Seven young individuals lead the Indiana FFA this year. They were elected as state officers in June and are well into their year of service, helping FFA members across the state learn and grow.
Maybe you met one or more of the officers at the Indiana State Fair or some other event, or maybe you know them locally. Whether you know any of the officers or not, here’s an introduction.
The 2018-19 state FFA officer team includes: Sami DeLey, Shenandoah FFA, Middletown, president; Brittany Gonzales, Tri-County FFA, Wolcott, secretary; Savannah Bordner, Carroll @ Flora FFA, Flora, northern region vice president; Nathan Deatrick, North Harrison FFA, Ramsey, southern region vice president; Austin Berenda, South Newton FFA, Kentland, treasurer; Chyenne Deno, South Newton FFA, Kentland, reporter; and Jarrett Bailey, Bellmont FFA, Decatur, sentinel.
Indiana Prairie Farmer asked each officer three questions: What is your favorite FFA activity? What is your favorite FFA memory? Where are you headed after your year of service to Indiana FFA?
Here are their responses:
DeLey: My favorite memory is our Legacy prom. Each year we host a prom for people of disabilities in our community. FFA members dress up for the prom as well. Hundreds of people attend, and it’s awesome.
My favorite activity was participating in the ag communications contest. A team of chapter members complete various activities related to agricultural communications.
As for the future, I was headed to Ball State University to study sports broadcasting. Now I’m rethinking my options and considering ag communications at Purdue University as well.
Gonzales: Competing in parliamentary procedure contests is my favorite activity. Not having a farm background, this contest really caught my attention. My favorite memory revolves around a parliamentary procedure practice. One of our team members jumped inside a box and hid during a practice while our advisor, Travis Scherer, was out of the room. We had been trying to scare him without success for a long time. He came in the room, the member jumped out and truly scared him. It was great!
I will head to Purdue to major in ag education. I want to be an agriculture teacher.
Bordner: Public speaking is my favorite activity, for sure. My favorite memory involves my friend and fellow FFA member, Makenzie Metzger. Starting early in our FFA careers, we participated in our chapter’s Leave a Legacy project. We raised $20,000 to buy a lemon shake-up trailer to use not only at the county fair, but other events. It will help our chapter raise funds for a long time.
I plan to attend Purdue and major in ag communications.
Deatrick: Attending the Washington Leadership Conference for FFA was my favorite activity. I met FFA members from various states and was exposed to FFA on a much broader scale.
My favorite memory will always be running for state office and interacting with the 12 other candidates.
I will head to Southern Illinois University next year, be a part of the college rodeo team, and hope to become an agriculture teacher.
Berenda: Creed speaking was my favorite activity. It got me started in FFA and helped me understand what FFA is about.
My favorite memories revolve around my seventh-grade year spent with Shane Storey, who taught middle school ag at our school at the time. He truly got me excited about FFA.
Deno: I loved being a counselor for two FFA camps both my junior and senior years of high school. Working with younger members was rewarding.
My favorite memories revolve around soil judging — especially leaving in the middle of the night for soil judging contests all over the state!
I will attend Vincennes University next year, and then transfer to Purdue after two years. I will major in natural resources and animal sciences.
Bailey: My family is part of a 3,500-acre grain farm, and we don’t have a chicken on the place, but my favorite activity is poultry judging. My favorite memories naturally revolve around poultry judging, our friendly competition with other teams like North Miami FFA and our trips to national contests.
I will attend Purdue in ag economics and will also participate in Army ROTC.