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You are here: Home Opinion Paula I. Bryant What a feat

What a feat

Our congratulations go out this week to Halifax County’s own queen of FFA, Rebekah Slabach, who was chosen last week to serve the state Future Farmers of America as its vice president in the coming year.

We are so proud of her as she has accomplished something only one other Halifax County FFA’er has ever been able to do. 

For the first time in 40 years and the second time in the history of the county, Halifax County can say it has a native son — or daughter in this case — serving on the state hierarchy of the FFA organization.

Not since Halifax County native Dick Saunders became Virginia FFA State Sentinel in 1972 has this feat been accomplished.

(Many of you may remember Rebekah as the barefoot maiden during Halifax County High School’s 2011 commencement.)

She has always excelled at whatever she has put her mind to, so it comes as no surprise that she was able to beat out 25 other individuals from across the state Thursday to become the state FFA vice president during the 86th Annual Virginia State FFA Convention in Blacksburg.

And we have even more reason to be proud of her because she was the only representative from Southside.

We have watched Rebekah grow into quite the young lady over the past decade.

When she left the county last year to attend Virginia Tech with several of her siblings, we knew we would hear more from this promising HCHS grad as she majors in agriculture science with a minor in engineering science.

She has not disappointed us.

With one year of Virginia Tech studies under her belt, she now faces a myriad of new responsibilities associated with the position this unexpected FFA opportunity presents.

Because she is one to do things right and give every task her all, it also was not surprising that Slabach said last week she plans to defer college for her sophomore year at Virginia Tech so she can commit fully to her position as FFA vice president.

That’s Rebekah.

As state FFA vice president, her duties include filling in during the absence of the president, coordinating committees and delegating authority, and you can bet her upcoming year will be filled with lots of traveling.

During the next several months she will find herself in New Jersey, Massachusetts and Indianapolis for international leadership week, and she will participate in the national FFA competition. 

There are more trips being planned too.

I have to confess I’m a wee bit jealous of her awaiting adventures.

Her most recent achievement has brought back memories of my senior year in high school when I was elected State VICA (Vocational Industrial Clubs of America) reporter and the many travel experiences I enjoyed in that capacity.

We encourage Rebekah to savor every minute of this special time and experience in her life and record all these precious memories in journals, photos and videos so that years down the road she can share them with her children and grandchildren.

Next year will be Rebekah’s last year to participate as a student in the FFA organization, but we’re sure her ties to and support for this organization she holds so close to her heart will continue long into the future.

Cause as she says, “It’s the coolest organization in the world.”

Way to go, Rebekah. Continue to make us proud.