2013 FFA Chapter Challenge begins; $300,000 in incentives provided by Monsanto available up for grabs by FFA chapters in 15 states

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CONTACT
Duane Brodt
Marketing and Communications
National FFA Foundation
DBrodt@FFA.org
888-332-2589

INDIANAPOLIS (Monday, Jan. 28, 2013/National FFA Foundation) – FFA members in 15 states can now register for the 2013 FFA Chapter Challenge presented by Monsanto.

The 2013 FFA Chapter Challenge, a third-year program now available to more than 3,800 FFA chapters and 265,000 FFA members and sponsored by Monsanto, challenges FFA members to make meaningful connections with local agriculturists with a new twist.

FFA chapters will now compete in one of two contests with the FFA Chapter Challenge: option one requires FFA members to interview and document local agriculturists who then vote for a chapter, and option two requires FFA members build a portfolio of agriculturist and community member interviews, develop a social media plan and film a video promoting agricultural awareness. Two FFA chapters, one from each contest area, will win the grand prize to attend October’s 86th National FFA Convention & Expo in Louisville, Ky.

Before FFA chapters are eligible for the program, they must register at www.FFAChapterChallenge.com. FFA members in Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Tennessee, Texas and Wisconsin are eligible in 2013.

Other prizes will be awarded to each state’s top ten FFA chapters in either category for the FFA Chapter Challenge. Those prizes, a line of credit for use on FFA expenses such as supplies or national convention registration fees, range from $2,500 to $100. As a sponsor of the program, Monsanto will provide more than $300,000 in incentives.

“Monsanto is thrilled to partner again with the National FFA Foundation and support this year’s exciting new changes to the Chapter Challenge competition,” said Elizabeth Vancil, Monsanto customer advocacy outreach manager. “It’s a fantastic opportunity for local FFA chapters to not only learn from those within the agriculture community, but also to develop an outreach plan that will help champion agriculture’s message to those who are part of our broader community.”

“FFA and Monsanto are both delighted to bring the FFA Chapter Challenge in 2013,” said Rob Cooper, executive director of the National FFA Foundation. “This program encourages FFA members to better understand local agriculture, see a variety of potential careers and exhibit the great qualities of FFA members everywhere to the public.”

Winners will be announced in early April. For more information – including photos, news releases and more – visit www.FFAChapterChallenge.com.

The National FFA Foundation is the fundraising arm of the National FFA Organization, which provides leadership, personal growth and career success training through agricultural education to 557,318 student members in grades seven through 12 who belong to one of 7,498 local FFA chapters throughout the U.S., Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.

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About National FFA Foundation
The National FFA Foundation builds partnerships with industry, education, government, other foundations and individuals to secure financial resources that recognize FFA member achievements, develop student leaders and support the future of agriculture education. Governed by a 19-member board of trustees comprised of educators, business leaders, individual donors and FFA alumni, the foundation is a separately-registered nonprofit organization. About 82 percent of all sponsorship dollars received by the foundation support FFA members and agricultural education opportunities. For more, visit the National FFA Foundation at http://www.FFA.org/Give.

About National FFA Organization
The National FFA Organization is a national youth organization of 557,318 student members as part of 7,498 local FFA chapters in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. The FFA mission is to make a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agricultural education. The National FFA Organization operates under a federal charter granted by the 81st United States Congress and it is an integral part of public instruction in agriculture. The U.S. Department of Education provides leadership and helps set direction for FFA as a service to state and local agricultural education programs. For more, visit the National FFA Organization online at www.FFA.org, on Facebook, Twitter and the official National FFA Organization blog.

About Monsanto
Monsanto is a leading global provider of technology-based solutions and agricultural products that improve farm productivity and food quality. Monsanto remains focused on enabling both small-holder and large-scale farmers to produce more from their land while conserving more of our world's natural resources such as water and energy. To learn more about Monsanto and its commitments, visit www.monsanto.com. Monsanto is on Twitter at www.twitter.com/MonsantoCo, and publishes its Beyond the Rows corporate blog at http://www.monsantoblog.com.