OK FFA Foundation's Chapter Trust Fund Tips $1 Million Mark With Help From Blue & Gold SausageWed, 01 May 2019 12:33:47 CDT
Over the past two years, Brett Ramsey of Blue & Gold Sausage, who currently serves as chairman of the Oklahoma FFA Foundation, has overseen an effort spearheaded by FFA chapters across the state to raise money for what is known as the Chapter Trust Program. The funds invested in this program are earmarked to help defer some of the costs associated with the annual Oklahoma State FFA Convention. According to Ramsey, this effort resulted in tipping that endowment over the $1 million mark. Ramsey took time Wednesday during the 93rd Annual Oklahoma State FFA Convention in Oklahoma City to speak with Radio Oklahoma Ag Network Farm Director Ron Hays about the success of this recent campaign. You can listen to their complete conversation by clicking or tapping the LISTEN BAR below at the bottom of the page.
“The Chapter Trust Program has been in existence since 1990. As the years progress, expenses often outrun what money can be raised. We got to the point a year ago where we decided we needed to speed the process up,” Ramsey explained. “So, we went to the chapters and said you need to be more aggressive about your self-support, your own giving. Well, a year ago, every chapter in the state finally established their own Chapter Trust.”
Ramsey proposed that if each Chapter in the state could come up with $409 to contribute to their trust fund, Blue & Gold Sausage, as part of its 50th anniversary celebration, would donate $500 to the top 100 fundraising chapters. Altogether, this pushed the Chapter Trust Fund up to the $1 million mark.
“That generates in the neighborhood of $50,000 a year to help pay bills for the convention,” Ramsey noted.
As a whole, Ramsey says the chapters statewide essentially doubled their annual giving to meet this goal. He says the Foundation hopes to leverage this campaign as motivation for the association’s sponsors.
Ramsey remarked, “We hope to double down and use that as leverage with our corporate givers - we want to go to them and say ‘these people are helping themselves. You need to help them, too.’”
Under the past leadership of the FFA Foundation’s former executive director, Kendall Brashears, and his successor, Holly Blakely, the Foundation’s corporate exposure has grown leaps and bounds as new companies come to realize the value of partnering with the Oklahoma FFA. Through this growing support, Ramsey says the Foundation’s leadership hopes to eventually expand its reach beyond its original mission to underwrite the convention and help finance more programs and have and even greater impact of FFA members’ experience in the organization.
“They have figured out we create very good employees and that’s why we’ve become more attractive as time has gone by,” he said, “and we want to continue to expand on that.”
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