Ag Voices: An Ode to Bledsoe

By on January 28, 2013

Joshua Bledsoe, the NC FFA state agricultural education leader, was recently named chief operating officer of the National FFA Organization. Bledsoe will assume his new duties in Indianapolis in February.

Our Ag Voices students have had the chance to work closely with Bledsoe during their time in FFA. Two of the students, Matt Currin and Daniel Alvey, share their impressions of him below.

Mr. Bledsoe is one of the most influential leaders I have had the opportunity to work with and has had a huge impact on my life since I moved to Raleigh in 2010. During my term as a state FFA officer, he constantly challenged me to grow and provided direction whenever I needed advice. He has a way of working with students that allows them to discover talents they never acknowledged before. Agricultural education in North Carolina has grown and prospered under his leadership and I’m sure the same trend will occur on the national level when he becomes the Chief Operating Officer at National FFA. We have been fortunate to have Mr. Bledsoe in North Carolina this long, but his talents should not be limited to only one state when they can provide wonderful opportunities to the entire nation. One of his favorite sayings is “Happy Days!”, and I know many of those are ahead for Mr. Bledsoe and anyone who has a chance to interact with him.

Mr. Bledsoe has served as a great leader to many people across the state of North Carolina. Although our experience together was limited, the few times that I did speak or get to listen to Mr. Bledsoe was truly a privilege. I never served as a NC FFA State Officer, but I did assist in various NC FFA events including State FFA Convention. I got the chance to see Mr. Bledsoe in action at these functions, and without his work I can say that NC FFA would not be where it stands today. And through my experiences, although few, with Mr. Bledsoe, I can say that I admire him for his efforts and achievements over the course of his career as a leader in FFA for the state of North Carolina. He has a great personality, is fun to be around, knows how to take control, and is very people and service oriented. All of these qualities, I know, will bring more great experiences to the people and work that surround him in the rest of his career.”

Congratulations Mr. Bledsoe! It is wonderful to have Mr. Bledsoe serve the best youth organization in the country as COO. I have been very fortunate to work with and learn from Mr. Bledsoe as a high school FFA member, State FFA Officer and National Officer Candidate. As the 2012 National Officer Candidate, I was able to spend many nights interviewing and learning from him. Mr. Bledsoe made my experience as a candidate positive, enjoyable and worth the journey. I will never forget sitting in the N.C. FFA Office on the last night of my practice interviews. Mr. Bledsoe and past N.C. FFA intern Ashley Pedersen had surprised me with GiGi cupcakes to celebrate our hard work. This act of kindness proves that Mr. Bledsoe is not just a dedicated leader but is also a very thoughtful mentor and friend. I know Mr. Bledsoe will continue to positively influence the lives of students and adults alike in his new position.

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