that there’s a lot of things that it’s not instant gratification. You have to do a lot of blood, sweat and tears for nothing just to learn before it starts paying off. But then when it does, it does for a lifetime,” Jymmy Kay says.
“There’s a lot of things you can’t learn from a computer. Especially in a place like where we live. People just like Peewee Ploeger, people who have been here all their lives who have such knowledge about not only where we live, but about cattle and about the industry and about the land. I hope our youth don’t take that for granted, because that’s the kind of stuff you can’t get anywhere else.
“And don’t ever quit learning, because I learn something every day,” Jymmy Kay admits. “Don’t ever think you’re too old to learn. Always know you need to keep learning and you need to teach whenever you can.”
Included in Jymmy Kay’s learning and life experience are several occasions when she sang the National Anthem at the National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas, and a pro rodeo tour to Afghanistan to visit the troops four years ago.
“That goes back to just asking God to help you want what you’re supposed to have, ‘cause there’s things I’ve gotten do that I never thought I’d get to do. And the Afghanistan trip was one of the coolest things I’ve done.”
Jymmy Kay’s years as a motivational speaker kick in as she summarizes her philosophy in bullet-point fashion:
“Trust in God, trust in yourself, dare to dream, surround yourself with good people. Learn how to win and how to learn from your losses. And don’t dwell on losses. These days we think people don’t keep score, but they do. Life is a competition – whether it’s in an arena or in an office – so learn how to turn losses into victories.”