Six students from throughout the country were elected National FFA officers for 2011-12, an announcement made to a packed and excited house of FFA members at Conseco Fieldhouse today to officially close the 84th National FFA Convention.
Ryan W. Best of New Mexico, Jason Troendle of Minnesota, Kenneth D. Quick Jr. of New York, Alicia Hodnik of Wisconsin, Cain Thurmond of Georgia and Seth Pratt of Idaho have been elected National FFA officers for 2011-12.
Best, of Portales, N.M, will serve as National FFA president. He is a junior at New Mexico State University majoring in agricultural and extension education. Best is a member of the Elida High School FFA Chapter in Elida, N.M., led by advisor Rodney Savage. He is the son of Kent and Sherri Best.
Troendle, of Charles, Minn., has been elected National FFA secretary. He is a freshman at Bethel University majoring in economics and environmental studies. The son of Fred and Sandra Troendle, he is a member of the St. Charles High School FFA Chapter in St. Charles, Minn., led by advisors Craig Will and Willie Lubahn.
Quick Jr., of Granville, N.Y., will serve as National FFA Eastern Region vice president. The son of Michael and Connie Yopp, he is a freshman at Cornell University majoring in international agricultural and rural development and applied economics and management. Quick is a member of the Triton High School FFA Chapter in Erwin, N.C., led by John Hardee, Allen West, Andy Nelson and Andy Cole. He is the son of Michael and Connie Yopp.
Hodnik, of Walworth, Wis., has been elected National FFA Central Region vice president. She is a sophomore at University of Wisconsin at River Falls, majoring in agricultural education with an emphasis on biotechnology. Hodnik is a member of the Big Foot Union High School FFA Chapter in Walworth, Wis., led by advisors Rick Henningfeld and Lisa Konkel. She is the daughter of Fred and Debra Hodnik and Donald Weber and Sharon Montgomery.
Thurmond, of Jefferson, Ga., will serve as National FFA Southern Region vice president. The son of Phil and Susie Thurmond, he is a freshman at University of Georgia majoring in agricultural and applied economics. Thurmond is a member of the Jefferson High School FFA chapter in Jefferson, Ga., led by Ken Bray, David Calloway and Cliff Tippens. He is the son of Phil and Susie Thurmond.
Pratt, of Blackfoot, Idaho, will serve as National FFA Western Region vice president. He is freshman at the University of Idaho majoring in agricultural science, communications and leadership. Pratt, the son of Mark and Wendy Pratt, is a member of the Blackfoot High School FFA Chapter in Blackfoot, led by advisor Travis Henderson.
For the next year, the national officer team will be the face and spirit of FFA. Collectively, they'll travel more than 100,000 miles throughout the country as they engage top leaders in business, government and education and lead a host of personal growth and leadership training seminars for FFA members. The team will also help set policies that will shape the future of the National FFA Organization and promote agricultural literacy in general.
Nominees for national office must first qualify at the state level to represent their state FFA association. They must submit a detailed application that highlights their academic accomplishments and showcases contributions to their local communities. Those seeking national office must also submit an essay that explains their desire to be elected to national office.
At the national FFA convention, candidates participate in five rounds of interviews, take an in-depth written test and complete two writing exercises. A panel of nine state FFA officers comprises a nominating committee that recommends the six national FFA officers to a group of 450 FFA convention delegates.
Formerly known as Future Farmers of America, the National FFA Organization provides agricultural education to 540,379 student members in grades seven through 12 who belong to one of 7,489 local FFA chapters throughout the U.S., Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.