South Dakota FFA Foundation, Inc.
SD FFA Foundation Email Newsletter ~ | ~ Volume 8, Issue 3 ~ | ~ September 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!Transform

Director’s Message:

What a great South Dakota State Fair! Thanks to great weather and great activities, the fair set a new attendance record. Each and every year we are thrilled to be a part of our great state fair. We get to meet so many great alumni and FFA supporters, and fairgoers get to enjoy the remarkable Ag Adventure Center and the projects South Dakota FFA members complete.  What better way do we have to advocate for our youth and the future of agriculture than getting our students out there?

Thank you to everyone who stopped by the buildings or shows and shared your favorite FFA memories! We enjoyed seeing and meeting literally thousands of proud former members. We are continually striving to RECONNECT to build a community of former members who believe in and want to support future generations of agriculture leaders. Please contact your local advisor to see how you can help make a positive difference in the lives of FFA members by developing their premier leadership, personal growth, and career success.

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

We Believe in the Future of Agriculture ...

The SD FFA Foundation believes in the future of agriculture. That's why we support awards, events, activities, and scholarships for agriculture programs and FFA members. Thank you for believing and helping make these things possible! EVERY donation, big or small, individual or corporate, is valued by the SD FFA Foundation and the members it impacts. Ashlynn

Ashlynn Burke, Willow Lake, Senior opens up about her experience, “The FFA helped me become a better leader by showing me a team is only as strong as your weakest link and that to be a leader you have to be open minded and passionate.  FFA got me out of my comfort zone by giving me the opportunity to meet people from all over the country, whether at National Convention or Washington Leadership Conference.  Our sponsors gave me the opportunity to go to Washington Leadership Conference and every year helps sponsor our team to national convention, so it’s more affordable. Thanks for giving me and others the opportunity to grow in FFA!”


Upcoming events:

  • September 20- Blue Jackets Bright Futures FFA Jacket Program - student jacket applications due
  • September 27 - Northeast Area Land & Range Judging, Webster;
    Western Area Land & Range Judging, Wall;
  • October 1 – FFA membership rosters due, Brookings
  • October 3 - Southeast Area Land Judging, Colton area
  • October 4 -Central Area Land & Range Judging, Wessington Springs
  • October 25-28 - National FFA Convention, Indianapolis, Indiana
  • November 2 – Jackrabbit Invite Leadership CDE, Brookings
  • November 6 – District 1 CDE’s, Watertown District 2 CDE’s, Brookings
  • November 8 – District 6 CDE’s, Miller
  • November 13 - Districts 4 Leadership CDE's, Mitchell
  • November – Other District FFA Leadership Career Development Events - dates coming!
  • November 17 – All State Leadership CDE paperwork due, Brookings
  • December 3-4 - State Leadership Career Development Events, Pierre

Coming your way ...

State FFA officers will be starting chapter visits soon.  They will visit all 90 FFA chapters in SD between September and December.  Their 1/2 day visit at each school will focus on Teamwork, Personal Growth, Ag Advocacy, Ag Ed Basics, SAE, and FFA Beyond high school.

FFA Ag Adventure Center was the BUZZ at the fair!

Everyone was talking about the new FFA Ag Adventure Center at the SD State Fair! The modern look helped hands on learning abound.  With hens laying eggs, sows farrowing, eggs hatching, bottle calves being fed, MeDairy - the life size cow to milk, soil exhibits, the Cargill Technology Center, 360 dairy & pork experiences, and a grocery store meat case, there was lots of excitement and educating going on!  FFA members shared messages about modern agriculture practices, food safety, and animal care through fun activities and exhibits.  The building was continuously full.  Thank you to East River Electric, SD Division of the Midwest Dairy Association, SD Farm Bureau Women, and Sanford for each stepping up to provide a theme day with hands on educational and fun activities, which made each day a new experience in the Adventure Center.  Thank you to the $1,000 plus sponsors who made the renovations possible with financial and inkind contributions:  

Ag Processing Inc.

Marvin and Corinne Wastell

AgFirst Farmers Cooperative

McFleeg Inc.

Cargill Inc.

Midwest Dairy Association


Pipestone Systems 

Citibank (South Dakota), N.A.

QC Supply


Raven Industries

Crystal Spring Hog Equipment


East River Electric

SD Association of Cooperatives

Easy Cattle Co, Inc.

SD Community Foundation

Edleman Ranch

SD Corn Utilization Council

Farm Bureau Financial

SD Farmers Union

Farm Credit Services of America

SD FFA Chapters

First Dakota National Bank

SD FFA Star Partners

Fishback Financial Corporation

SD Soybean R & P Council

Gro Master Inc.

Tom Heine Cattle Company

K & S Hanson, Inc.

USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service

Kendal and Janice Thompson


Legend Seeds, Inc.


State FAirState Fair

State FairState Fair

Do what you love. Love what you do.  TEACH AG!TAG

National Teach Ag Day is September 21, 2017.  Please encourage young people to consider agricultural education as a career, because without them, there won't be enough ag teachers to keep our programs going. The shortage of qualified agriculture teachers is the greatest challenge facing FFA and agricultural education.

Student projects showcased at the State Fair

288 FFA members exhibiting 985 exhibits in beef, sheep, swine, dairy, rabbit, dairy and meat goats, horticulture, ag mechanics and agriscience at the state fair highlighted student SAE projects! 

See the results here!

Land and Range judging teaches appreciation of Natural ResourcesRange

This summer I attended the SD Rangeland Days on prairie north of Wall. What a rejuvenating experience!  I was again reminded of the variety of plants and animals on our prairie and the care it takes from farmers & ranchers to keep them all healthy. September is the time FFA members learn to identify land characteristic and slope, range plants and growth patterns, and how to be good stewards of these resources, managing them for the future. We are seeking sponsorships to assist in sending the winning regional teams to the National Land and Range Contests in Oklahoma. Thanks to Hefty Seed Company, Lyle Perman, Belle Fourche Livestock Exchange, and Philip Livestock Auction for each sponsoring winning teams to advance to nationals.   If you have any sponsor ideas for the additional land & range teams, please share with us. 

Thanks to LeRoy and Cathie Draine for sponsoring 3 - $100 scholarships for the 1st place range judging individuals, and the SD Soil Health Coalition for sponsoring 4 - $100 scholarships for the 1st place land judging individuals.

Thanks to all the sponsors that help make FFA livestock shows and awards possible:  

State Fair shirts

Dakotaland Feeds, AT&T, CHS Foundation, RDO Equipment, Croplan by Winfield United, C & B Operations, Monsanto, DuPont-Pioneer, Farm Credit Services of America, East River Electric, Twin City Northland Ford Dealers, SD Wheat Growers, North Central Farmers Elevator, SD Corn Utilization Council; SD Farm Bureau, US Army/Army ROTC; Butler Machinery, ADM-Benson Quinn, Hanson Associates; BASF; BankWest; DeJong Ranch, Diamond V, Stangl Shorthorns, Cattle Business Weekly, Midwest Ag & Vet Supply, Peterson Livestock, Larsen Livestock, Team Johnke, C & M Cattle, Wilson Sheep Company, Whetstone Commodities, Rasmussen Show Livestock, Cargill of Vienna, Lazy J Bar Ranch, Harringa Dairy, Antelope Pass Ranch, Valley Queen Cheese Factory, Thompson family, Knutson Suffolks, Jakober Limousin, Rusty JAK, LLC, Odden Cattle Company & Odden Trucking.

Help us find past FFA members!       

The SD FFA Foundation wants to reconnect with past members who believe in the future of agriculture... we know there are LOTS out there.  It's more than just looking for financial supporters - it's finding people who will openly share with others what FFA has done for them.  We need to share the message that we believe in the future of agriculture, just like the creed says. 

Please share names, addresses and/or email addresses of past members with:  We want to invite them to get active again by judging, coaching, mentoring, or financing local and state FFA activities.


Coming your way ...

State FFA officers will be starting chapter visits soon.  They will visit all 90 FFA chapters in SD between September and December.  Their 1/2 day visit at each school will focus on Teamwork, Personal Growth, Ag Advocacy, Ag Ed Basics, SAE, and FFA Beyond high school.


Watch SD FFA members discover "I Can. We Will. TOGETHER WE ARE STRONG" at this year’s National FFA Convention I can. We will.

October 25-28, 63,000 plus leaders, including several hundred from SD, will gather to learn about careers in the agriculture industry, compete for scholarships, volunteer in the community and shape the future of the National FFA Organization.  It will be a celebration of FFA and an experience full of educational relevancy. During the National FFA Convention, the streets of Indianapolis will be flooded with blue jackets as students spread the message of agriculture, engage in National Days of Service, participate in interactive workshops, check out the expo, are inspired by motivating sessions, take part in rigorous career development events and meet fellow FFA members.  Watch on RFD TV, and catch updates on the National FFA facebook page!

Congratulations to the National FFA Finalist from SD!
SD students are growing their talents and standing out. This year seven SD students are proficiency finalists because of their hard work on their Supervised Agricultural Experience Project, six students will showcase their musical talents in the National FFA Band, and one student team will compete in the national Agriscience Fair as finalists because of their strong scientific research.
Good luck as you represent SD at Nationals!

National Band & Chorus members:







De Smet


















Proficiency finalists:
Kohl Michael Miller - McCook Central, Diversified Horticulture – E/P
Jaclynn Knutson – Viborg, Grain Production - Entrepreneurship

National Chapter finalists:
McCook Central & Viborg Hurley - 1 Star
Winner FFA - 2 Star

Agriscience finalists:
Ella Stiefvater McCook Central, Animal Science, Division 1
Abigail Blagg and Sophia Kaffar McCook Central FFA , Animal Science, Division 2
Hadley Stiefvater McCook Central, Animal Science, Division 3
Kayle Lauck McCook Central, Environmental Systems, Division 1
Gabby Feterl and Sadye Roesler McCook Central, Environmental Systems, Division 2
Hunter Eide Gettysburg, Environmental Systems, Division 3
Morgan Kohl Watertown Area, Environmental Systems, Division 5
Griffin Stoffel McCook Central, Food Products Systems, Division 1
Catherine Whaler and Megan Stiefvater McCook Central, Food Products Systems, Division 2
Nathan Buisker Sioux Valley, Plant Systems, Division 3
Jace Haven Northwestern Area, Power Structures Systems, Division 1
Rylee Klinkhammer and Tanner Peterson McCook Central, Power Stuctures Systems, Division 4
Madisen Koepsell McCook Central, Social Science, Division 1
Sydney Grasma and Emma Heinz McCook Central, Social Science, Division 2
Kadon Leddy Milbank , Social Science, Division 5

Featured FundraiserJackets

Give a deserving student an FFA Jacket!

To its owner, the FFA jacket is a physical reminder of the personal accomplishments achieved through the organization - a symbol of self-confidence, commitment, dedication, and nostalgia for all who wore the corduroy.

Did you know there are many FFA members that don't have or can't afford an FFA jacket? That's why the SD FFA Foundation created the FFA Blue Jackets Bright Futures program. In this program, the number of jackets given out each year is the number of jackets donated from supporters. Last year, we awarded 236 jackets and have a need for more. This year we hope to award 300 FFA jackets, but we need your help to do that. It's easy to donate online! Each jacket donation is $75. Hurry, the deadline is September 20!

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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