South Dakota FFA Foundation, Inc.
SD FFA Foundation Email Newsletter ~ | ~ Volume 8, Issue 5 ~ | ~ November 2017

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The SD FFA Email Newsletter highlights special projects of the SD FFA and SD FFA Foundation.  Please forward this newsletter to others you know who are involved and interested in FFA and agriculture education. Thank you for your support of the FFA in South Dakota!I can. We will.

Director’s Message:

Fall - isn't it a great time of year?
As harvest comes to an end, we celebrate everyone in the agriculture industry!
With Veteran’s Day, we celebrate our freedom and thank those that protect it.
With Thanksgiving approaching, we celebrate family and friends, count our many blessings, and say thank you for your philanthropic gift.

There is much to celebrate – and we continue to celebrate the future generations of ag leaders in South Dakota. Each day through agricultural education, preparations are made to ensure students can reach their true potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success.  This was evident with our success at National FFA Convention, where we celebrated student success!

Gerri Ann Eide, Executive Director, SD FFA Foundation, Inc.

Transforming Leaders!

Individuals or businesses; small or large contributions … EVERY donation is important and boosts the impact the SD FFA Foundation can do for our members. Advocating for agriculture is more important than ever, and what our leadership events are all about. Sadie

Sadie Vander Wal, Northwestern Area FFA just placed 6th in the National FFA Employment Interview Skills event and shares, “Competing at national convention truly gave me a unique perspective of other FFA members from across the nation. As I waited my turn to be interviewed during preliminary rounds, I was astonished at how easily I could talk to other members, but it was all based on the fact that I had something in common with each of them through our membership in FFA. Every member that I met had a different background, and sharing with them the commonalities and differences we have had through our agricultural experiences showed me how influential the FFA organization is."

"All 41 of the contestants in my Employment Skills CDE were unique, and we each had the task of proving why our experiences qualified us to be the most employable candidate for the competition. Even though we were against each other in competition, we all realized how beneficial simply meeting each other was and how gaining connections with each other could benefit us greatly. Ten years down the road, I will not remember exactly what questions the judges asked me and how I answered them; I will remember the connections I made with my fellow competitors. Meeting other members showed me how despite where someone is from, each has a passion for agriculture and dedication to achieve their goals no matter their background. National convention served as an eye-opening experience in that aspect, and I would not have learned how uniquely talented each FFA member is without having met other members through my competition.”

Don’t wait until you can give more, act now to make a difference. You make a difference – thank you!


Upcoming events:

  • December 3 - State Alumni Events, Pierre

  • December 3-4 - State Leadership Career Development Events, Pierre

  • December 20 - FFA Family of the year Nominations due

  • January 5-6 – Winter Professional Ag Teacher Development - Brookings

  • January 10– State FFA Degrees due in District 2,5,&6

  • January 17-18 - District Officer Training, Pierre

  • January 18 - FFA Legislative Breakfast and Foundation meeting, Pierre


Join SD FFA Alumni Now!alumni

FFA Alumni and Ag Ed supporters- each of you have felt and experienced first-hand the amazing opportunities agriculture education & FFA offer. You or your children may have experienced these very opportunities. Through the SD FFA students learn about agriculture, but more importantly pursue net-working and career development opportunities that enhance their skills for a lifetime! 

The South Dakota FFA continues to grow its Alumni organization and we believe you have vital talents to assist us. By developing a strong alumni, we can ensure a stronger and brighter future for tomorrow's Ag Education and potential FFA students! 

Please join this great organization! Contact me any time with questions in regard to membership at

Dawn Nagel, SD FFA Alumni


I Can. We Will.

Jaclynn KnutsonSouth Dakotans shine in Indy

The excitement ran high in the city as students heard great messages of potential with the convention theme, I Can. We Will. USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue spoke to the opening session and encouraged students to be their very best. SD FFA members and agricultural educators represented our state with class, integrity, and passion for agriculture, and were recognized for months of hard work and preparation as the convention proceedings finished up in Indianapolis. A few highlights to note:

National Winner - Jaclynn Knutson, Viborg-Hurley, Grain Production- Entrepreneurship Proficiency

National Winner - Ella Stiefvater, McCook Central, Agriscience Fair- Animal Systems Div. 1

Ella StiefvaterNational Proficiency Award Runner Up: Kohl Miller, McCook Central – Diversified Horticulture

2nd Place - Jace Haven, Northwestern, Agriscience Fair - Power, Structure, and Technical Systems

3rd Place - Kayle Lauck, McCook Central, Agriscience Fair - Environmental Services

3rd Place - Abby Bragg & Sophia Kaffar, McCook Central, Agriscience Fair - Animal Systems Div. 2

4th place – Rylee Klinkhammer and Tanner Peterson, McCook Central, Agriscience Fair – Power, Structural and Technical Systems, Div.4

4th place – Megan Stiefvater and Catherine Whaler Whaler McCook Central, Agriscience Fair, Food Products and Processing Systems, Div. 2

4th Place – Hunter Eide, Gettysburg, Agriscience Fair – Environmental Services/Natural Resource Systems, Div. 3

5th Place - Kadon Leddy, Milbank, Agriscience Fair- Social Sciences - Division 5

6th place - Morgan Kohl, Watertown, Agriscience Fair, Environmental Services/Natural Resource Systems, Division 5

Fred ZenkHonorary American Degree recipients:
Jeff Hoffman, Mitchell FFA Advisor and Ag Ed Instructor
Fred Zenk, Webster-Waubay FFA Advisor and Ag Ed Instructor

Career Development Event Results:

Gold Teams & individuals:
5th place, Gold medal - Ag Technology and Mechanical Systems – Brookings; Nick Rudnik, 5th Place Individual

6th place - Employment Skills - Sadie VanderWal, Northwestern

Silver Teams & individuals:
Ag Communications - West Central; Carter Ulrich, 13th Place Individual and Jacob
Harden, Lauryn Riepma, Emma Lewis,

Ag Issues - West Central; Ellie Stone, Branzon Underwood, Hunter Wilebski, Derick Peters, Tiffany Rausch, Ellie Krizan, Cossette Ulrich

Conduct of Chapter Meetings – Highmore; Veronica Knipping, Dylan McDonnel, Blake Farstveet, Velvet Jessen, Emily Semmler, Sylvia Rodriguez, Lainey Aasby, Chesney Effling

Dairy Cattle Handlers Activity - Steven Paulson, Groton

13th place team - Livestock Judging - Lennox Sundstrom; Sarah Kroeger, Denver Nordmann, Sami Nordmann and Layne Lundstra

19th - Milk Quality and Products - Willow Lake Mason Burke- gold, Abbie Bratland- silver, Cutler Michalski & Cade Pedersen- Bronze

22nd - Horse Evaluation – Florence; Callie Mueller (5th Place gold individual) Evie Kahnke-silver, Chantel Nelson-bronze, and Allison Grygiel-bronze.

28th Floriculture – Garretson; Nobel Nothstine, Emily Malsom, Angel Larson, Kennedy & Houghton

Meat Evaluation - Sanborn Central/Woonsocket; Aaron Linke, Nathan Linke, Jared Goldammer, and Austin Schmit

Prepared Public Speaking - Bridger Gordon, Sturgis

Farm Business Management – Miller; Dylan Fulton, Kyle Haiar, Evan Steers, Shaly Werdel

Bronze Teams & individuals–
Creed Speaking - Danika Gordon, Sturgis

Dairy Cattle Evaluation - McCook Central; Cait McGregor, Tanner Peterson, Blake Pulse, and Brianna Schock

Ag Sales - Rapid City; Colton Riley (silver individually), Seth Shorb, Bridger Johnson, and Cody Rausch

Agronomy – Highmore; Taylor Ashdown, Jharrett Bloomenrader, Blake Farstveet, and Halle Kroeplin

Extemporaneous Public Speaking – Matt Bogue, Beresford

Environmental and Natural Resources – Parkston; Jared Tiede, Trenton Weber, Brady Albrecht, and Nate Doering

Food Science and Technology - McCook Central; Natalie Gottlob, Emily Bies, Ciara Rotherm and Jacy Pulse

Marketing – Kimball; Sage Pulse, Hannah Surat, and Amya Swett

Parliamentary Procedure – Harrisburg; Jessica Cain, Makenzie Voss, Josh Tassler, Sydney Wood, Allyson Beninga, and Nicole Hudson

Vet Science - McCook Central; Phoebe Kaffar, Morgan Koepsell, Emma Norris and Taylor Reif

Nursery Landscape -Redfield: Dalton Howe, Zach Jordan, Hunter Wright and Drew Masat

Additional Agriscience Fair Silver Emblem winners:
Sydney Grasma, McCook Central
Emma Heinz, McCook Central
Madisen Koepsell, McCook Central
Griffin Stoffel, McCook Central
Gabby Feterl, McCook Central
Sadye Roesler, McCook Central
Hadley Stiefvater, McCook Central
Nathan Buisker, Sioux Valley

Congratulations!! You make South Dakota FFA Proud!

State Leadership CDEs

FFA members are working hard and getting nervous as they look to compete in the 11 fall Leadership Career Development Events. District qualifying events wrapped up mid-November and State Leadership Development Events are quickly approaching, December 3-4, in Pierre.  The speaking, parliamentary procedure and leadership skills, as well as confidence needed for these events take time to build but last students a lifetime.

In addition, our Star Partners will have Career Carnival booths there to interact and engage students between events as they learn about the career opportunities their new skills are preparing them for.  AT&T will also host a “Cyberbullying” workshop for students to attend, once they have completed their competitions.

The SD FFA Foundation, through specific sponsors and the general fund, provides the State Leadership banquet meal for nearly 600 student participants in 11 events, awards for the top individuals and teams, and travel scholarships for those that advance to nationals next October.

Thank you to the sponsors and volunteers who help make District and State Leadership Events happen- you are appreciated and more are needed!  If you are interested in sponsoring State Leadership, contact: , or helping judge an event, contact:


Featured Fundraisers

Monsanto’s Community Grants
Make a difference for FFA!  Monsanto is running its America’s Farmers Grow Communities, a program that gives farmers the opportunity to win $2,500, for their favorite community nonprofit organization (nominate your local FFA chapter).  One nonprofit community organization in each eligible county will receive $2,500. It’s up to farmers to help decide where the money goes - sign up by November 30th! Applicants must farm, and live in the county with the organization they nominate. It only takes about two minutes to apply for those farmers residing in one of 1331 eligible counties in 41 states (most SD counties are eligible).  Go to:

Leave a Legacy
Did you know we accept non-cash gifts such as equipment, land and grain? If you still happen to have some of last year's harvest left in your bins and are struggling to determine how to handle it, we would love to talk to you about helping FFA members achieve the yield of Premier Leadership! The process is simple and only takes a minute to complete--we are here to help you make it happen

SD FFA Foundation

Plan a gift to the SD FFA Foundation
in your annual budget.

You can donate online here or mail a donation to: SD FFA Foundation, 39393 133rd St., Bath, SD 57427

For more information, please contact or call (605) 765-4865
© 2017 South Dakota FFA Foundation, Inc. 

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