Richmond FFA brings home state honors

State FFA degree recipients from Richmond High School. (Submitted photo)

The Richmond FFA Chapter had a very strong showing at state contests this year.
The Soil Evaluation team followed up its district championship performance with a strong effort, finishing 10th out of 48 teams, and earning a gold ranking. Team members included Brett Goligoski, Cassie Kinnard, Cathy Sander and Brandon Taber. Cathy earned a gold ranking as an individual by finishing 17th out of 173 competitors.
The Farm Management team finished 9th out of 48 teams, also earning a gold ranking. Team members included Haley Bentley, Leslyn Cole, Danielle Hogan and Brittanie Schuette.  Brittanie earned a gold ranking as an individual by finishing 12th out of 178 competitors.
Haley Bentley was recognized as the Area 6 Star in Agribusiness at the convention. Area Stars in Agribusiness are selected based upon outstanding achievement in work experience in an agricultural business as part of a Supervised Agricultural Experience. Area 6 includes 19 chapters in the Central District.
Bentley’s SAE program began with her grandparents’ gunsmithing and instructional firearm care DVD business. As the company grew, they turned the sales and distribution of the videos over to Bentley. She now manages the company and employs her younger brother and cousin to assist with operations.
Eight members of the Richmond FFA competed in proficiency award categories. Proficiency awards recognize FFA members who excel as agricultural entrepreneurs, employees or volunteers while gaining hands-on career experience.
Dean Thompson received the second-place Missouri FFA Oil and Fiber Crop Proficiency Award. Thompson’s Supervised Agricultural Experience began with 130 acres of soybeans, sweet corn and hay.  He has now expanded his SAE to include over 300 acres of rented farmland. In 2011, Thompson received the State FFA Diversified Crop Entrepreneurship Proficiency Award.
Sara Ogan, a 2011 RHS graduate, placed first in the Veterinary Science Proficiency Award category. Her application will be judged nationally later this year. Ogan started in veterinary science when she began volunteering at the Ray County Humane Society. The experience she gained helped her become an employee at Renfro Veterinary Services.  Her duties include proper handling of animals, medicating hospitalized animals, taking and developing x-rays, and assisting doctors with surgeries and exams.  Last year, she was a proficiency winner in small animal production at the state level.
Other Richmond FFA members receiving recognition for proficiency awards at state convention included Haley Bentley, Agricultural Sales-Entrepreneurship; Leslie Russell, Equine Science-Placement; Gabe Vandiver, Forage Production; Brandon Taber, Forest Management; Brittanie Schuette, Goat Production; and Kaitlyn Rowan, Sheep Production.
Seven members of the Richmond FFA also received the State FFA Degree, the highest award members can receive at state level.  Awarding of the degree is based on a member’s supervised agricultural experience program in agribusiness or production agriculture, and leadership ability as demonstrated through involvement in FFA, school and community activities.  Richmond’s State FFA Degree recipients included Haley Bentley, Danielle Hogan, Kyle Marrant, Brittanie Schuette, Brandon Taber, Adrian Tackett, and Gabe Vandiver.

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