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FFA Chartering Ceremony Held For Fort Hill and Mountain Ridge High Schools

The FFA chartering ceremonies for Future Farmers of America (FFA) for both Fort Hill and Mountain Ridge High Schools were held on March 26. With the exception of Allegany High Schools chapter last year, Allegany County has not had an FFA Chapter since 2011. These two chapters are a result of hard work between Allegany County Public Schools and the community of Allegany County.

“It is a powerful organization and you will become better adults through the FFA Chapter,” says TR Robinette, President of the Allegany County Farm Bureau. “There are a lot of people that worked very hard so you could get this Chapter open in Allegany County, at these schools.”

The ceremony was led by the Maryland State FFA student officers and Terrie Shank, Maryland FFA Executive Director. Ten members from Fort Hill High School and seventeen members from Mountain Ridge High School were inducted during the ceremonies. Fort Hill members included: Jovie Brietfeller, President; Trey Ginevan, Vice President; Alyssa Tressler, Secretary; Baelee Hanson, Sentinel; Aaron Seekford, Treasurer; Daquan Stepney, Reporter; Cheyanne Ginevan, Zachariah Ahern, Rachel Walters, and Rebecca Winters. Mountain Ridge members included: Nautica Wyant, President; Rylee Sheppard, Vice President; Hailey Collins, Secretary; Bella Dashiell, Reporter; Jade Kimble, Treasurer; Kyra Butler, Sentinel; Amica Eggers, Jakob Glotfelty, Cadence Haggerty, Madyson Picard, Kayla Konke , Alexis Leatherman, Ashlynn Myers, Josh Warnick, Charlie Simpson, Ethan Preston, and Ryan Piasecki.

“I would like to recognize the efforts of our administration, from the central office, and all of the schools,” says Jeffrey Blank, Superintendent of Schools. “Ms. Iser, thank you for your leadership to make FFA return to Allegany County. Congratulations to our students for taking advantage of this wonderful opportunity to be a part of the beginning stages of FFA.”

“I'm so thankful to be here with these students as they start their journey in FFA!” says Ms. Iser.

In attendance were community members from the Maryland Agriculture Education Foundation, Soil Conservation District, Maryland FFA Foundation, Maryland Farm Bureau, Allegany County Ag Expo, University of Maryland Extension Office, and Lee Heavener, retired Allegany County Agriculture teacher. These groups also expressed their support through presenting monetary donations and / or sharing congratulatory comments.

“With the FFA, the opportunities that you will get will be outstanding,” says Lee Heavner, former Allegany County teacher and FFA member. “Everyone in this room depends on agriculture every day. As FFA members and young individuals, you are the future.” 

Also in attendance were ACPS Board members, Bob Farrell, President, Crystal Bender, Vice President, and Dr. David Bohn.

“When we ran for election, bringing FFA back to Allegany County was one of our promises to the school system,” says Dr. Bohn. “We’re pleased to have been able to fulfill this promise, both for our students and our community as a whole.”

“We’re so proud of the new members of these Chapters,” says Bob Farrell, ACPS Board President. “The Board is proud of all of you and want to thank you for putting forth this effort.”

FFA, founded in 1928, is a student organization that aims to bring together students, teachers, and agribusinesses to support agriculture education. Through the program students are provided opportunities for leadership development, personal growth, and career success. The Maryland FFA became the night state association in 1929 and now includes over 3000 members in over 47 Chapters.