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Kalispell FFA among best in nation

Posted: Friday, October 28, 2016 6:00 am | Updated: 1:27 pm, Fri Oct 28, 2016.

Kalispell FFA didn’t disappoint in bringing home hardware from the National FFA Expo and Convention in Indianapolis, with one team ranking in the top 10 in the nation.

Top teams and individuals were awarded either gold, silver or bronze emblems in different career development events at the Oct. 19-22 convention. These events help students develop abilities to think critically and communicate clearly. Only one team from each state may compete in each event.

This was the first time the Kalispell team had four teams represent the state at nationals since 2009, Kalispell FFA Advisor Justin Heupel said.

The horse judging team earned gold and was ranked eighth in the nation. Individually, Averie Olson, Parker Cameron and Livia Jackola earned gold emblems, and Sarah Peterson a silver.

Overall, the farm business management team achieved a silver emblem, ranking 18th in the nation. Gray Gordon earned a gold emblem, Noelle Senner a silver, and Sandra Ek a bronze.

The meats evaluation and technology team, ranking 20th in the nation, brought home a silver emblem. Individually, Krystal Sutton not only earned a gold emblem in this event, but was ranked 12th overall and earned a $400 scholarship. Tia Evenson and Whitney Levanen both achieved silver emblems.

In the parliamentary procedure event, the Kalispell FFA team received a bronze emblem.

KALISPELL FFA team is also on a streak when it comes to earning a three-star rating in the National FFA Chapter Awards program. This is the 72nd time the team has been recognized with the highest rating a chapter can earn for successfully completing an annual set of required activities. Missoula was the only other Montana chapter to earn a three-star rating.

“The national convention is a culmination of last school year,” Heupel added.

Two Kalispell FFA members, Jacqueline Schauble and McKenzy Lee received the American FFA Degree.

Kalispell FFA is now gearing up for the John Deere Ag Expo at Montana State University Nov. 17 through 19.

“Right now we have close to 40 students ready to compete. Competitions are a great way for kids to keep network with professionals,” Heupel said.

The Kalispell FFA Chapter is made up of both Flathead and Glacier high school students.

Hilary Matheson is a reporter for The Daily Inter Lake. She may be reached at 758-4431 or hmatheson@dailyinterlake.com.

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