By Piper Lakey, State FFA Reporter
July ended with a rush of activity and excitement, as the State Officer team hosted a cohort of 54 members from across the state at the Regional Officer Leadership Conference. The four-day conference was in Buellton, in the South Coast Region. The event comprised a diverse range of activities, encompassing workshops, industry tours, and a thought-provoking talk delivered by guest speaker and past state officer, Alexias Woolf-House.
Heading into August, the team embarked on separate paths, converging at two distinct destinations: the California Youth Agriculture Exposition and the Southern Region Sectional Officer Leadership Summit. Austin and Sierra assisted in the running of various events throughout the Expo in Tulare and assisted in the grand entrance for the Champion Drive. Meanwhile Makena, Sydney, Piper, and Thomas headed down South to the campus of Cal Poly, Pomona. During this Summit, the quartet conducted two workshops centered on the themes of individuality in leadership and effective communication techniques.
A special piece of this conference was the Ag Olympics where each of the Southern Regional Officer Team members were in charge of a game for the sectional officer teams to compete in. Following an exhilarating array of games, points were tallied, and the San Diego Section Team emerged as the ultimate victors.
Continuing their journey, the team visited Piper’s hometown of McArthur. During this visit, the team enjoyed a leisurely float down Hat Creek, explored Burney Falls State Park, and even vaccinated cattle. On August 12, the Central Region Officer team hosted an impactful one-day Sectional Officer Leadership Conference (SOLC) in Stockton. This event catered to the sectional officer teams within the Central Region, equipping them with valuable skills for their year of service. The State Officers split up during the conference and were in charge of different team bonding activities.
Notably, the Central Region's SOLC theme for the year, "Ohana Means Family," resonated with values of unity and support. In support of those affected by wildfires in Hawaii, the region donated $750 to charities helping those in need and affected by the fires.
Next, the team visited Thomas’ home in Hanford. During this stay, they bonded with his family and gleaned insights into the operations of the M.F. Rosa Dairy, while also experiencing their amazing ice cream and flavored milk.
As August continued on, the spotlight shifted to the San Joaquin Region's annual conference—a two-day affair aimed at training their sectional officer teams. During this event, members planned events with their teams and gained skills from workshops presented by the San Joaquin Regional Officer Team.
The team journeyed to Rancho Cucamonga to pay Sydney's hometown a visit. The visit encompassed a range of experiences, from engaging with her high school's agriculture department to embarking on horseback trail rides and culminating with a day spent at Disneyland. Despite the unanticipated rainy weather, the week spent with Sydney's family was a lot of fun.
With the commencement of a new school year, the team is brimming with excitement as they prepare to kick off the chapter visit season, armed with a wealth of experiences and enthusiasm garnered throughout the summer.