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Officer Profiles

Vive una aventure!
Jul. 21, 2019

Emily Sheehan - Sentinel
Parkview FFA Chapter
Section 5

Howdy there Wisconsin!

Well it is starting to get real! When you are elected as an FFA state officer, you are on such an adrenaline high. At the time you think that this is the best day of your life but in fact every day since has been just as amazing. I am currently 40 days into office and these past 40 days have been filled with laughter, screaming, swimming, games, bonfires, and escape rooms but they have also been filled with personal development, workshop development, reading, writing, stress, and very little sleep. The combination of all of this has made so many new memories with the strangers that I now call my best friends.

My team and I are getting excited for Washington D.C. Summit! Which is where we get to meet all of the others State Officers from every other state! We will be able to sightsee in D.C. along with getting to know other officers and learning new ideas that they implement in their state and bring them back to Wisconsin.

Well my team and I made it to D.C. but it was quite the adventure already even though we are still sitting in the airport! Well to start out, I love to travel! I love seeing new things and I LOVE adventure! Alright well getting to D.C. for my group wasn’t too eventful, besides the fact that Joe didn’t get his complimentary in-flight snacks and drinks, there were no complaints. But once we got to the Reagan National Airport in D.C. is where it started to get interesting. We get off the plane and it is 95 thick degrees outside! We take a 10 minute walk to baggage claim where we stand patiently for 30 minutes staring blankly at the board, waiting for the board to tell us what baggage claim we can go to to pick up our luggage. Well eventually our flight left the board without ever telling us where to get our bags. After that half hour we finally decided to ask at the information desk. We get to our baggage claim and are waiting for the conveyor belt to bring up all of my groups bags. Again standing in the hot muggy airport. My bright blue bag finally emerges from the conveyor belt and I see the top of my bag is super dirty! So I grabbed my bag and thought to myself, “no big deal, I can just wash it off when I get home”. I grabbed my bag and went to set it on its wheels to go find the rest of my team when my hair straightener fall out of the bottom of my bag! I looked at my unsteady bag and realized it only had three wheels (should have four) and there was a massive hole in the corner of my bag! I could see right through to my clothes! My suitcase was absolutely destroyed, completely obliterated! There was no way I could use it, even just for this week. I went to the (HELPING PEOPLE) and they got me a new suitcase to put my things in. As I transfer my things over I pull out my official FFA state officer polo, there was a hole that went straight though, front to back! You could say I was pretty upset. I needed my polo this week to represent our state, our team was going to wear these polos together. Getting to the hotel was a whole other dilemma in that same thick heat, just standing around. But we made it to our hotel and the Wisconsin FFA State Officers are loving summit so far!

Now this wasn’t the worst day of travel that we could have had but it definitely has the possibility of ruining my day or even my week! But we stayed together as a team and got through it! Life is bound to get bumpy, messy, and even dirty but the only thing that matters is what you make of it. My life motto is “Vive una aventura” which is spanish for “live an adventure”, I don’t really have a rhyme or reason for my life motto being in spanish except I REALLY want to learn spanish (I mean and it just sounds cooler). But to live a full life I honestly believe you have to just let the little things that happen roll off your back like water because if you don’t then that water will soon consume you. Wisconsin FFA if any of you have crazy travel stories or you just want to talk about adventure please feel free to contact me. I’d love to hear about all of y’all’s adventures!

Remember vive una aventure
~Emily Sheehan State Sentinel

Neverending Story
Jul. 17, 2019

Grace Morrissey - Vice President
Shullsburg FFA Chapter
Section 4

Hey everyone!

I hope you all are surviving the heat this time of year! This summer has been jam packed with FFA events, county fairs, and of course the newest season of Stranger Things! The State Officers have been busy attending alumni golf outings, preparing SLW & FIRE workshops, and much more to get ready for our year in office.

At the beginning of my State Officer journey, I must admit that I was intimidated by the sheer intensity and dedication that goes into preparing for different events and gathering up material for speeches. But it wasn’t until I was watching season 3 of Stranger Things that I remembered why we put so much of ourselves into developing workshops and speeches.

FFA is a never-ending story. (if you have watched season 3, you know exactly what I’m talking about) :)

Each story follows a journey. FFA’s story began as The Future Farmers of America, but is now known as The National FFA Organization. That original story never ended, it simply began a new chapter and we are all part of it. FFA members all across the country have their own story in FFA, just like you and I. Our dedication as State Officers, Chapter Officers, past, present, and future FFA members and supporters are what makes FFA a never-ending story and keeps the message of FFA alive.

Wisconsin FFA kicked off its new chapter with the election of the 2019-2020 State Officer Team. I am thrilled to see where this chapter in our lives will take us. But I am especially thrilled that it will take me to you! I am excited to see how each and every one of you will impact this chapter in extraordinary ways! Let’s continue to make FFA a never-ending story!

Stay cool out there,
Grace

Drive For Show. Putt For Dough.
Jul. 15, 2019

Curtis Weltzien - Treasurer
Arcadia FFA Chapter
Section 3

Hello Wisconsin FFA!

With a month under our belts, the action is picking up! With Base Camp and Checkpoint #1 complete, we took a day to mingle with and thank some of Wisconsin FFA’s biggest sponsors and supporters. Without these stakeholders, FFA in Wisconsin simply wouldn’t be possible. Collin, Ryan, Lindsey, and I recently had the opportunity to attend the Northwest Wisconsin FFA Foundation Golf Outing at Wild Ridge Golf Course in Eau Claire, WI. The event serves as a major fundraiser for the Foundation which directly supports FFA activities and programs in Wisconsin. The day was filled with fun and laughter by everyone in attendance!

As state officers, we worked at different holes running various contests where players were given the chance to win some extra prizes. As a spectator, it was not only fun to visit with all the sponsors as they came through but also to watch each of them tee off. Some hit the ball for country miles and some struggled to make contact. But regardless of their first shot, it was their shots on the green, or putting, that ultimately saved or lost strokes. Putting separated them from the rest of the pack.

As the day went on, I began to think how this can be related to our FFA experience. Merely just putting on the blue corduroy jacket is like hitting a stunning drive. It looks good from afar and it will definitely start you off in the right direction, but in reality, a drive only makes up a small portion of the total strokes in a round of golf. Lots of people can just throw a jacket on. But that’s only the first step. It’s the next shots, which aren’t always the longest, that separate our FFA experience from others. What we do in the corduroy jacket is like putting. It may not always look pretty, and it may not always get the crowd oohing and aahing, but the small actions of hard work we take make all the difference in the world. So as we get ready for the year ahead, let’s not merely put on our jackets and “drive for show.” Let’s get down to business and “putt for dough!”

As we go through the year, don’t be afraid to get in touch with me at ckweltzien@wisconsinffa.org or (608)-863-6402!

See you soon,
Curtis

Take in Every Moment
Jul. 10, 2019

Lindsey Augustine - Vice President
Ellsworth FFA Chapter
Section 2

Greetings Wisconsin FFA!

My name is Lindsey Augustine from the Ellsworth FFA Chapter, and I am proud to be representing Section 2 as your 2019-2020 Wisconsin FFA State Vice President!

Here are some fun facts about myself so that you can get to know me a little more:

1. I raise and show cattle, sheep, and goats.
2. I have a sister, Kaitlin, that is four years older than me, and I have a twin sister, Mollie.
3. I was on the Parliamentary Procedure team all four years in high school and was able to compete at the state level twice in this LDE.
4. I have been on the livestock judging team for 4-H for the past four years.
5. My favorite food is peanut butter. I tend to eat it straight out of the jar with a spoon more times than I would like to admit.
6. I love to travel and have been fortunate to have been able to explore many countries in Europe.
7. My friends do not trust me to give them directions because my geographical skills are very limited. I am working on it and by the end of my state office career I will hopefully be able to locate places without my phone!
8. I am a sucker for Hallmark movies (especially Christmas ones).
9. I enjoy going deer hunting and fishing.
10. I will be attending the University of Wisconsin - River Falls double majoring in agricultural education and animal science. I plan to become a high school agriculture teacher in the future.

A whole month has passed since the closing gavel tap was dropped at State Convention. It is hard to believe how many places the state officer team has been so far in just one short month. We have all put plenty of miles on our vehicles already. We have attended Base Camp, WAAE Professional Development Conference, and Check Point #1, and have had an enjoyable time filled with many laughs, morning runs with the team, and too many eaten s’mores throughout this past month. The traveling will soon begin to escalate! Within the next month we will be traveling to various golf outings, Washington D.C., State Fair, and ending August with a week-long trip to the famous Jag Lake. Before we know it Sectional Leadership Workshops will be in full swing!

Throughout the past weeks it has been great getting to know the other individuals on the officer team. When you put eleven people into a room that have never met before and you sit them down to layout your plan for the next year, this experience can be frightening. On the other hand, everyone can take a role and use their strengths to better Wisconsin FFA. I am excited to say this team has bonded together and worked towards the future to RISE Up and STAND OUT as a group of individuals with a common goal. Let’s continue to make Wisconsin great through Agriculture and FFA involvement.

As we enter further into summer, there are many fairs occurring throughout Wisconsin. I know first hand how busy these can be. Enjoy every moment while in the show ring, preparing projects, and patiently waiting to see what color ribbons that you have received. Before you know it, this will be your last time attending a fair while being an FFA or 4-H member. Take in every moment and enjoy them to your fullest! Continue to use the strengths that you have to build your future.

If you ever have any questions for me, please do not hesitate to email me at laugustine@wisconsinffa.org.

Enjoy the rest of your summer,
Lindsey

Escape Your Shell!
Jul. 08, 2019

Ryan Erickson - Vice President
Barron FFA Chapter
Section 1

Have no fear Wisconsin FFA, your new state officer team has been put to the test and has passed! Picture this, you and your friends have been trapped in an abandoned 1800’s western town. Every door, drawer, and dresser in this town have locks on them and there are no keys or codes to be found. The only way out of this town is to find the gold and find it fast before the Gatlin Gang rides into town! Although this may sound like the plot of a pretty cheesy movie or video game, this is actually the exact scenario our state officer team found ourselves in last week! Even though our lives were not in jeopardy and the Gatlin Gang may have been no more that a piece of fiction, solving this “escape room experience” we signed up for turned out to be quite a challenge.

After being briefed on the fictional situation and being locked in the room, the timer began, and the race was on! We all split up and looked for anything that could be considered a clue. After minutes and minutes ticked by with few leads to work off of, we began to realize something. We were each working in our own little “shell” and trying to solve big problems by ourselves. We all came to this realization at nearly the same time and knew we had to try something different if we had any chance to escape. As we began to share with others what we had found and put our heads together, it was amazing the discoveries we made!

I think we can all be guilty of hiding out in our own little “shell” at times in our lives. Whether that be avoiding talking to certain students at school, doing the bare minimum on assignments we get, or as in our case, not fully communicating as a team, it happens to the best of us. We like to be comfortable and are not always open to others’ ideas. However, when we escape that “shell” and escape our comfort zone, it is amazing how much we can accomplish. For those that might be wondering, we did find the gold and escape that town once we began working together.

We escaped just in time with only 45 seconds left of our 60-minute clock. Any more wasted time and chances are we would not have been successful. The longer we remain in our “shell,” the more we limit our potential. So, lets escape our “shells” together this year and see just how much we can accomplish!

Have a Great Summer!!
- Ryan

Rise Up. Stand Out.
Jul. 01, 2019

Collin Weltzien - President
Arcadia FFA Chapter
President

Hello Wisconsin FFA!

I hope your summer is off to a rocking start! Between State FFA Convention, summer jobs, county fairs, family get togethers, and now gearing up for Fourth of July Celebrations, I’m sure you all are having no trouble staying busy! The State Officer team can say the same. Since being elected, we’ve hit the ground running. Last week, we found ourselves in La Crosse at the Wisconsin Association of Agricultural Educators (WAAE) Professional Development Conference.

We spent the majority of the week learning the ins and outs of Team Ag Ed, gaining a better understanding of our responsibilities for the year, and discussing the events on our schedule as we move through summer and into fall. But on the top of our to-do list was picking this year’s State Theme.

Now, coming up with a phrase that will be the driver of the Association’s entire year and of course be a staple of our State Convention in June certainly seemed like a daunting task at first. But surprisingly enough, after sitting down one evening in a hotel room, discussing what kind of message we wanted to get across, and tossing around a few different ideas, my teammates and I had picked the theme: Rise Up. Stand Out.

I wanted to give just a brief overview of what the theme means to us and the message we wanted to get across. We decided we wanted a phrase that highlighted the collective power our organization has when we collaborate-when we take our unique talents and interests and come together, it’s pretty amazing what we accomplish. We wanted something that inspires members to feel empowered to overcome the challenges and low points we all encounter, personally, in our organization, and in our agriculture industry and captivate the relentless drive for progress, drive for innovation, and drive to be better we all have. No matter the roadblocks in front of us, we find a way to rise to the occasion, to rise together, and to Rise Up. And as we continue to develop the future leaders of agriculture, we want FFA members to be proud of the fact that FFA members stand out-stand out in a good way. FFA members have a reputation of being a notch of above the rest when it comes to leadership, work ethic, and professionalism, and the responsibility of carrying on that reputation into the future is something we can all take pride in.

I cannot wait to watch you all Rise Up in your Supervised Agricultural Experiences, at contests and conferences, and in your community service events. And I am excited to see how you each Stand Out in your schools, chapters, and communities through your own unique FFA experiences. It will be one heck of a year! I’ll be seeing you soon!

In the meantime, if you ever have any questions for me or are just looking for someone to chew the fat with, please don’t hesitate to email me at cweltzien@wisconsinffa.org or give me a jingle at (608)-863-0895.

Take Care,
Collin

Legacies in the Making
Jul. 31, 2018

Joe Schlies - Parliamentarian
Denmark FFA Chapter
Section 9

Hello Wisconsin FFA! I am Sarah Calaway representing Section 9 originally from the Denmark FFA Chapter. I hope everyone is having a fun filled summer just as my teammates and I are.

To start off here are a few fun facts about myself:
1) I come from a family of five, but our family has grown over the years. My family includes now my dad and mom, John and Lori, my two sisters, Elizabeth and Nicole, my brother in-law, Dean, and my two nephews, Wyatt and Wesley!
2) I grew up on a 300-cow family dairy farm and now help with feeding the calves when I am home.
3) I have two SAEs including Beef Production Entrepreneurship and Equine Science Placement.
4) I am currently a Sophomore at the University of Wisconsin- River Falls majoring in Agricultural Education with a minor in Animal Science.
5) At UW-River Falls I enjoy participating in Ag Ed society as well as Block and Bridle.
6) I raise and show purebred Hereford Cattle and have had my first cow since I was 11.
7) This year will be my eighth year as an FFA Member.
8) My favorite color is blue.
9) Some of my favorite foods are steak, cheesy potatoes, and popcorn.
10) I train and show Percheron draft horses.

For the next 11 days my team and I are serving as advocates for FFA and Wisconsin agriculture at the state fair. The state fair is held in Milwaukee each year and many travel to the fair to see the animals that are presented from around the state of Wisconsin. Also at the state fair the state FFA band and choir are highlighted during the second week of the fair. We are excited to be able to teach fairgoers about Wisconsin Agriculture in the Discovery Barn and at the Veggie Races, both of these areas are great education tools that we get to be a part of. Along with educating others about agriculture we also get to spread how we followed traditions, look towards the future, and are leaving our legacy in FFA. Come by and visit us we would love to hear about how you are leaving your legacy.

I am excited to be serving you this year and don’t hesitate to contact me at scalaway@wisconsinffa.org!

-Sarah

New Charter, Same Traditions
Jul. 29, 2018

Lydia Williams - Reporter
Shawano FFA Chapter
Section 8

Hello Wisconsin FFA!
My name is Mitchell Schroepfer from the Antigo FFA Chapter. This year I am serving as the Section 8 State Officer as well as the State Treasurer. One of my favorite things is listening to stories, so I am very excited to begin meeting and connecting with all our members and hearing what they have to say about FFA and agriculture.

This past week the state officer team had the privilege to be part of a new tradition in FFA. We traveled to Washington D.C. and attended the first ever State Officer Summit hosted by the National FFA Organization. This was a wonderful opportunity for us to talk with officers from across the country and learn more about how FFA varies in each state. The Summit culminated on Tuesday morning when we met with Senator Ron Johnson and Representative Glenn Grothman, and with senior advisors to Speaker Paul Ryan and Senator Tammy Baldwin. Our purpose in these meetings was to advocate for FFA, and specifically for a bill that would renew our federal charter and ensure a bright future for FFA. We were very successful during our visits and Rep. Grothman even signed on as a co-sponsor to the bill.
Thanks to these visits we added “advocates” to our ever-growing list of legacies in FFA.

We also had a special moment while waiting between two of our meetings. A small group of us were waiting inside the Hart Senate building when a gentleman approached us and asked “FFA members, why are we here?” Of course, we happily answered in unison while he joined in. He then explained that he was the state president of Florida FFA in 1960 and shared with us some stories from his years as an FFA member. He was in D.C. continuing his tradition of being a leader and an advocate, an ideal we all can strive for.

Throughout this year if you have any questions, want me to attend any events, or simply just want to chat, feel free to contact me at mschroepfer@wisconsinffa.org. Again, I am extremely excited to meet all our fabulous members and educators, and I can’t wait to listen to more amazing stories.
Thanks Again,
Mitchell Schroepfer

Take it or Leave it
Jul. 24, 2018

Daniel Clark - Vice President
Spencer FFA Chapter
Section 7

Hello Wisconsin FFA, I am Jillian Tyler from the Granton FFA representing Section 7. I am delighted to be serving you as Vice President for the 2018-2019 year.

Growing up on a dairy farm and surrounded by FFA I joined the organization as soon as possible. One of the reasons that I joined FFA is because of the many opportunities that I would be offered through out my time in the blue jacket. During your time in the FFA, you will come across many different opportunities and you will be faced with a choice. You can either choose to take advantage of the opportunity you are given or you can choose to not take advantage of the opportunity. Either way the choice is yours.

This week the State Officer Team is in Washington D.C. attending the State Officer Summit. We arrived on Sunday in Washington D.C. with a dark and dreary sky overlooking us. After grabbing a bite to eat we found ourselves on the Metro going to The 9/11 Pentagon Memorial. Getting off of the Metro we realized it was raining and not a single officer had an umbrella. The team was faced with a choice. Do we take advantage of the opportunity we are given to visit The 9/11 Pentagon Memorial in the rain or head back to the hotel without viewing the memorial? What did the team choose? You guessed it, we took advantage of the opportunity we were given and visited The 9/11 Pentagon Memorial! The rain started out as a light sprinkle which quickly turned into a down pour, but that did not hold us back. Going from tree to tree taking cover from the rain we were able to discuss and share our thoughts about the memorial. The State Officer Team took advantage of this once in a lifetime opportunity and were able to gain new knowledge about our nation’s history because of it. By taking each and every opportunity we are given, whether it be visiting a memorial or competing in a Leadership Development Event, we are also given the opportunity to learn and grow.

The next time you need to choose between taking or leaving an opportunity what will you decide?

Throughout the year if you have questions, want me to attend an event or would like to talk, you can contact me at jtyler@wisconsinffa.org. I am so excited for the journey ahead and cannot wait to meet and connect with more of you.

Thanks for traveling with us this week to Washington D.C.

Until next time,
Jillian Tyler

Dream Makers
Jul. 19, 2018

Jared Mack - Secretary
Sauk Prairie FFA Chapter
Section 6

Hello Wisconsin FFA! I hope you all have been enjoying a fantastic summer so far, and I am sure it has been flying by quickly for all of you as it has been for my teammates and me! Between Base Camp Training, attending WAAE Conference, Farm Technology Days, and Checkpoint #1 Training, this year is off to a great start and I cannot wait to continue attending and participating in many fun activities over the course of the summer!

My name is Ashley Hagenow from the Rio FFA Chapter, and I am honored to be serving as your 2018-2019 Section 6 Wisconsin State FFA Officer! This year I am serving as State Reporter, and I cannot wait to meet and connect with so many of you in the upcoming year!

As many of you have probably heard, this year’s Wisconsin FFA State Theme is:
“Our Tradition. Our Future. Our Legacy.”

As State Officers, we were asked a question that really resonated with me: “What are some ways that everyone can contribute to the legacy of FFA and agriculture?”

This question can be interpreted and responded to in a multitude of ways, and I think it’s fitting that I choose a story from a few weeks ago to tie it all together.

When attending the Wisconsin Association of Agricultural Educators Conference a few weeks ago, I had the privilege of talking briefly with Mr. Don Josko, who was awarded the VIP Award during the WAAE awards banquet, an incredibly prestigious honor. Myself and a few teammates were talking with Mr. Josko while we waited for the elevators, and he said something that really resounded with me: We all have the power and the responsibility to be dream makers. To me this means that not only do we need to go forth and make dreams a reality for ourselves, but for others around us as well. By being dream makers for others and helping them to be successful, we are in fact reaching our own goals and achieving OUR pinnacle of success. These words are some that I will live by for not only my next year of service, but for the rest of my life. So whether it be helping a member with their public speaking abilities for the next Leadership Development Event, staying after school that extra half hour to continue work on your Supervised Agricultural Experience, or simply sitting down for lunch with your officer team and advisor, we are all working towards making our mark within FFA and agriculture. We can leave our legacy by helping others to find their passion and voice for agriculture and the FFA organization, and that will help us to be most successful along the way!

If any of you have any questions, stories to share, or are interested in having me attend an event within your chapter or community, please contact me at any time through my email, ahagenow@wisconsinffa.org. I would love the opportunity to connect with you all and see the legacy you all are leaving within the organization through your service and action! I am looking forward to the upcoming year and cannot wait to see the incredible things you all are going to accomplish!

Legacies Left to Leave
Jul. 18, 2018

Emily Sheehan - Sentinel
Parkview FFA Chapter
Section 5

Hey Hey Wisconsin FFA!

My name is Gaelan Combs from the Verona FFA Chapter, and I am thrilled to be serving as your 2018-2019 State FFA Officer! I will be serving as your sentinel this year, and over the next year I am excited to have the opportunity to get to know all of you.

With that being said, I would like to introduce myself with a couple of fun facts. So, here are your 10 facts about your Section 5 State Officer.

1) I’ve developed two SAEs during my FFA career. My first is Diversified Livestock Production – Placement, where I raise horses, show poultry, and show hogs on my family’s farm. My second SAE is Environmental Science and Natural Resource Management, where I have maintained a public garden educating Town of Verona residents about pollinator plants for residential planting.
2) This fall I will be a freshman at the University of Wisconsin – Madison studying Dairy Science with a minor in Spanish Language. On Wisconsin!
3) I was involved in multiple Leadership Development Events during my FFA tenure. I competed in the Prepared Public Speaking contest since my sophomore year, and recently was the state runner up at this past convention, and I also competed in the Employment Skills LDE my senior year.
4) My favorite animal is a giraffe! They’re tall and lanky – similar to your Section 5 State Officer
5) My family consists of my older sister, Aidan, my parents, Dave and Sherry, and my dog, Maizey.
6) Outside of FFA, in high school I was on the varsity baseball team, I played football, I snowboarded on our alpine ski & snowboard team, and I rode on our equestrian team!
7) In college, I plan to be a part of the Badger Dairy Club and compete on the Dairy Challenge team, as well as finding more opportunities along the way. Along with that, I hope to study abroad in Argentina or New Zealand.
8) After college, my plan is to pursue research opportunities in the dairy industry, specifically in dairy genetics or dairy nutrition. I would like a career path that would allow me to be able to publicize and present this information to farmers.
9) My favorite holiday is the 4th of July. Fireworks and barbeques are the coolest thing ever, if you ask me.
10) I love Arnold Palmers, there is a very high chance you will see me kickin’ it with one this year.

With the school year coming, I am incredibly excited to meet all of YOU and learn about what makes you who you are over the upcoming year!

Recently, our team revealed our theme for the upcoming year: “Our Tradition. Our Future. Our Legacy.”

A couple of nights ago, Amelia, Ashley, Emily, Mitchell, and I stopped at Hilltop in Stevens Point for dinner after Farm Technology Days. We strolled in wearing our polos, and tucked into our meal. As Amelia asked for the bill after our delicious meal, the waitress told us, “Actually, guys, a gentleman saw you all walk in here and wanted me to tell you that he was in FFA too, and he paid for your meal.” We sat in shock as those words resonated through us. After thanking her, we got up and rushed to the parking lot to thank our mysterious philanthropist. Although, something hit me as we walked through the lot: this person, whoever he was, didn’t want to be thanked. He didn’t want to be recognized, promoted, or patted on the back. He solely wanted to leave his legacy of generosity. Although, this gentleman is not alone with having a legacy left to leave; we all do. We have legacies to live years beyond our time in the blue jacket, whether it be our family’s, our school’s, or our own. The FFA gives us this opportunity to discover how we can be building that legacy for the future, no matter what it is. Our years in the FFA and agriculture education lead us to discover what we are passionate about, and our passions will lead us to a legacy. My challenge to you is to take that opportunity and run with it.

If you ever have a question or need a listening ear, feel free to reach out to me at gcombs@wisconsinffa.org or call me at (608)-293-3726.

Yours,
Gaelan Combs

Wild Ride Ahead!
Jul. 11, 2018

Curtis Weltzien - Treasurer
Arcadia FFA Chapter
Section 3

Hi Wisconsin FFA!

My name is Collin Weltzien from the Arcadia FFA chapter, and I am proud to be representing Section 3 as your 2018-2019 Wisconsin FFA State Vice President!

As a brief introduction, here are 10 facts that give you an idea of my background and interests.

1.My family consists of my parents, Keith and Karen, and 2 younger brothers, Curtis and Connor.
2. I live and work on our 180-cow family dairy farm just outside of Arcadia. Fittingly, my SAE was Dairy Production Placement.
3. I recently completed my freshman year at UW-River Falls where I am majoring in Agribusiness and minoring in Dairy Science. With my degree, I hope to become the 4th generation to operate Weltzien Farms.
4. In FFA, I've competed in the Dairy Judging, Soil Judging, and Parliamentary Procedure contests as well as the Creed, Prepared, and Extemporaneous speaking contests.
5. I am a 13-year member of the Glencoe Hustlers 4-H club where I enjoy showing a Holstein steer at the Buffalo County Fair each year.
6. In high school, I played football, basketball, baseball, and shot trap. I was also involved with Student Council as Class President, the school musical, and band where I played the trumpet.
7. My hobbies include hunting, fishing, golfing, snowmobiling, riding motorcycle, playing cards, watching sports, and woodworking.
8. I thoroughly enjoy to travel. I've been to 30 states and had the opportunity to travel to Argentina this past spring through an education abroad program.
9. My favorite food is steak, but I pretty much love anything that includes beef, pork, or chicken.
10. I am a Packers, Brewers, Bucks, and Badgers fan!

Nearly a month’s time has come and gone since the gavel dropped for the final time at State Convention. It’s hard to believe how many places the state officer team has been in that short month! Between Base Camp, WAAE Professional Development Conference, and now Farm Technology Days, we’ve put on a few miles and had an absolute blast along the way! But the pace is getting ready to pick up even more! The next month or so will include another trip to Marshfield for Checkpoint #1, a flight to Washington D.C. for the State Officer Summit, heading to Milwaukee for the Wisconsin State Fair, and topping it all off with a road trip up to Jag Lake for a week-long retreat. And then, before we know it, Sectional Leadership Workshop season will be upon us!

Now, I’m sure the clock isn’t ticking any slower for you! Between work, getting ready for the fair, spending time with family, and simply trying to find time for some fun summer activities, chances are your summer is cruising right along as well. My challenge for you is to soak it all in! Don’t forget to take time to appreciate each of your experiences. We can’t slow down the clock, but we can make the most of the time we have, so sit back and embrace the wild ride that the remainder of summer has in store for you!

If you ever have any questions for me or are just looking for someone to chew the fat with, please don’t hesitate to email me at cweltzien@wisconsinffa.org or give me a jingle at (608)-863-0895.

Take Care,
Collin

The Anventures are coming!
Jul. 11, 2018

Grace Morrissey - Vice President
Shullsburg FFA Chapter
Section 4

Hello,
I first off want to give you all a few facts about myself.
• I graduated from River Ridge High School in 2016 and am now in my third year at University of Wisconsin– River Falls, majoring in agricultural education
• I grew up on a diversified livestock farm where we have beef, sheep, swine, and dairy calves
• Growing up I was very active in 4-H and FFA livestock and meat evaluation
• I was also active showing at the local, county and state levels
• My family includes my dad, Dennis; mom, Denice; brother, Brian; sisters, Amanda and Andrea. I am the youngest!
This week I along with fellow officers attended farm technology days in Wood County and had a blast. Part of the officer team assisted at the tractor driving contest in the morning, while the other half assisted at the booth at tent city. In the afternoon the whole team was able to experience a very fun, educational opportunity when we were able to strap on waders and went into a simulated cranberry bog. We also had the opportunity to interact with many FFA members which was really the first opportunity for the team to interact with members. We all really enjoyed that that experience and truly makes us all even more excited for this year of service.

(Role) Model Status
Jul. 08, 2018

Lindsey Augustine - Vice President
Ellsworth FFA Chapter
Section 2

Hey Wisconsin FFA! I anticipate you are all enjoying everything summer has to offer, especially celebrating our country’s Birthday this past week.

I am Paige, your State FFA Secretary. I am the oldest of four children, my favorite color is aqua blue, I love my dairy cows, cheese and cupcakes are my favorite foods, I have two dogs, shooting archery is one of my hobbies, and I love baking and eating pie.

During the final week of June, me and my teammates spent time attending the Wisconsin Association of Agricultural Educators Professional Development Conference in Appleton, During our time there we had training sessions each day ranging from meeting with presenters on topics such preparing for our duties at State Fair, to understanding ag issues, and learning more about FFA, the FFA Foundation, the Alumni, and the remaining groups that make up Wisconsin Team Ag Ed. At WAAE, it was great to see so many advisors from throughout the state. One of my favorite parts of the week was seeing our hard working teachers and advisors get a little bit of recognition for their dedication to us as members and students. Our Ag teachers work tirelessly to ensure we are able to take part in interesting labs, engaging field trips, and the many FFA activities that are offered. It is an understatement to say that I look up to teachers, but especially our Ag teachers.

On Independence Day, I was out on the lake with family and friends. I had a moment while I was proudly watching my brother waterski around the lake. You may be wondering, “Paige, what does waterskiing have to do with WAAE conference?” I will explain. In that moment that my younger brother was water skiing, I was thinking about my childhood memories at my great-grandparents cabin on the lake. I remember watching the neighbor kids waterski around the lake and looked up to them because they made it look so effortless, even when they fell they got right back up again. Sitting there I thought to myself, “I wonder if there is anyone sitting on the edge of this lake watching me or my little brother ski and looking up to us thinking we make it look effortless?” I should also add, I am not great at water skiing by any means. In fact, it took multiple tries to get up and I took a few tumbles into the water. It is important for others to witness us fail and try again.

As I have been reflecting on our time at WAAE and the time I spent at the lake, I realized that no matter who we are or how old we are someone is always watching and possibly looking to us as a role model. I have looked to my Ag teacher as a role model in my life as well as many other educators who I know both in and out of school. We may never know who was watching us in that moment of success or failure, but we must remember to always do the right thing and to succeed with humility and fail gracefully. This is an important thought and lesson we can take with us as we prepare to exhibit fairs this summer or even into the other activities we take part in such as sports, school clubs, and more. Somewhere there is a younger member who looks up to you and wants to be like you someday, so do the right thing and be the role model you want others to remember and imitate.

I am truly excited to serve you this year. I’m looking forward to meeting each of you and learning about the incredible things you and your chapter do. Please email me at pnelson@wisconsinffa.org if you need anything or ever have any questions.

Your Friend,

Paige

Ours.
Jul. 01, 2018

Collin Weltzien - President
Arcadia FFA Chapter
President

Hey Wisconsin FFA! I hope you all are enjoying the summer between spending time at State FFA Convention, county fairs, and family gatherings.

I’m Amelia: fan of the color blue, ice skating, and pancakes, lover of cheesy jokes, lover of cheese in general, and State FFA President.

I wanted to share with you this year’s Wisconsin FFA theme:
Our Tradition. Our Future. Our Legacy.

This past spring, I was eating the continental breakfast at a hotel in official dress. I heard someone from behind me say, “Ah, they’ve still got you guys in the corduroy.” A man sitting at a nearby table with his two kids had said this, and I ended up eating breakfast with them, laughing about the good times had in the blue jacket and memories he made. I love that we as FFA members can always find someone to connect with, someone else who knows that corduroy makes the hot hotter and the cold colder, someone who knows all of the work that goes into this organization, and all of the experiences that make it worth it. The tradition of the blue jacket. But it’s not just his tradition, or just my tradition. It is Our Tradition.

I left breakfast to head to the Regional CDEs in Appleton. There I talked with many FFA members about how their CDEs went. Many answers sounded similar to mine when I walked out of the competition room: “This went wrong,” “That’s not what I thought the competition would be set up like,” “I’m going to have to study more of this part.” Looking towards the future, we all have things that went just a little wrong in competitions. But that’s really cool – to always have higher heights to reach for. The State FFA Convention next June will be our 90th Wisconsin FFA Convention, and it has me thinking – what will the next 90 years look like? That’s for us as members, stakeholders, and alumni to create: through our competitions, community service, and careers. It is Our Future.

We each play a big part in maintaining the traditions while creating the future of FFA. We can do this by connecting with the person across from us at breakfast, by helping those around us grow as leaders, by building up communities through Food for America and service programs, and by strengthening American agriculture as a whole through our careers and our FFA involvement. The ways we add to FFA’s legacy are found in our conversations had with others and our actions in the community. Legacy is a big responsibility. It’s how we are remembered. And it is for everyone who has ever been involved in FFA – from me, to your grandparent, to your chapter, to the family at the continental breakfast, to you. We all have a part. It is Our Legacy.

I am incredibly excited to be serving you this upcoming year – I know each of you does amazing things, and I am looking forward to seeing them! Please invite me to anything your chapter is hosting this year that you’d like me to come to. Even if it is a small event, it would mean the world to me to get to know you and see how YOU are contributing to our legacy.
Please let me know if you ever need anything – you can email me at ahayden@wisconsinffa.org

-Amelia


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