National FFA Pres Breanna Holbert Shares her Perspective on the Organization that Changed her LifeThu, 25 Oct 2018 11:36:06 CDT
During the 91st National FFA Convention in Indianapolis this week, Radio Oklahoma Ag Network Farm Director Ron Hays had the chance to sit down with the 2018 National FFA President, Breanna Holbert of California, who for the past year has led the National FFA Organization and its more than 650,000 student-members nationwide. You can listen to their complete conversation by clicking or tapping the LISTEN BAR below at the bottom of the page.
Holbert never expected to actually be elected to a national office with the FFA. According to her, hearing her name called at last year's convention came as much as a surprise to her as it did everyone in attendance watching the installment ceremony of the new national officer team.
"At that point I was thinking about where was my next exit. I did not think I was going to be elected and I didn't want people to see me cry," she remembered. "But, then I heard my name and I felt my whole body just- my heart just dropped to my feet as I ran up that stage. I still think about it today and it reminds me of how I want to keep that same passion I had that day, every single day until the end of my year."
Historically speaking, Holbert will tell you, she was not your typical candidate. Holbert grew up in a predominantly urban setting in California's Central Valley where she says she struggled with an unstable homelife. According to her, she had no real knowledge of what agriculture was or what the FFA had to offer until she entered her agricultural education class for the first time. She credits her ag teacher at the time for encouraging her to explore her potential as a leader and all the opportunities that FFA could offer in developing her leadership skills. That led her to an experience full of public speaking contests, floriculture design contests and one that fed her interest in horticulture and plant science.
"It's transformed my career path," she said. "I want to become an ag teacher, now. That's how ag-ed and FFA has taken me from a student who had no idea what she wanted to do, to being a ag-educator with no ag background."
Hoblert says this past year at the helm of the FFA Organization has been nothing short of whirl-wind, having travelled over 100,000 miles to meet thousands of people across 39 different states. But to her, it has been an experience that has allowed her the opportunity to gain perspective on the world and the part that agriculture has played in it.
"This sounds cliché, but FFA literally changed my life," she said. "I give everything to this organization. Every single piece of me I owe back to this organization for treating me and other students like family."
One again, we are taking pictures in and around the 2018 National FFA Convention- click or tap here to check out the National Convention Album on FLICKR. By the way- we continue a tradition as several state officers of the Oklahoma FFA will be taking pictures for us during the course of the meeting.
Our exclusive coverage of the 2018 National FFA Convention in Indianapolis October 24-27 is a service of ITC Great Plains, Your Energy Superhighway- learn more about this high voltage, transmission only utility and their commitment to the communities they serve which is the cornerstone of their business - Click or tap here for their webpage. We also appreciate the support of the Oklahoma FFA Association and the Oklahoma FFA Alumni Association. Click or tap here for more information about one of the top states in the US in the FFA- the Oklahoma FFA Association. FFA is a student organization for high school-aged students interested in agriculture and leadership. Oklahoma FFA impacts the lives of over 27,000 members in 359 chapters across the state.
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