Three contests are held annually during the South Dakota Farm Bureau annual meeting to recognize outstanding Young Farmers & Ranchers. During the SDFB's 96th annual meeting held Nov. 22-23 in Pierre, these three winners were chosen:
Discussion Meet Winner: Steve Devney of Fairview, S.D.
Steve Devney of Fairview, S.D. was chosen as winner of the YF&R Discussion Meet. The Discussion Meet contest is designed to simulate a committee meeting where discussion and active participation are expected from each participant. The meet is evaluated on an exchange of ideas and information on a pre-determined topic, with the judges looking for the contestant that offers constructive criticism, cooperation and communication, while analyzing agricultural problems and developing solutions. Devney was named the Discussion Meet winner after competing in two rounds with three other contestants.
Steve and his wife Wendy farm near Fairview, and he is also employed as a Commodity Merchandiser at Interstate Commodities in Sioux Falls. They are parents to a daughter, Margaret, and are expecting a second child in February. The couple represents District 1 on the South Dakota Farm Bureau Young Farmers & Ranchers State Committee.
Achievement Award Winner: Jami Moon of Creighton, S.D.
Jami Moon was selected as winner of the YF&R Achievement Award. The Achievement Award is designed to recognize Young Farmers & Ranchers who have excelled in their farming / ranching operations and have honed their leadership abilities to superiority. The contestants were evaluated on a combination of their farming operation growth and financial progress of operation, Farm Bureau leadership, as well as leadership outside of Farm Bureau. The judges looked for excellence in management, growth and scope of the enterprise and self-initiative that have been displayed throughout the operation.
Jami and her husband J.T. ranch near Creighton and are parents to Emmy, Lucy, and Johnny.
Excellence in Ag Award Winner: Matt Vandersnick of Willow Lake, S.D.
Matt Vandersnick of Willow Lake, S.D. was chosen as winner of the Excellence in Ag Award. The Excellence in Agriculture Award competitive event is designed as an opportunity for young farmers and ranchers to earn recognition, while actively contributing and growing though their involvement in Farm Bureau and agriculture. Participants are judged on their involvement in agriculture, leadership ability, and participation/involvement in Farm Bureau and other organizations (i.e., civic, service and community).
Matt and his wife Kristin farm near Willow Lake and are parents to daughters Ella and Claire.
Each winner received a trip to represent South Dakota during the national contests to be held during the American Farm Bureau Federation Annual Meeting. The AFBF meeting to be held in January in San Antonio, T.X.