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Thursday, April 28, 2011

It Begins with IDAHO!

By Wyatt DeJong, Central Region Vice President

“It Begins with YOU!” was the theme of this year’s Idaho State Leadership Conference (SLC). It was certainly an amazing time, and what made it even more special to me was the fact that Idaho was my first state convention this year. When I arrived in Twin Falls, I quickly began to realize just how excited everyone was and how relaxed they were at the same time. So many hours, days, weeks and months had been poured into the creation of this event and it was now time to highlight the success of members and celebrate the value of FFA, agricultural education and agriculture.

The conference was held April 6-9. From the moment the lights went down for the opening session to the tap of the last gavel, this SLC was jam packed with professionalism, excitement, celebrations and fun--all while having the attitude of service. One thing that really impressed me was the involvement of the districts/regions in Idaho. I was able to meet with several of the district officers from the South Magic Valley District while they were setting up their district display that highlighted the officers, schools and agriculture within the district. Tanner and his fellow teammates worked hard to showcase the hard work that they had done and the agricultural products that came from their district. They even showed how trout production is a big part of where they are from by bringing their small fish named Rupert. Each district does their best with their own displays and then the winning district officer team will go on to be in charge of designing the state display at the national FFA convention.

As members began to arrive, I quickly saw how much of an impact that the 2009-2010 team has had on the members and the state this past year. Travis, Amanda, Rachael, Sidnee, Stacie and Joe all have such a desire to give to others and to do it with a smile and professional demeanor. Each one of them totally rocked out their own retiring address and left me thinking about how I can do more and be more for others and agriculture.

http://a8.sphotos.ak.fbcdn.net/hphotos-ak-snc6/206127_109943195755777_105619869521443_104781_7534996_n.jpgThroughout the week, I was able to meet with the great individuals who ran for state office, and I know that each one will make an impact this year. For six of them, they are about to begin quite a journey as state officers. Jake, Anna, Erin, Nate, Cara and Tierra are going to be rather outstanding if I do say so myself! I wish them the best as they go through this year and devote 365 days to Idaho FFA.

The Idaho SLC wrapped up, and all of the props were put away. As we walked out the doors, everyone began looking over all of the successes that was had over the past few days and the past year. My plane did not leave until the next morning so I was able to go around and check out the beauty of Idaho and see Perrine Bridge, Shoshone Falls, the Balanced Rock and even an alligator farm! Idaho is filled with natural beauty and it was amazing to see those things but it was the members and other people that I met that I will always remember. It Begins with Idaho!


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