South Dakota FFA Foundation, Inc.
SD FFA Foundation Email Newsletter ~ | ~ Volume 8, Issue 7 ~ | ~ February 2018

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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:

The excitement is building in South Dakota FFA. On Saturday, FFA chapters across the country began celebrating National FFA Week! This is an opportunity for FFA members, alumni and you, FFA supporters, to advocate for agricultural education and FFA. Please share what FFA is and the impact it had on you.

Some of my favorite FFA memories involve making pancakes & eggs at 6 a.m. for our businessman's breakfast. I was proud to share what our chapter was doing. FFA chapters are celebrating the impact through a variety of activities including agriculture olympics, appreciation breakfasts and service learning projects. Have fun with FFA in your community, take your jacket to work, and share your FFA story on social media. As we celebrate National FFA week and also FFA’s 90th year in SD, I had a surprise opportunity to visit with an FFA member from the 1940’s – Cecil shared how he keeps his treasured FFA jacket in his cedar chest … read below for the details!

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

Because of people behind the scenes, FFA members find and strengthen their voice

The SD FFA Foundation believes in the future of agriculture, and helping our young people grow. Members recognize how Agriculture Education impacts their lives … Tanner

Tanner Peterson, McCook Central Jr says, “FFA has taught me how to be involved and put effort toward the events I do and to be successful. With my participation in WLC, Leadership Development Events, and land judging, I have developed skills in decision making, which I will use forever.  I am proud to represent my chapter and even had the honor to represent my state in many of these events.” The SD FFA Foundation board works hard, because we strengthen the voices that will speak for the future of our industry and accomplish great things for agriculture!  Thanks to all our sponsors behind the scenes at FFA events, providing the necessities to help students.

EVERY donation, big or small, individual or corporate, is valued by the SD FFA Foundation and helps members grow in leadership.


Upcoming events:

  • February 17-24 – National FFA Week
  • February 26 - Proficiency Judging, Brookings, SD
  • March 1 – State FFA  & WLC scholarship applications due, Brookings
  • March 2 – Redfield CDE
  • March 5 – National Chapter Award applications due, Brookings
  • March 5 – Howard CDE
  • March 10 – State Officer & Ambassador applications due, Brookings
  • March 13 – Watertown CDE
  • March 13 - Platte Geddes CDE
  • March 20 - Miller CDE
  • March 20- Flandreau CDE
  • March 23 – Little I, Brookings
  • March 23 - Enhancing Team Performance Lock-In, Hartford
  • March 28 -  Tri-Valley CDE
  • April 3 - 11 – 3 pm, State Agri-Science Fair, Mitchell, SD
  • April 5 – Groton CDE
  • April 6 – Lennox CDE
  • April 15-17 – State FFA Convention, Brookings
  • July 30 – Aug 2 – SDAAE Conference, Rapid City


Advocate for Ag Ed during National FFA Week

February 17-24 is National FFA week, an ideal time to reconnect with the organization that may have played a role in where you are today. Show everyone you know that you support the FFA and are FOREVER BLUE!  Share your FFA pride with others -

  • Drape your jacket on the back of your chair at work, hang it in your car for all to see, or display it on your coat rack at the office.
  • Post an old photo of you in your FFA jacket as your Facebook profile photo.
  • Share the South Dakota FFA Foundation facebook posts, to increase our # of followers
  • Park a trailer full of hay by the road, and spray paint FFA on it
  • Wear FFA blue on Friday the 23rd along with people across the country.
  • Share your AgEd/FFA experience on social media.
  • Run an ‘FFA Week challenge’ at work – put up a sign about FFA, ask for employee donations and get your company to match the total donations employees make! Send in your donations, marked as FFA week challenge - we'll highlight companies who participated in the next newsletter!

Help promote American agriculture, and share the positive things FFA and Agriculture, Food & Natural Resources programs provide for our youth.

Business & Industry Visits  

The South Dakota FFA State Officers will hold their annual Business & Industry Visits on March 5-7.  You may see them as they travel through Aberdeen, Bowdle, Gettysburg, Faulkton, Watertown, Milbank, Beresford, Canton, Parker, Yankton, and Lennox.  This is a great opportunity for them to:

  1. Learn more about various businesses representing South Dakota agriculture's diversity.
  2. Learn about the future needs of the industry.
  3. Share what agriculture education classes/FFA are doing to help meet the needs of South Dakota’s future.

We EngageJOIN US

Support the FFA!  Anyone who believes in the importance of FFA & agricultural education can be a member.  Even if you never wore a blue jacket yourself, you’re welcome to join the South Dakota FFA Alumni Association as we prepare students for a brighter future. For more information contact: Dawn M. Nagel, SD FFA Alumni Coordinator,

A Flash back in FFA History … a 1940’s SD FFA jacket …Cecil

As we celebrate 100 years since the Smith Hughes Act which started Agriculture Education, and 90 years of FFA in SD, has us looking at history for lessons learned.  An unexpected phone call after a recent press release highlighting the 342 FFA jackets the Foundation awarded to FFA members this past fall connected me with some great SD FFA history! Cecil called to share he still has his FFA jacket from 1947 after all these years, lovingly kept in the family cedar chest. I was excited to see this jacket! 

We met, and Cecil put the jacket on, saying, “It doesn’t fit quite like it used to.” His jacket is very similar to new FFA jackets today, made of the same FFA blue corduroy now slightly faded, has the clasp on the sides to tighten them up, the button on the sleeves, and his name and an emblem on the front.  The back has an emblem, South Dakota and his chapter: “Eastern” embroidered on it.  There are a few jacket differences:  snaps down the front instead of a zipper, the emblems say Vocational Agriculture instead of Agriculture Education; and the emblem on the back is very different, definitely not the machine stitched emblems on today’s jackets.  Front & back emblems are actually different from each other. 

The FFA jacket not only unifies current members in a long-standing tradition and reminds them that they are part of something larger than themselves. It unifies all current and past members in this tradition and serves as an article of faith, honor and pride.   We’ll share more of Cecil’s story in another issue.

Advocating for Agriculture Education at the state capitol

Nearly 50 FFA district and state FFA officers met with state legislators and other government officials in Pierre, January 17-18 to share how FFA is helping them ignite their interest in leadership. Thank you to our continued and new sponsors (listed on our website at of the FFA Legislative Breakfast!  Students visited the state capital in action learning about state government and shared their leadership experiences and the need for Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources programs, so that FFA chapters can continue.


State Convention is coming!

The South Dakota FFA Association and Foundation are deep in the heart of State Convention planning for 2018. Mark your calendars for April 15-17th and check next month for details. Sunday night there will be a highlight of sponsors, proficiency awards, past state officer recognition and the keynote speaker. Monday are the Career Development Events, workshops, Career Carnival, State Degree banquet, scholarships, National FFA officer speaking, and over 270 students will get their State FFA Degrees.  Tuesday will be the Career Development results and the election of officers.  Join us for the celebration!  We are still short sponsors for several areas.  If you are interested in helping young leaders learn I CAN, WE WILL BE STRONGER TOGETHER -  contact: to see what is still available.

FFA Career CarnivalCareer Carnival

South Dakota’s number one industry is agriculture and we produce some of the best crops and livestock in the world – and we need to raise our voice.  Help future agricultural leaders find their voice for agriculture knowledge to share about the ag industry!  We would like to invite businesses and commodity organizations to host a carnival game and interact one on one with the next generation of producers, leaders and consumers, during the SD FFA State Convention.  Have a game to draw them in and then provide them the knowledge to promote and defend the agriculture industry, as well as possibly choose an agriculture career.  The South Dakota State FFA will be hosting a Career Carnival for high school students on Monday, April 16, during the 2018 State FFA Convention on the SDSU campus.  Cost is $250/booth - contact for more information.

Featured Fundraiserslicense plate

Drive with FFA Pride!
Put a FFA License plate on your vehicle!

  1. When renewing your license plates or buying plates for a new vehicle at your County Treasurer's office, ask for “organization plates.”  Plates are free for new issues and $10 for renewals.
  2. Purchase a set of SD FFA license plate decals from the SD FFA Foundation at 39393 133rd St., Bath, SD 57427, 605-765-4865, or Decals are $15 for FFA Alumni and supporters of the FFA and Agriculture Education. Make checks payable to the SD FFA Foundation.
  3. Put the decals on your organization license plates.

Zoetis supports Local FFA chapters
South Dakota FFA chapters will again have the opportunity to earn funds through the Zoetis FFA Support Program starting in February. Eligible Zoetis accounts complete an enrollment form (by May 6), and receive a 1 percent rebate on all Zoetis cattle products, excluding MGA® purchases, from Feb. 1 to April 30, 2018. The rebate can be donated to local FFA chapter(s) of their choice.  Talk to your local Zoetis rep and ask them to sign up for this program! Thank you!!

SD FFA Foundation

Invest in the future -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
© 2018 South Dakota FFA Foundation, Inc. 

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