The Arbuckle FFA was presented with the Distinguished Service Citation from the California FFA Organization during its annual state convention on April 23.
“This is an honor normally not given to FFA organizations,” said Arbuckle FFA advisor, Luke VanLaningham.
According to the California State FFA, the award is presented to an organization, agency, business, industry, or other groups to recognize its outstanding contributions made to California Agricultural Education and the California FFA Association.
“This citation is presented as a token of appreciation for encouragement, cooperation, and assistance given to the Future Farmers of America and helping them to accomplish outstanding achievements in farming, leadership, citizenship, and community welfare,” The California FFA said in a statement.
The citation was presented to the Arbuckle FFA for its copious amount of community involvement, projects, and its annual Career Development Event, the Arbuckle FFA Field Day.
“We received this honor because our amazing kids and community work to run the best field day we know. Each year this contest has grown with success, and recognized, statewide, as a must-attend event,” the Arbuckle FFA stated on its Facebook page. “To be recognized on a state level for this has been humbling; this is truly our community’s award because, without their support and contributions, none of this would be possible.”
Arbuckle FFA Advisor Cindy Rohde said, “This honor belongs to nine kids who, 20 years ago, were so humbled that college kids and teachers would give of their time so they could compete that they felt they should give something back. It belongs to the hundreds of kids over the years who were willing to take a chance on being part of something bigger than themselves to serve others. And it belongs to all of the teachers, parents, community members and businesses who have given so much of their time and treasure to support our kids and the goodness of this endeavor.”
In addition to its annual field, the the Arbuckle FFA was recognized for its adopt a family program, thank a farmer program, and for its community owl box project.
“It has been a great opportunity and an honor to work at Pierce High School, and to keep the traditions of the Arbuckle FFA Alive,” said VanLaningham. “It was quite an honor to receive the citation.”
The Arbuckle FFA is advised by Erin Sweet, Luke VanLaningham, and Cindy Rohde.■