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Local graduates make history
at FFA state convention

History was made for Iowa Park this past week at the 90th Texas Future Farmers of America (FFA) Convention, as two IPHS members became back-to-back state officers, a first in the school’s history.
Recent graduate Josh Witherspoon was named State Vice President for Area IV during ceremonies at the Fort Worth Convention Center, filling the shoes of the most recent Area IV officer from Iowa Park, Bubba Harris.
According to IPHS Ag Science teacher Misty Ermis, this is the first time in school history Iowa Park members have been honored in such a fashion, in back-to-back years.
Ermis herself served as FFA state officer in 1985, five years after her sister, Wendy, held the same position.
Another IPHS graduate, Katelyn Perry, served as state officer for 2010-11.
The 90th annual Texas FFA Convention recorded approximately 12,000 members and guests. Members of the state’s largest agricultural youth leadership organization spent the week attending leadership workshops, participating in events and activities, being recognized for their achievements, and serving as the legislative body for the Texas FFA Association.
Several IPHS FFA members were in attendance at the state convention, with four members accepting Lone Star Farmer Degrees, and two members serving as Foundation Ambassadors.
McKinley Lee and Abby Wetherbee were selected as Foundation Ambassadors for the convention, providing an opportunity to meet, interact, and assist some of the special guests, VIPs and other important sponsors.
Accepting their Lone Star Farmer Degrees, the highest degree offered at the state level, were Casey Fung, Georgia Haggart, Addison Lynn, and Brittany Towery.
The Lone Star FFA Degree recognizes FFA members who have received the Chapter degree, been active FFA members for at least two years, completed at least four semesters of agricultural science at or above the ninth grade level, maintained a supervised agricultural experience (SAE) program, demonstrated their leadership skills, and have shown a commitment to the FFA through involvement at the chapter level and above.
Attending the convention as voting delegates from IPHS FFA included chapter officers Towery (president), Rachel Brockreide (vice president), Lee (secretary), Haggart (treasurer), Wetherbee (reporter), Micah Scobee (sentinel), and Montana Lehman (student advisor).
Witherspoon also received a $4,000 scholarship from the Fort Worth Stock Show and Rodeo.
Lee was also honored as Area IV Star Chapter Farmer state finalist in production.
“I was so excited and blessed to be a part of these great kids we have in Iowa Park that are shaping into such awesome, talented leaders,” Ermis said.
“It brought tears to my eyes to see these ‘once’ FFA teammates exchange the honors to one another,” Ermis said of the exhange between Harris and Witherspoon as new state officer. “People not involved in the FFA just don’t realize how rare this moment is for a chapter. It was a once in a lifetime memory made.”