Rushville graduate named Illinois FFA president

Published: Jul. 2, 2022 at 8:23 PM CDT
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RUSHVILLE, Ill. (WGEM) - A familiar face to some in the Tri-States will get a chance to explore Illinois this year after being elected to lead the Illinois State FFA.

At the state convention held last month, five new officers were elected including Rachel Hood, a recent graduate of Rushville-Industry High School.

Throughout her high school career, Hood said she was actively involved with the FFA.

Hood said her supervised agricultural experience involved agricultural education, where she taught 5th, 8th, 10th and 11th graders about parliamentary procedure, public speaking, welding and woodworking.

Now, as president, Hood said she was excited to be able to interact with more students across the state.

“We get to go on what’s called chapter visits, so that’s six weeks going to different chapters, which are schools, throughout the state of Illinois, as well as meeting with industry partners and other state officers across the nation,” said Hood.

She described herself as an extrovert, and said that she loved to have the opportunity to travel and meet new people.

Hood said she recommends current and future FFA students to take challenges head on, without the fear of failure.

“The FFA is a safe place to fail, and the only way you grow is through failures. So don’t be afraid to try new things and take new opportunities,” said Hood.

She said she was thankful for the support from the community.

Hood said she plans to attend Kansas University after her term as president and major in agricultural education.

A Proud Teacher

Hood was not the only one excited about her new role as a state leader in Illinois.

Sydney Riden, the agriculture teacher and FFA advisor at Rushville-Industry High School, said with teary eyes that she was extremely proud of Rachel for her hard work.

“She’s a great role model and I think the underclassmen really looked up to her and hopefully they see everything that she’s done and will continue working towards success,” said Riden.

The last Illinois State FFA president to come from Rushville-Industry High School was Sam Taylor, who served as president from 1991-1992.

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