Cook County Student and Family Connection Youth Leader Elected State FFA Officer

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Cook County HS junior Ashton Lovett

Last week nearly 6,000 people from across Georgia packed the Macon Centreplex to participate in the 85th Annual Georgia FFA State Convention and to elect new state officers. For the first time in 28 years, one of those new officers is a student from Cook County.

Ashton Lovett, a junior at Cook High School, was elected to serve as the Georgia FFA State South Region vice president for 2013-2014. Lovett also serves as a youth leader for Cook County Family Connection, and for several years has participated in leadership trainings and peer mentor programs.

Lovett is the first female student from Cook County—and only the third student ever from the county—to be elected as a state officer. More than 30 students from across Georgia competed to serve as leaders for the 34,000 Georgia FFA club members. The last time Cook County was represented on the state level was when a local veterinarian, Dr. Marshall Bennett Jr., served as an officer in 1984-1985.

Actively involved in FFA since the sixth grade, Lovett has participated in a variety of livestock, agriculture, and leadership projects. She attributes much of her success to Richard Herrin, FFA adviser at Cook High School, and to Whitney Mitchell, agriculture teacher and FFA adviser at Lowndes Middle School.

“Mr. Herrin has been my teacher, adviser, and mentor since my freshman year,” said Lovett. “He has helped to prepare me to reach this goal of becoming an FFA state officer. Ms. Mitchell has been a great friend and role model. As a state officer in 2008-2009, she gave me guidance in strengthening my leadership abilities and helped prepare me mentally for the nominating committee process.”

Through her involvement with Family Connection, Ashton has made formal FFA presentations to community leaders, Valdosta State University sociology students, and even to Georgia First Lady Sandra Deal during the past year. The Cook County Collaborative sent Ashton and 10 other local FFA students to the 2012 National FFA Convention in Indianapolis for leadership training.

After she graduates from Cook High School next year, Lovett plans to attend Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College and then the University of Georgia to study agricultural economics. But first she plans to savor every experience as an FFA vice president.

“I’m so excited about the great people I will get to meet and the exciting opportunities I will have as a state officer,” she said. “I can’t wait to see all the places God is going to lead me in this new position.”

About FFA
Founded in 1928, the former “Future Farmers of America” brought together students, teachers and agribusiness to solidify support for agricultural education. The name of the organization was changed to the National FFA Organization in 1988 to reflect the growing diversity of agriculture. Today more than 500,000 student members are engaged in a wide range of agricultural education activities. The Georgia FFA Association is the third largest state association in the nation with more than 30,000 members.

 Learn more about Cook County Family Connection.

Zoe Myers
Cook County Family Connection Executive Director

Bill Valladares
GaFCP Communications Director
404-527-7394 (x114)

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