Outstanding FFA members recognized in Stars Over Kansas Pageant

kansasffa89th Kansas FFA Convention, East Central, North Central, Northeast, Northwest, South Central, Southeast, Southwest, State Star Awards

FFA members were awarded the state’s top honors of Kansas FFA Star Farmer, Star in Ag Placement, and Star in Agribusiness during Friday’s final session of the 89th Kansas FFA Convention on the Kansas State University campus.

Each year, the Kansas FFA Association recognizes three FFA members who have the top Supervised Agricultural Experience (SAE) programs with the Star Farmer, Star in Agribusiness and Star in Agriculture Placement awards.

These awards were sponsored by ICM Inc., United Bank and Trust, Kansas Farm Bureau and the Pageant was sponsored by Farm Credit Associations of Kansas.974A4583 copy

Star Farmer: Tyler Phillips, Mission Valley FFA

Star in Ag Placement: Deven Foster, Labette County FFA

Star in Agribusiness: Cordell Waggoner, Haven FFA


Star Farmer: Tyler Phillips, Mission Valley FFA

A State Star Farmer has been recognized every year since 1957 and honors one member with an SAE in production agriculture.

Phillips’ SAE is in Diversified Crop Production Entrepreneurship. He rents 300 acres of brome grass, 350 acres of prairie hay, and 18 acres of row crop land. He has recently expanded into the custom haying market for added income. He is majoring in farm and ranch management at Butler County Community College.

Phillips is the son of Thomas and Amy Phillips. His FFA advisors are Kelly Hoelting and John Bergin.

The district star winners who were finalists for the state Star Farmer honor were: Northwest District: Gracyn Higley, Atwood FFA; North Central District: Natalie Harris, Chapman FFA; Southeast District: Katie Malone, Erie FFA; South Central District: Cade Harms, Marion-Florence FFA; Northeast District: Cale Hinrichsen, Rock Creek FFA; and Southwest District: Brittany Walker, Southwestern Heights FFA.


Star in Ag Placement: Deven Foster, Labette County FFA

Foster’s SAE is in Diversified Agriculture Production. He has worked on his family farm, which consists of a variety of row crops and a cow/calf operation. He has worked on soil preparation, fertilizer application, operating the planter, operating the wheat drill, and many other aspects of the operation.

Foster is the son of Kenneth and Therese Foster. His FFA advisors are Dustin Wiley, Jim Gilpin, Kyle Zwahlen and Jeff Falkenstien.

The district star winners who were finalists for the state Star in Ag Placement honor were: South Central District: Joshua Turner, Buhler FFA; Northeast District: Brantley Cluck, Doniphan West FFA; North Central District: Wyatt Travnichek, Ellsworth FFA; Northwest District: Conrad Vajnar, Hays FFA; East Central District: Sam Gleason, Mission Valley FFA; Southwest District: Jordan Beeley, South Central FFA.


Star in Agribusiness: Cordell Waggoner, Haven FFA

The Star in Agribusiness, awarded every year since 1974 honors a member who manages his or her own agribusiness.

Waggoner’s SAE is in Wildlife Management. He raises game birds to sell to several different controlled shooting areas in a partnership with his brother. This year he built a third pen to raise their capacity to 3,000 birds which they raise from day-old chicks to flight-ready game birds. Waggoner is the son of Alan and Carol Waggoner. His FFA advisors are Corineah Williams, Steve Duft and Jeremiah Hobbs.  

The other district star winner who was a finalist for the state Star in Agribusiness honor, representing the Northeast District, was Ian McAsey from the Holton FFA chapter.