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Boyceville FFA bestows honors at 2015 Awards Night

BOYCEVILLE – The Boyceville Future Farmers of America chapter celebrated the culmination of another successful year recently, honoring the achievements and accomplishments of its members at the annual awards program.

The Boyceville chapter recognized many of its membership as well as community members and organizations involved with FFA at its 2015 Awards Night held Sunday evening, April 19 in the Boyceville High School commons.

This year’s featured speaker was State FFA Section One officer Ethan Dado. He is a member of the Amery FFA Chapter.

One of the most prestigious and meaningful honors bestowed each year is that of Honorary Chapter FFA Degree. The award is given annually to a community member(s) or organization that has provided outstanding service to the Boyceville FFA chapter. This year Stewart Bartz was selected as the 2014-15 Honorary Chapter Degree recipient.

The 88-member chapter recognized Bartz for his dedication, support, and willingness to assist the FFA members. He demonstrated this by being an active member of the FFA Alumni, helping with the auction, Dunn County Fair and scholarships. Bartz also helped to organize the Food for American program and is the Alumni’s treasurer. Sentinel Cheyenne Reed presented Bartz with a plaque to commemorate the honor.

In addition, the Boyceville FFA recognized four of its own members with the chapter’s three highest awards.

The Star Greenhand, which honors the most active first-year member in all phases of chapter activities, was presented to Bryce Larson. This young man has been very active with the Dunn County Fair where he showed swine, participated in the District Soil Evaluation Contest and was a member of the Livestock Evaluation Team at the Ag Techniques Contest. In addition, Bryce sold fruit and helped with nature trail improvements.

Another deserving member was honored with this year’s Star Chapter FFA Degree plaque. Brad Mounce earned the Star Chapter FFA Degree, given annually to the most active and involved second-year member(s). Mounce has taken advantage of every opportunity to participate in a wide variety of chapter activities, according to sentinel Cheyenne Reed, who made the presentation. Brad Mounce has been a leader in the chapter’s fruit sales fundraiser where he has been the top seller for the past two years. He also helped on the chapter’s community-service leaf raking project, was a member of the Ag Mechanics team that competed at UW-River Falls and organized the tractor drive for FFA week.

Advisor Glenn Knudtson presented the Outstanding Senior Award to a pair of deserving young ladies – Kendall Wold and Kayla Nelson, this year’s secretary and treasurer respectively. The award, which is sponsored by DeKalb, is given to a fouth-year member who has demonstrated outstanding scholarship and leadership with significant dedication and achievement to agricultural programs. Knudtson cited both Wold and Nelson for their dedication and participation in virtually all of the chapter’s activities including Sectional Leadership Workshops and the National Convention in Louisville. Both have been active members and have helped with the fruit sale, showed livestock at the Dunn County Fair and attended the Summer FFA Leadership Camp the past three years.

Degree Winners

29 first-year FFA agricultural students earned Greenhand Degrees and bronze pins. They are: Alec Schaffer, Alexis Meixner, Alyssa Stuart, Austin Stuart, Brandon Kenefick, Brandon Stai, Bryce Boda, Bryce Larson, Buddy Hanestad, Cody Frederick, Cody Lipke, Colton Johnson, Cooper Boesl, Emily Voelker, Emma Harnisch, Gavin Engebretson, Gavin Olson, Hunter Lipke, Hunter Spenle, Jaslyn Krueger, Justin Malean, Kailee Krenz, Kylie Krueger, Luke Knudtson, Mariah Schlottman, Nick Bekkum, Nikki Herdahl, Satina Chilson, and Shiann Wagner.

To qualify for the Greenhand Award, members must be enrolled in an agricultural class, have a SAE program, know the history of the FFA and its creed, know the duties and responsibilities of a FFA member, and pass a written test. The bronze pins presented to each successful candidate bears the FFA emblem and represents hardness and endurance, qualities it is hoped will carry each member far in the FFA organization.

Chapter FFA Degrees were conferred upon 20 second-year members: Aaron Giebel, Abby Kegan, Abby Lorenz, Bradley Mounce, Brandon Malean, Brody Behling, Carlee Schultz, Jacob Diller, Jason Retzloff, Jerod Nelson, Kayla Hoff, Kylee Bird, Levi Williams, Madysn Riek, Michael Chich, Reyse Klatt, Robbie Thorson, Sam Retz, Tristan Talmage and Tyler Krueger.

Recipients of the Chapter FFA Degree are required to have an active SAE project, have been a FFA member for two years, led a group discussion, and have participated in FFA activities. Chapter FFA Degree winners each received a silver pin and certificate.

Academic Distinction

Kendall Wold and Kevin Clark presented Chapter Scholarship Pins to those members who have maintained a grade point average of a “B” or better and have made the honor roll for two terms during the year. A number of members were recognized for having been previous recipients of a chapter Scholarship Pin as well as the current academic year. Those so honored were: Abby Lorenz, Austin Wolfe, Brooklyn Blaser, Jake Lake, Kayla Hoff, Kayla Nelson, Kendall Wold, Madysn Riek, Michaella Hillman and Tyler Krueger.

First-time Scholarship Pin recipients included: Abby Kegan, Alexis Meixner, Alyssa Stuart, Colton Johnson, Danielle Keller, Emily Voelker, Hunter Anderson, Jenna Beyrer, Jerod Nelson, Kyle Holden, Kylee Bird, Kylie Krueger, Luke Knudtson, Mariah Schlottman, Michael Chich, Mitch Leach, Nik Bekkum, Satina Chilson, Tyler Stroo and Brady Schutts.

Top Salespeople

Each year the local chapter has fundraising activities. This year the fundraiser was the chapter’s annual fruit sale. Proceeds from the fruit sales are used in a variety of ways including the purchase of awards for the program. The top salesperson award went to Michaella Hillman for the third year in a row, Jerod Nelson was second, Brandon Kenefick finished third and Bradley Mounce was fourth.

Retiring Officers

Leadership pins were presented by advisor Glenn Knudtson to all the retiring officers: Jake Erickson, President; Kevin Clark, Vice President; Kendall Wold, Secretary; Kayla Nelson, Treasurer; Cheyenne Reed, Sentinel; Brooklynn Blaser, Reporter; and Sam Retz, Parliamentarian.

Proficiency Awards

There are several areas in which members may compete in the development of specialized skills in agriculture. These proficiency awards recognize individual members for their projects in the different areas.

Proficiency award winners in the various areas are: Jake Lake, Technical Mechanics; Noah Wyss, Ag Mechanics; Robbie Thorson, Diversified Livestock Production; Jason Retzloff, Forage Production; Sam Retz, Dairy Entrepreneurship; Brad Mounce, Ag Engineering; Satina Chilson, Specialty Animal Production; Jarred Marzofka, Dairy Placement; Cody Frederick, Diversified Crop Production; Sam Hellmann, Specialty Crop Production; Jenna Beyrer, Vegetable Production; and Michaella Hillmann, Agricultural Sales.

Ag Contest Awards

Several members competed in contests throughout the year.

Boyceville had 45 students compete in this year’s district soil evaluation held last October in Dunn County. Boyceville took first place against six other schools. The top four local individuals were: Brock Swenson (1st), Hunter Anderson (2nd), Kevin Clark (3rd), and Jake Lake (4th).

The Ag Techniques Contest at UW-River Falls drew several local participants. Wildlife Management – Brock Swenson (Excellent Rating), Kailee Krenz (Good) and Nicole Herdahl (Good); Ag Mechanics – Brad Mounce (Excellent), Levi Williams (Excellent), Robbie Thorson (Good), and Noah Wyss (Good); Livestock Evaluation – Abby Kegan (Excellent), Cooper Boesl (Good), Bryce Larson (Good) and Luke Knudtson (Good).

Alumni Scholarships Awarded

The Boyceville FFA Alumni awarded seven seniors with $250 scholarships, the proceeds of which were raised through the annual consignment auction. Stewart Bartz and Jeremy Bartos, representing the alumni association, announced that the scholarship recipients were Brooklyn Blaser, Cheyenne Reed, Dylan Lamm, Jake Erickson, Kayla Nelson, Kendall Wold and Michaella Hillman.

New Officers

The installation of the new officers for the upcoming year concluded the ceremony. The 2015-16 officers are: President-Kevin Clark; Vice President-Jenna Beyrer; Secretary-Abby Lorenz; Treasurer-Sam Hellmann; Sentinel-Colton Johnson; Reporter-Sam Retz; and Parliamentarian-Jake Lake.