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Iowa FFA Holds 91st Annual Conference

Iowa Degree: for FFA
5cb8976d9121e Iowa Degree: Front to back (left to right): Payton Erritt, Hannah Rees, Samantha Alphs, Morgan Casteson, Cassidy Lambert, and Joel Lambert, Ben Carlson, Landon Pontius, Ryan Jondle, and Chad Stewart. Absent was Alex Pudenz.

Iowa Degree: Front to back (left to right): Payton Erritt, Hannah Rees, Samantha Alphs, Morgan Casteson, Cassidy Lambert, and Joel Lambert, Ben Carlson, Landon Pontius, Ryan Jondle, and Chad Stewart. Absent was Alex Pudenz.

Delegates for FFA
5cb8976d9121e Delegates: Chloe Hicks and Chyann Hicks

Delegates: Chloe Hicks and Chyann Hicks

Star over Iowa for FFA
5cb8976d9121e Star Over Iowa photo: Mr. Brian Johnson, Steven Kehoe, Benjamin Carlson, Jennifer Carlson, and Jim Carlson

Star Over Iowa photo: Mr. Brian Johnson, Steven Kehoe, Benjamin Carlson, Jennifer Carlson, and Jim Carlson

State Winner
5cb8976d9121e Morgan: Morgan Castenson state winner in Diversified Horticulture Proficiency Award.

Morgan: Morgan Castenson state winner in Diversified Horticulture Proficiency Award.

Print Version

Ames, Iowa--FFA members across Iowa celebrated success when they gathered for the 91st Iowa FFA Leadership Conference on April 14-16th at Iowa State University’s Hilton Coliseum in Ames, Iowa. The Iowa FFA State Leadership Conference is the 5th largest of its kind in the National FFA Organization.   There were over 6,600 members and guests present this year which set an all-time record for attendance for the third straight year with more than 236 FFA Chapters present.

“Just One” the theme for this year’s convention, embraces more than 91 years of FFA traditions while looking forward to the organization’s future.  FFA members in attendance have a passion for agriculture.  Local members who attended this year were:  Samantha Alphs, Allison Bethel, Benjamin Carlson, Morgan Castenson, Breyton Cline, Kyleigh Erritt, Payton Erritt, Chloe Hicks, Chyann Hicks, Majesta Jordison, Carson Lambert, Cassidy Lambert, Joel Lambert, Blake Peterson, Landon Pontius, Hannah Rees, Chad Stewart, Raven Thomas, Hailey Tuel, and Haylee Welter.

The annual conference provided agricultural education students the opportunity to participate in Career Development Event competitions, be recognized for accomplishments in events during the past year, become inspired by motivational speakers, interact with college and business professionals, and develop leadership skills. Chapter delegates and Iowa FFA Officers will also conduct the annual business session to make decisions for the student-run Iowa FFA Association.

The chapter won the Ambassador Award for the North Central District by donating the most funds toward the Iowa FFA Foundation.  Ben Carlson and Joel Lambert accepted the honor for the chapter.  Chloe Hicks and Chyann Hicks served as the chapter’s official voting delegates during the business session on Monday, April 15th. 

Proficiency Awards:  Three members were recognized for their efforts with their SAE programs on stage.  Morgan Castenson was the state champion in Diversified Horticulture.  Ryan Jondle was second in Ag. Mechanics (repair).  Carson Lambert was second in Forage Production.  Breyton Cline was second in Diversified Crop Production.  Benjamin Carlson earned second place gold in Diversified Livestock Production.   Hannah Rees was second in state with Sheep Production.  Allison Bethel earned second place with Home and Community Development.  Castenson’s application will advance onto Nationals this summer.  All students received a plaque and a monetary donation for their efforts.

 

Iowa Degrees:  The chapter had a record number of members receive the Iowa FFA Degree. The Iowa Degree is the highest degree a member can earn on the state level.  Less than 5% of the membership is eligible for this honor.  Those members conferred were:  Samantha Alphs, Benjamin Carlson, Morgan Castenson, Payton Erritt, Ryan Jondle, Cassidy Lambert, Joel Lambert, Landon Pontius, Alex Pudenz, Hannah Rees, and Chad Stewart.

Star Farmer Finalist:  Carlson named North Central District Star Farmer finalist.  Benjamin Carlson, the son of Jim and Jennifer Carlson was named a star finalist in “Stars Over Iowa” in Production Agriculture.  His SAE Record book was evaluated and he had a 20 minute interview for this event.  Only six members were selected for this honor in the state. 

Several exciting guests were present at the 2019 Iowa FFA Leadership Conference. Keynote speaker was Matt Stutzman.  Inexplicably born without arms in December of 1982, Matt’s birthparents were soon overwhelmed with the obvious challenges that lay ahead.  He was put for adoption and in January of 1983 he was welcomed into the home of Leon and Jean Stutzman.  Today, he lives without prosthetics and became a member of the 2012 U.S. Paralympic Archery Team and won Silver at the London Games.  He is dubbed the Armless Archer. 

The conference also heard remarks from Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig and National FFA President Luke O’Leary from California.

For more local information and pictures, check out our Facebook page at Gowrie Central-Plains FFA.

 About Iowa FFA Association

The Iowa FFA Association is a youth organization of over 15,600 student members as part of 245 local FFA chapters across Iowa. The FFA mission is to make a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agricultural education. The Iowa FFA Association was organized by delegates from 23 schools at Iowa State College on May 17, 1929 and is an integral part of public instruction in agriculture. The Iowa Department of Education provides leadership and helps set direction for FFA as a service to local agricultural education programs. For more, visit the Iowa FFA Association online at IowaFFA.com, on Facebook, and Twitter.

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