Regional Stars in Agriscience
Meg Debolt – Chief Washakie FFA (Worland)
In addition to raising and showing livestock, Meg has conducted agriscience research experiments as part of her FFA program. One project studied bear attacks and how to best educate the public on how to avoid them. Her second project involved conducting a survey on cattle growers’ use of EPDs in selecting herd sires. Meg wanted to find out if the time and money her family ranch spent on collecting EPD data and testing translated into increased knowledge and sales. So she designed a survey, analyzed the data using statistical analysis and made recommendations based on her findings. Her most recent research project tested the efficiency of common products on hair growth in show cattle. Meg plans to become a livestock embryo transfer technician and return to the family ranch after completing college.
Laura Delano- Casper FFA
Laura has completed three agriscience research programs and an entrepreneurship robotics program to her SAE last year. Her first agriscience project focused on plant systems and the effects of gravity on growing radishes. She’s also investigated additives in milk chocolate, determining if a different additive could affect the melting point, thereby increasing efficiencies in transportation of products. Laura’s interest in robotics led her to become proficient at using 3-D printers. She’s even partnered with the local 4-H program to help design a robotics program, teaching a new generation of students about robotics building, programming and testing. Laura plans to become a forensic scientist and own her own robotics company in the future.
Regional Stars in Agribusiness
Barb Kissel -Thermopolis FFA
Barb owns and operates a club lamb business in Hot Springs County. She began with a single ewe and has grown her herd to six ewes and two bucks. In addition to selling the lambs, Barb rented her bucks out to local producers to help them grown their herds. Barb works to choose the right bloodlines to introduce into her herd and managing the nutrition of her gestating and nursing ewes. Barb plans to pursue degrees in agribusiness management and eventually become a veterinary technician.
Wyatt Johnson – Snowy Range FFA (Laramie)
Wyatt Johnson runs Cowboy Contracting and Excavation based in Laramie, Wyoming. Wyatt originally worked for his brother, eventually taking over the operation of the business. They specialize in building fence and completing dirt work for area customers. He operates small and large equipment such as backhoes, chainsaws and skid steers. Wyatt is responsible for all aspects of his business, including preparing bids, designing projects, construction and billing. He hopes to expand his business to become a full-service landscaping and excavating company, including digging foundations and septic pits. Wyatt plans to attend WyoTech next fall and attain certificates in business management and diesel engines. Both goals will help Wyatt with his future plans for his own contracting and excavation business.
Candee Coxbill – Southeast FFA (Yoder)
Candee owns and operates Showem Feeds in Goshen County. Candee specializes in selling livestock show feed to area sheep, cattle and goat producers. Initially starting with local producers, Candee now has a customer base and is the sole distributor of High Noon feed in four different states. She manages all aspects of her business from cultivating client relationships to tracking inventory and billing. An accomplished showwoman, Candee helps teach her customers about proper nutrition for better results in the show ring. Candee used her interest in graphic design to help High Noon and created their logo which is widely used on their products and clothing line. Candee plans to pursue a degree in graphic design and continue to operate Showem Feeds.
Regional Stars in Agricultural Placement
Torri Walker – Jim Bridger FFA (Mountain View)
Torri works on her family’s cattle ranch in southwestern Wyoming. Torri works year round, checking and moving cattle in the summer, haying in the fall, feeding in the winter and calving in the summer. Torri also works for her grandpa’s ranch and trucking business when needed. She’s developed her skills in livestock management, finance and machinery maintenance and repair. Torri used the skills she learned working for her dad to start her own cattle herd, buying replacement heifers from her father. She plans to attend LCCC and major in agriculture business.
Sterling Foss – Paintrock FFA (Basin)
Sterling Foss, representing the Paintrock FFA chapter, works as a hired man for Foss Farm and 5 Iron Feedlot. Name the job and Sterling will do it. In the winter, he is responsible for feeding the 3,000 head of cattle in the feedlot. In the spring, summer and fall, he takes care of irrigating the farm’s several hundred acres of sugar beets, corn and barley. He started learning to fly airplanes and now uses his pilot training to fly the farm’s mountain summer pastures, checking on their herd. Sterling runs the farm’s tractors, choppers and semis to transport finished commodities to market and has worked his way up to the lead combine operator. He also operated his own haying business, earning enough money to buy his own shares in Wyoming Sugar Company. Sterling plans to attend college and become a professional pilot
Betty Ann Jerney – John B. Kendrick Sheridan FFA
Betty Jerney from the John B. Kendrick FFA chapter works as a ranch hand at the Blue Sage Ranch in Sheridan, Wyoming. She initially began working in order to pay off a Border Collie puppy, but she quickly found a passion for the work that she does. Betty is a reliable worker and has worked her way up from doing house chores to feeding all of the animals and exercising horses. One of her biggest accomplishments was learning how to manage irrigation systems. Betty is involved in all aspects of the ranch, including care for the operations sheep, working dogs and horses as well as irrigation and maintenance. Betty plans to attend Sheridan College majoring in agriculture business.
Dawson Evertson – Snowy Range FFA (Laramie)
Dawson is employed at his family’s vet clinic, Alpine Animal Hospital in Laramie. He says he grew up in the clinic, first helping by picking up trash and walking the dogs. Dawson’s role has expanded to include facility repair and maintenance and he is the sole handyman for the clinic. He works with the doctors and veterinary technicians, listening to their requests for repairs and helping them with projects that will make the clinic more efficient. Recently, he custom fabricated a mounting light for the clinics new surgery light system. Dawson also assists the vets in the field by working cattle and horses. He plans to attend the University of Wyoming and major in agribusiness and livestock management.
Garrett Strohschein – Wright FFA
Garrett works several different jobs in construction and maintenance, from landscaping and facility maintenance at a local mobile home park to running backhoes, excavators and skid steers for Strohschein Construction and assisting with the care of livestock at the 40,000 acre Hell and Back Ranch. Garrett also works as the county ranch hand, hiring out to other ranches for events like brandings, dockings, pregnancy testing of livestock and fencing. He prides himself on his “figure-it-out” attitude and uses his carpentry, construction and electrical skills to help solve problems for his employers and customers.
Regional Star Farmers
Katie Kendrick-Jim Bridger FFA (Mountain View)
Katie has been rodeoing since the 7th grade. Her SAE includes raising and training her own performance horses. Katie starts colts and finishes green broke horses, logging hours in the saddle to turn them into competitive team roping or breakaway roping horses. Katie buys horses to finish and sell and takes on horses from clients. After high school, Katie plans to work as a professional horse trainer.
Mikilie Sims – Evanston FFA
Mikilie grew up on a sheep farm, but began her own breeding sheep program when she was eight. Today she manages her own flock of Hampshire sheep as well as showing market goats and hogs each summer. Mikilie raises registered stud rams she sells to other producers to improve the genetics of their flock. In addition to working on the family ranch and taking care of her own sheep, MIkilie works at the Bear River Veterinary Clinic. She plans to become a certified vet technician there after high school
Ryan Virgil – Paintrock FFA (Basin)
Ryan grew up on TD Farms, his family’s farm in Big Horn County. His project includes both cattle production and work placement on the family farm. Ryan started with cows purchased through a loan and has grown his own herd of commercial cattle to 40 head in just a few years. In addition to taking care of his cattle Ryan works on the family farm where they raise barley, sugar beets, hay and corn. Ryan helps irrigate and harvest as well as monitor cattle on their mountain summer pasture. Ryan plans to attend the University of Wyoming majoring in agriculture engineering.
Jordan Jones –Whitcomb FFA (Moorcroft)
Jordan grew up on her family’s registered Black Angus ranch helping her dad with everyday ranching activities. She chose her first calf at age six, but as a freshman began to build her own herd. Today, Jordan has 17 head of Black Angus cattle. To help care for the land that supports her cattle, she’s helped to create and implement a soil conservation plan on the ranch. The plan helped increase the carrying capacity of the pasture by 39% over several years.
Paige Klipstein-Cheyenne High Plains
Paige owns a herd of commercial and breeding cattle. Her program began when she was 10 years old with a single cow and has grown to 11 cows and one Simmental bull. She also shows market beef and market hogs each summer. Paige will attend the University of Wyoming in the fall where she plans on majoring in Political Science with a minor in American politics.
Brandi Fuller- Wright FFA
Brandi and her sisters own and operate the Fuller Sisters Cattle Company. Together, the girls own 46 head of registered Angus, Hereford and Shorthorn cattle. Brandi researches bloodlines and genetics and designs custom feeding programs for her cattle. One of Brandi’s accomplishments with her herd is having a 100% breed back success after calving in 2018. After graduation, Brandi will attend the University of Wyoming while pursuing a degree in agricultural business, marketing or communications.