Bullard FFA reflects on successes, passes tradition onto new officer team

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Approximately 300 students and parents associated with the Bullard High School Future Farmers of America gathered inside the Bullard Elementary School cafetorium Thursday, May 3, to honor and recognize the achievements made by members of the organization.

The celebration also reflected back on past years, as the BHS FFA organization marked its 78th anniversary this year.

“Our banquet was a great event,” said Stu Dildine, BHS FFA sponsor. “We celebrated the 78th anniversary of the BHS FFA department this year. We are certainly very proud of our students and their accomplishments.”

Taking a look back in retrospect at the organization’s successes in the 2017-2018 school year, The Bullard FFA had several leadership development events and career development events teams advancing to Area and State competition. In total, eight Bullard FFA teams advanced to State level competition this year.

The highest honor of the year went to the Radio Broadcast team, consisting of Lillian Bloxom, Peyton Moore, and Raelee Walker. The team finished second overall in Texas FFA, and was recognized as the State Runner-Up team.

The Nursery/Landscape team, consisting of Landon Harris, Taye McCurley, Weston McCullough, Esau Powell, and Gavin Watson also competed well this year, taking home first place in the Area VI contest and 18th place at State level competition. McCurley was recognized for being the highest ranked individual at the Area VI event.

Bullard FFA’s Agriculture Issues team of Lillian Bloxom, Hunter Low, Karlie Lowe, Weston McCollough, Peyton Moore, Sydney Morris, and Mallory Hatcher completed its year by taking home second place at the Area VI competition, as well as 17th place at the State contest.

Bullard FFA’s Livestock team of Nicole Jones, Weston Roach, Abby Grimes, Karlie Lowe, and Andrew McKeethan finished the season by placing fifth in Area VI and 26th place at State, while the Poultry team of Lillian Neumeier, Dalton Russell, Sydney Davis, and Ahlexcis Lackey secured a fourth place finish at the Area VI contest and 28th at the state contest.

The organization’s Floriculture team of Elyssa Dotson, Jarrett Whatley, Sydney Ellen Bass, Molly Duncan, and Alli Shelton wrapped up the competition season with at State with a first place recognition at the Area VI contest, as well as 38th place finish at State.

The Veterinary Science team of Lillian Bloxom, Kenzie Colston, Madeline Ekins, Colton Long, and Peyton Moore earned third place at Area VI, while also finishing in 39th place at the State event.

Bullard FFA’s Milk Quality team, consisting of Marcia Arriola, Addison Barnes, Heather Coe, and Gillian Lawrence also was a strong team for the program this year, finishing in fifth place at the Area VI competition, as well as taking home 33rd place at the State contest.

Bullard FFA’s Agricultural Advocacy team of Alivia Abercrombie, Sydney Ellen Bass, Taye McCurley, and Alli Shelton achieved a fourth place finish in Area VI competition.

Karlie Lowe was honored for placing sixth in the Area VI Junior Speaking Contest during the 2017-2018 school year.

Bullard FFA’s Senior Agriculture Skills team took home seventh place in Area VI, while the Junior Agriculture Skills team finished the Area VI contest in fifth place. Members of the Senior team include Kenzie Colston, Nicole Jones, Hannah Sieben, and Raelee Walker. Likewise, the Junior team was made up of Sydney Crowder, Abby Grimes, Nick Kraemer, and Colton Long.

Taylor Barber, Nicole Jones, Marissa Self, and Jarrett Whatley teamed their talents together to make up the roster of the Public Relations team, finishing in third place in Area VI.

Other teams representing Bullard FFA during the 2017-2018 season included the Senior Quiz team (Audrey Adams, Damion Brown, Esau Powell, and Dalton Russell), Junior Quiz team (Baylee Hall, Ahlexcis Lackey, Drew McKeethan, and Aiden Pate), Junior Chapter Conducting team (Cooper Callaway, Claire Cannon, Molly Duncan, Sydney Davis, Landon Harris, Jordy Martin, and Riley Wood), Prepared Public Speaking team (Heather Coe, Chloe Howard, Karlie Lowe, Lucy Moore, Peyton Moore, Marissa Self, Landon Wilson, and Holton Wirzberg), Horse Judging team (Savannah Boudreaux, Meagan Hodges, Peyton Moore, Marissa Self, Chloe Williams, and Harleigh Wootton), and Farm Business team (Travis Evans, Hannah Sieben, Peyton Strickland, and Riley Wood).

Bullard FFA members also exhibited their livestock and agriculture mechanics projects at numerous livestock shows across Texas, as well as across the country, with over 200 animal projects shown at livestock shows by over 100 members.

Members of the Bullard FFA Livestock Show Team during the 2017-2018 school year were also recognized at the banquet event, including Alivia Abercrombie, Keyanna Allison, Addison Barnes, Paige Barrett, Sydney Ellen Bass, Morgan Bearden, Karson Blow, Savannah Boudreaux, Sydney Braun, Thomas Brooks, Damion Brown, Skylin Caughlin, Lauren Chaffee, Sophie Clifton, William Clifton, Heather Coe, Kenzie Colston, Natalie Constante, Sydney Crowder, Katherine Dark, Emelia Ditsworth, Elizabeth Ekins, Jaydon Gage, Zane Geer, Kylie Gilbert, Abby Grimes, Peyton Hancock, Caleb Hand, Briley Hardy, Landon Harris, Mallory Hatcher, Meagan Hodge, Molly Kate Hooker, Hudson Hykel, Cate Jimmerson, Nicole Jones, Ryder Kutach, Ahlexcis Lackey, Harlie Lansford, Hunter Low, Karlie Lowe, Chayton McCurley, Taye McCurley, Andrew McKeethan, Kylie McKeethan, Sara McKeethan, Charley McNeal, Karli Miller, Rylee Miller, Lucy Moore, Peyton Moore, Sydney Morris, Bryce Nelson, John Nelson, Hudson Neumeier, Lillian Neumeier, Brody Newburn, Landon Paddack, Riley Park, Cole Phillips, Ashton Pickett, Esau Powell, Weston Roach, Madelyn Roberts, Dalton Russell, Samuel Russo, Marissa Self, Brandon Shanholtz, Lauren Shanholtz, Jasmine Smith, Darby Starks, Jacob Stripling, Kaelyn Stripling, Delaney Taylor, Sarah Turner, Gavin Watson, Chloe Williams, Aniston Wirzberg, Holton Wirzberg, Riley Wood, Harleigh Wootton, and Savannah Yeley.

Additionally, members of the Bullard FFA Agriculture Mechanics Show Team this year included Hunter Kafka, Taye McCurley, Esau Powell, Dalton Russell, Brandon Shanholtz, Kaiden Simons, and Gavin Watson.

Appreciation was given by the Bullard FFA sponsors and advisors towards the members of the 2017-2018 Greenhand FFA officer team, including Karlie Lowe, president; Andrew McKeethan, vice president; Sydney Crowder, secretary; Molly Duncan, treasurer; Abby Grimes, reporter; Colton Long, sentinel; and Riley Wood, student advisor.

Bullard resident Wes Stripling was awarded the organization’s Honorary Chapter Degree at this year’s banquet. According to the BHS FFA, the Honorary Chapter Degree is the highest degree a local FFA may bestow upon an adult supporter of the program. Nominated by the local FFA chapter, the recipient must have gone above and beyond the call of duty.

Likewise, Bullard resident Alycia Wootton was awarded the organization’s Chapter Mother award. According to the BHS FFA, Wootton has been an outstanding supporter of the local FFA chapter for many years, always involved in activities, and is available all the time.

The BHS FFA also awarded students with annual proficiency awards, given to students who show excellent skills in a particular area of agricultural science.

Recipients of the 2017 BHS FFA proficiency awards included Heather Coe (Food Science and Technology, Agricultural Communications); Kenzie Colston (Veterinary Science), Sydney Crowder (Wildlife Production and Management); Avery Grubbs (Diversified Horticulture); Mallory Hatcher (Sheep Production); Nicole Jones (Beef Production, Agriscience Research – Animal Systems); Karlie Lowe (Chapter FFA Creed Speaking, Agricultural Education – Placement); Weston McCullough (Nursery Operations); Taye McCurley (Landscape Management); Kylie McKeethan (Swine Production); Shenandoah Meisenheimmer (Diversified Horticulture); Peyton Moore (Prepared Public Speaking, Outdoor Recreation, Diversified Crop Production); Sydney Morris (Goat Production); Esau Powell (Vegetable Production, Agricultural Processing); Marissa Self (Equine Science); Kaiden Simons (Agricultural Mechanics); Weston Roach (Agricultural Services); Dalton Russell (Poultry Production – Placement, Diversified Livestock Production); and Gavin Watson (Turfgrass Management).

The organization also announced several scholarship recipients, including scholarships from the FFA Booster Club, Smith County Youth Expo, the Courtnee Odom Scholarship, and a newly created scholarship, among other scholarships.

Bullard FFA members receiving $200 scholarships from the Bullard FFA Booster Club included Alivia Abercrombie, Lillian Bloxom, Mallory Hatcher, Hunter Kafka, Nicole Jones, Weston Roach, and Marissa Self.

Students receiving a scholarship through the Smith County Youth Expo included Nicole Jones ($1,500), Weston Roach ($1,000), Marissa Self ($800), and Mallory Hatcher ($800).

Dalton Russell received the Courtnee Odom Scholarship, named after former BHS FFA student Courtnee Odom. The amount of the scholarship is $750.

Weston Roach was announced as the recipient of the inaugural Jimmy Bain Memorial Scholarship, in honor of the late Jimmy Bain, a longtime sponsor of Bullard FFA.

Two members of Bullard FFA received $10,000 scholarships from the San Antonio Livestock Show, including Cole Phillips and Weston Roach.

Nicole Jones was also presented with a $1,000 National FFA Scholarship, as well as a $6,000 State Fair of Texas Scholarship.

Bullard FFA students Kaiden Simons and Christian Bullard were each honored with a $500 scholarship from Tulsa Welding School, while Bullard also received a $1,000 scholarship from Imagine America.

The final scholarship of the banquet event was presented to Mallory Hatcher, winning then Kiwanis Club Scholarship in the amount of $600.

Bullard FFA also recognized one of its student leaders of the program, Nicole Jones, for her service as a Mineola District officer during the 2017-2018 school year, while announcing that Peyton Moore would serve as an Area VI vice president during the 2018-2019 school year.

Chris Pawlak, assistant principal at Bullard High School, presented the Scholastic award, given to an active FFA member with the highest grade point average, to Lillian Bloxom.

At the end of the night, the Bullard FFA sponsors awarded retiring officer plaques to the 2017-2018 Bullard FFA officers, including Weston Roach, president; Nicole Jones, vice president; Peyton Moore, secretary; Marissa Self, treasurer; Hunter Low, reporter; Taye McCurley, sentinel; Dalton Russell, chaplain; Heather Coe, historian; Alivia Abercrombie, recruitment and retention committee chairman; and Gavin Watson, appointed committee member.

The FFA members that will compose the 2018-2019 Bullard FFA officer corps was also introduced to the audience. Newly elected Bullard FFA officers include Peyton Moore, president; Hunter Low, vice president; Taye McCurley, secretary; Karlie Lowe, treasurer; Heather Coe, reporter; Dalton Russell, sentinel; Addison Barnes, chaplain; Abby Grimes, historian; and Gavin Watson and Meagan Hodge, elected delegates.

Advisors for the Bullard FFA during the 2017-2018 school year included Stu Dildine, Monty Main, Charlotte Main, Jessica Ramsey, and Kyndal Dixon.

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