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Mike McCormick, Tri-County Herald 

Richards Drug Honors County's Best Of The Best FFA Members


February 21, 2019

The Richards Drug FFA Achievement Award recipients are seated left to right as follows: Seth Jackson, Bethel; Isabella Brooks, Asher; Josey Moore, Dale; and Keegan Carrera, Shawnee. Standing from left is Gordon Richards, Jr. of Richards Drug; Wyatt Brown, Tecumseh; Blaine Cope, Macomb; Zane Walker, McLoud; Corey Forman, Wanette; and Jamie Barrick of Richards Drug.

Two young women and six young men were honored Monday evening as recipients of the 2019 Gordon Richards FFA Achievement Awards. Annually, Richards Drug Stores in Shawnee honors the top FFA student in each of the eight chapters throughout Pottawatomie County.

It's the 74th year the awards have been presented. The national FFA organization was 18 years old when this was started in 1946.

Dr. Scott Stewart, a former recipient of this award in 1987 who has a medical practice in Shawnee, told the students, "You have been well-equipped to make a difference. Having the tools is not enough," he added.

"You must be willing to lead, know who to lead and what to lead and when ... The future is ahead. It's up to you."

Dr. Stewart pointed out, "Sometimes when we fail we learn the most." And he reflected back on his first day in FFA under the late Bethel Vo-Ag teacher James Yeisley, and 10 words he'll always remember, "If it is to be it is up to me."

The recipients include:

Josey Moore, Dale FFA - Moore is currently a senior at Dale high school. She is the daughter of Anthony and Monica Moore. She has been an active member in FFA for 5 years and currently serves as chapter vice president. She is a Greenhand and discovery award winner.

Josey has also attended the Oklahoma State FFA convention. She has also represented the Dale FFA chapter at the central district colt conference, chapter officer leadership training, Oklahoma FFA alumni camp, and numerous FFA competitions throughout the state.  

She runs and manages a Linus Blanket project that is partners with the Oklahoma Bureau of Narcotics. Blankets are made and distributed to drug endangered children across the state. She spends numerous hours with this project and other countless community service projects in Oklahoma. 

She is the president of Dale High School Student Council. She also holds several officer positions in other organizations.  

Josey is heavily involved with livestock shows on the local, state, and national level. She exhibits show pigs and is a multiple time champion at all three levels. She will be attending Oklahoma State University in the fall and major in animal science and agribusiness with a possible minor in a foreign language.

Zane Walker, McLoud FFA - Walker is a junior at McLoud High School and is the son of Gene and Debbie Walker. Zane has been a member of the McLoud FFA Chapter for three years and is currently serving as the Chapter Secretary.

His SAE experience is showing pigs, and he has attended many state and local livestock shows. He has also attended CDE activities like livestock judging competitions and shooting sports events. While in FFA, Zane has also attended many leadership activities including FFA Alumni Camp, Made For Excellence, Central Area COLT Conference and State FFA Convention. 

Being in FFA has fueled his passion of caring for animals and he is determined to pursue his ambition of becoming a veterinarian. He plans to attend Oklahoma State University after high school and work towards a degree in Veterinary Science.

Keegan Carrera, Shawnee FFA - Carrera is a junior at Shawnee High School. He's the son of Kevin and Reagan Carrera. He is currently the president of the Shawnee FFA Chapter. Keegan has been an officer in his FFA chapter for the last two years.

During his time with Shawnee FFA, Keegan has attended National Conventions, State Conventions, FFA Alumni Camps, Colt Conferences and Advance Leadership Development Conferences.

Keegan raises club lambs and exhibits them throughout Oklahoma. He also shows steers and heifers. He is a member of the Shawnee FFA Livestock Judging Team, the Commercial Cattle Grading Team, the Horticulture Judging Team and the Animal Science Quiz Bowl team.

In addition to his livestock projects, Keegan is very active in speech competitions and has competed and placed at the FFA Agri Science Fair at the state level. He has conducted research in the Animal Science area and his current Agri Science project is in raising catfish in an Aquaponics system to evaluate the growth and development of fingerlings in varying water sources.

Keegan is interested in becoming a reproductive physiologist and plans to attend Oklahoma State University.

Isabella Brooks, Asher FFA - Brooks is a senior at Asher Public School. Her mother is Tammy Brooks. She currently serves chapter treasurer.

She is a member of the 2018 state champion animal science quiz bowl team.

List of leadership events that Isabella has attended include Made for Excellence leadership conference, advanced leadership conference and Chapter officer Leadership training.

She's also participated in the state and national conventions.

Isabella is applying for this year's State FFA Degree.

Her SAE includes raising and showing meat goats while maintaining a job at Tener's Western Store to help fund her operation.

Blaine Cope, Macomb FFA - Cope is currently a junior at Macomb High School. 

He is the son of Pat and Denise Cope and is serving this year as the Macomb FFA president, is actively involved in showing pigs and playing basketball. After high school Blaine plans to attend Oklahoma State University.

Blaine shows hogs and has since he was nine years old. He has been third place the last two years in the State FFA Proficiency award for Heavy Equipment repair.

Seth Jackson, Bethel FFA - Jackson is the son of Mike and Holli Jackson. His Vo-Ag Advisor Kolton Shipley says, "Seth is an incredible individual. Seth has been showing pigs at a high level since he was 8 years old. He has served as Bethel FFA chapter reporter and is currently chapter president. Seth possesses many different qualities including leadership, public speaking, and a great work ethic."

Upon his graduation from Bethel High School, Seth will attend Oklahoma State University to pursue a degree in Agricultural Education as well as Animal Science.

Wyatt Brown, Tecumseh FFA - Brown is a senior and currently serves as the 2018-2019 chapter president for Tecumseh FFA. He is the son of Tony and Brandi Wittman.

Wyatt has been actively involved in FFA throughout his high school career. Wyatt's Supervised Agriculture Experience involves beef production where he raises and shows purebred Maine Anjou and Chianina cattle.

One of Tecumseh's Vo-Ag instructors Dodge Nichols says, "Wyatt is very diversified in the Tecumseh FFA Program. He has given speeches, attended state/national conventions and been a member of the state champion freshmen Greenhand quiz bowl team, runner up state champion animal science quiz bowl team and runner up state champion Ag mechanics team.

Speaker for the event was Dr. Scott Stewart, Bethel Graduate and former Richards FFA Achievement Award recipient.

"Wyatt is also a member of the National Honor Society and achieves great success in the classroom by maintaining a 3.7 GPA," Nichols added.

His future plans are attend Oklahoma State University majoring in Animal Science with a business option and continue raising purebred cattle with hopes to become a superintendent of a major livestock show.

Corey Forman, Wanette FFA - "I've attended Wanette public schools from pre-K to current," Forman said. "I am a junior in high school. I'm active in both 4-H and FFA."

He's showed goats for 4 years and pigs 3 years. Corey also has served as FFA officer for 3 years. He currently holds the sentinel position.

His parents are Sherrie and Mark Forman. He has a sister, Mya Forman. "I currently co-own and operate CMS livestock auction in Wanette. I am the auctioneer and plan to become a full time auctioneer when I graduate," Corey said.


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