The Blanco FFA Chapter hosted its annual end of year awards banquet for parents, members and guests on May 27. Over 130 people attended this year’s banquet, where local FFA members were recognized for their achievements during the 2008-2009 school year. Overall, the Blanco FFA won 12 Hill District Championships and 4 Area VII titles, while qualifying 7 teams for state competition. As a result of their successes, the Blanco FFA was named the Hill District Sweepstakes Winner for leadership and career development events for the eighth consecutive year. The highlight for this year’s chapter was winning its first ever State Championship in Livestock Judging and qualifying for the National Livestock Judging Contest in October at the National FFA Convention in Indianapolis, Indiana. In addition, Blanco FFA members were also recognized for placing numerous animals at major livestock shows across the state. Finally, several senior FFA members were recognized for scholarships they have received through their involvement in agriculture. At this time, senior Blanco FFA members have accumulated over $117,000 in scholarships with additional interviews scheduled in June.
Additional awards given out to individuals at this year’s banquet included the outstanding judging awards, as well as proficiency award winners. Outstanding judging awards went to the following FFA members: Livestock – Quaid Haack, Range – Katie Baker, Entomology – Taylor McCormick, Land – Victoria Jones, Plant ID – Mindy Dechert, Dairy – Austin Smith, Horse – TJ Raby, Wildlife – Weston Copenhaver, and Leadership – Payton Duvall. Proficiency awards were given to the following students: 1st year shop – Byron Mabry, 2nd year shop – Chris Isidro, 3rd year shop – Hector Lizaola, Senior Shop – Darin Dollahite and Brandon Harber, Ag Sales – Maggie Dennis, Crop Production – Aaron Thomson, Poultry Production – Claire Klepac, Beef Production – Kaleigh Anderson, Swine Production – Keaton Dodd, Sheep Production – Trevor Hardin, Goat Production – Alex Gustafson, and Diversified Livestock Production – Victoria Jones.
One final award given out included the Honorary Chapter Award given to one individual in the community that has gone above and beyond to help the Blanco FFA. This year’s Honorary Chapter Award went to Tim Guler.