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Wyoming FFA Continues Strong Representation, Advocacy Efforts

Written by Addysen Rosner

As 2017 neared an end, the Wyoming FFA concluded their busy season of traveling and developing their leadership abilities. From traveling countless miles to interacting with the nine Wyoming State FFA Officers through chapter visits, Wyoming FFA members have had an eventful year full of premier leadership, personal growth and career success and will continue to improve throughout 2018.

One of many members’ biggest debuts of 2017 was the National FFA Convention in October. Members from across the state gathered at the 90th National FFA Convention held in Indianapolis, Ind. to proudly represent our state in various Career Development Events and Leadership Development Events. Although the week was filled with both joy and discomfort, Wyoming FFA members did an outstanding job representing our organization finishing the week with seven gold emblem teams, 21 individuals receiving their American FFA Degree and two individuals finishing in the top three in the National Agriscience Fair.

Brye Williams a member of the Buffalo Bill FFA Chapter competed on Wyoming’s National FFA Horse Evaluation Team and shared, “It’s cool to say we did that well at a national competition,” after she and her team worked for hours to represent Wyoming, earning ninth place overall in the nation as a team.

After a brief pause to do some rest and recovery, 600 members met in Douglas in November for the annual FIRE (Finding Inspiration and Reaching Excellence) and CPC (Chapter Presidents Conference) events.

Freshmen attending FIRE had the ability to ignite their passion for leading and strived to promote personal growth, learning how to become an impactful leader in their communities and steps they need to take to leave a lasting impact as they begin their journey in the FFA organization.

Maddie Maes of the Frontier FFA Chapter stated, “The 2017 FIRE conference was spectacular. I was able to seek out new horizons and meet other people. I was so shy in front of a lot of people at once, but FIRE really changed that for me.”

To tie together all they learned, FIRE and CPC members listened to inspirational speaker Joe Fingerhut as he shared his adventures around the world and the importance of always working towards your goals.

Chapter officers who took part in CPC had the opportunity to learn how to continue to grow and developed our organization as premier leaders within their chapter. Officers shared their input on changes they felt should be made to the Wyoming FFA Association by creating resolutions on items of business brought forth by Wyoming FFA members. They also learned how to unite as a state to allow our members and organization continue to flourish in a work shop hosted by the Wyoming State Officers and learned how important it is to enjoy what you are doing and set goals you wish to achieve from guest speaker Joe Fingerhut.

Bethany Ocheskey from the High Plains FFA attended CPC for their chapter and shared, “CPC was a great learning opportunity for new and returning officers. It showed us what committee work was like and strengthened our abilities as individuals and teams. It also showed us the morals and values the FFA stands for and taught us to strive to achieve that.”

All throughout the year, Wyoming FFA State Officers have worked hard to unite the state and traveled from all corners of the state to complete their chapter visits. The nine state officers have traveled in groups of two or three to each chapter within the state. This allows officers to share their leadership abilities with other chapters, learn how unique each chapter is, and spend time with the members that make the Wyoming FFA so successful.

Wyoming FFA State Sentinel Taylor West stated, “Chapter visits have been an amazing experience, allowing us to get to know members across the state. I have loved getting to know members and grow alongside them this fall.”

State officers tackle Wyoming’s 53 chapters by dividing into groups traveling to their assigned chapters and completing workshops throughout the day which teach members how to implement new and valuable life skills then spend the evenings with members within the chapters.

As the Wyoming FFA Association enters the new year, we can expect members to continue to work hard and apply all they learned this fall to help better our organization, put forth countless hours to be premier leaders in their home and community and implement the values we hold so near to us in their daily life. As we concluded 2017, the Wyoming FFA Association and its members look forward to the year ahead to continue to advocate for our states agriculture industry and proudly represent our organization.