| Rodeo star; Rancher|
| Joe Louis Shoulders Jr.|
| James A. Shoulders |
May 13, 1928 (1928-05-13)
Henryetta, Okmulgee County,Oklahoma
June 20, 2007, Henryetta, Oklahoma, United States
Sharon Shoulders (m. 1947)
Jim Shoulders Wikipedia
James A. Shoulders (May 13, 1928 – June 20, 2007) was an American professional rodeo cowboy and rancher. He is commemorated at the ProRodeo Hall of Fame and at the time of his death, was the most successful contestant in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA). Known as the 'Babe Ruth of rodeo', Shoulders was a spokesperson for a number of commercial products such as Miller Lite, Justin Boots and Wrangler Jeans. He was born in Tulsa, Oklahoma and died in Henryetta, Oklahoma. He was of English descent.
Shoulders won his first bull riding competition in Oilton, Oklahoma at the age of fourteen. He competed until his retirement due to injury at the age of forty-two. His success at competitions included:World All-Around Champion Cowboy Championships (1949, 1956, 1957, 1958, 1959).World Bull Rider Championships. (1951 and 1954 to 1959).World Bareback Rider Championships. (1950 and 1956 to 1958).
Shoulders was the first competitor to win all three events (bareback, bull riding and all-round) at the National FInals Rodeo (NFR).
From his rodeo career earnings, Shoulders bought a 400-acre (1.6 km2) ranch in Oklahoma where he raised livestock. He owned Tornado, a rodeo bull who threw 200 riders over 14 years. According to Frank Boggs, an Oklahoman sports writer and columnist, Shoulders bought Tornado in South Texas when he was three years old. In 1967, Freckles Brown rode Tornado. Shoulders actually maintained several quality bucking stock, which included the famed "weather" bulls Cyclone, Hurricane, Twister, and Tornado.
On the basis of his rodeo success, Shoulders took work in advertising. His manager was Billy Martin, a former New York Yankees manager. He made advertisements for products such as Miller Lite beer, jeans (helping to design the Wrangler Jeans 13MWZ 'cowboy cut' jeans); and Justin boots.
Shoulders is honored in many rodeo halls of fame. Shoulders was an early participant in the American Cowboy Culture Association, which holds the annual National Cowboy Symposium and Celebration each September in Lubbock, Texas.
In 1947, Shoulders married Sharon and they had four children. Shoulders' son, Marvin Paul Shoulders, has also competed professionally in rodeo sports.