2020-2021 South Dakota FFA State Officer Team

Back: Hunter Eider, Jackson McFaden Middle: Ryder Mortenson, Dirby Bawek Front: Samantha Olson, Elizabeth DeBoer

South Dakota FFA State Officers & Ambassadors

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Samantha Olson

2020-2021 State President

Samantha Olson is from Aberdeen, South Dakota. She is currently majoring in Math Education with a minor in Coaching at South Dakota State University. During her time in high school, Samantha’s favorite LDE was Agricultural Communications. For her SAE project, Samantha works with Angus Cattle to show them, as well as helping with crops. Samantha joined FFA later than most students, during her sophomore year. She dove right in and began working very hard to catch up to her peers! Very soon she learned that no matter when you join, there is always room for new members in the FFA association. The FFA Association gave her an opportunity to flourish and find her interests. “Through hard work and dedication, the impossible is possible; just dream big and never be afraid to show who you are,” said Olson.

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Hunter Eide

2020-2021 State Secretary

Hunter Eide is from Gettysburg, SD. He will be majoring in Human Biology this fall at South Dakota State University. His favorite CDE is Parliamentary procedure. His SAE consists of a vegetable garden business, managing the Gettysburg FFA Pug Project, working at West Whitlock Recreation Area, and his agriscience research projects where he examines the effects of delayed fertilization on the mortality rates of landlocked fall Chinook Salmon eggs. His FFA journey began when an upperclassman encouraged him to go to Leadership Retreat going into his freshman year and was amazed by the wonders of FFA. Hunter credits the FFA for shaping him into the man he is today!

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Dirby Bawek

2020-2021 State Reporter

Dirby Bawek is from Doland, SD and is at South Dakota State University majoring in Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering. His favorite CDEs were Ag Mechanics and Ag Business. He joined FFA in middle school when the Doland chapter was reopened. His first memories of the organization are of competing in the Agronomy CDE as a 7th grader. It wasn’t until his sophomore year that he started to grow a love for the FFA and its members. To him, FFA is a place to feel at home and find meaningful relationships! FFA has helped him to broaden his horizons and develop his love for agriculture and the agricultural business and industry. To Dirby, FFA is a place to feel at home.

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Beth Nagel

2020-2021 State Ambassador

Beth Nagel is from the Gettysburg FFA Chapter.


Jackson McFaden

2020-2021 State Vice President

Jackson McFaden is from Milbank, SD and is majoring in Agricultural Education at South Dakota State U. His favorite FFA event to compete in was Parliamentary Procedure. Through his SAE, Jackson worked at a hardware store for two years as well as a movie theater. During his SAE, Jackson learned how a business properly works and the virtue of giving back to his community. Jackson’s FFA experience started with him being surprisingly put into his first position, but he quickly came into his own and learned what kind of member and person he wanted to be. He now looks forward to serving the SD FFA Association and the members he cares so much about!

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Elizabeth Deboer

2020-2021 State Treasurer

Elizabeth DeBoer is from Clear Lake, SD. She will be majoring in Vocal and Instrumental Music Education at SDSU. Throughout her high school FFA career, Elizabeth enjoyed participating in Employment Skills and Floriculture. Elizabeth joined FFA because of her older siblings but stayed involved because of the huge impact it had on her life!

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Ryder Mortenson

2020-2021 State Sentinel

Ryder Mortenson is from Winner, SD. He will be double majoring in Agricultural Business and Business Economics at South Dakota State University. Ryder's favorite CDE throughout his FFA career was floriculture. For his SAE project, Ryder raises 35 red Angus cow-calf pairs on his families operation in Kennebec, South Dakota. Ryder joined FFA because he saw how big of an impact the organization had on his brother, and how FFA benefited his community. FFA means so much to Ryder because of all of the connections he has made throughout the nation and the knowledge he has learned about the agricultural industry.

Caitlynn Barse

2020-2021 State Ambassador

Caitlynn Barse is from the Groton FFA Chapter.

© 2020 by South Dakota FFA Association

For more information about Agriculture Education or FFA, contact the SD FFA Association at 605-688-4380 or at dani.herring@sdstate.edu

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