Tell us about your farm and family. I am a fifth-generation dairy farmer at our family-owned dairy farm in Goodhue, Minnesota, called Green Acres. On our farm, we milk 173 cows and have many more calves and heifers. We produce most of our crops ourselves but occasionally have to buy some from surrounding farmers. We are organic, so it makes buying corn or hay a little more expensive. Our farm started as one, but we branched out to three farms back in 2009 — all of which are separate now — and we help the others only if they need it. My dad and uncle are the primary owners, but my older brother will be joining soon, now that he has graduated.
Why did you join FFA? I joined FFA in seventh grade, and in the years previous, I always helped my older brother do fruit sales — so that got me started in wanting to participate in FFA early on. However, lots of my family were members when they were in high school, so that also started my urge to join. We also had an amazing ag teacher at the time, but she left to pursue a career on her family’s dairy. Thankfully, we were blessed with another amazing teacher in her place.
What is your role in the chapter? I primarily take care of the finances of the chapter. I always make sure that every transaction we have is documented so that we know how much money we have at any given time. I also make sure that any upcoming events are ready to go and are set up so that when the time comes, we are ready.
What FFA contests do you compete in? I have started competing in poultry evaluation and have also participated in the best informed greenhand contest, small animals contest and livestock judging.
What do you look forward to most in the upcoming FFA year? This year, we have many big things planned, but I am most excited for the national convention. I also am excited for our annual Ag Day as well as our newest event which is our mock crash. We decided to do this to inform people of the dangers of being distracted or being under the influence while driving. We also decided to do this right before prom.
How has FFA shaped you as a person? I have met so many amazing people through this organization as well as have made great memories. It definitely has turned me into a group worker as well since not one person could do all of the work that goes into our events. It has taught me to do my share and always find a way to take weight off of others and help them get their portions done too. Another big part is leadership and doing my best to get others involved and grow the same passion I now have.
What are your duties on the farm? My primary duties involve cleaning the parlor at the end of milking at night as well as milking cows whenever I am needed. In the summer, I help by raking hay and doing farm work all around. Whether that be working on tractors, fixing something in the barn or cleaning something else up, I’ll be there to help when needed.
What are your future plans? This is my least favorite question since I truly am not entirely sure. I am a person that has many temporary hobbies, always looking for something new and different, but one thing I have looked at a few times is something in the correctional field.
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