Zimmerman elected to 2021-22 National FFA Officer team

Colleen Kottke
Wisconsin State Farmer
Corthney Zimmerman

Clasping hands with fellow FFA members who had advanced to the final round of the selection process for the 2021-22 National FFA Officer team, Cortney Zimmerman waited nervously in front of the stage during the seventh general session of the 94th National FFA Convention & Expo, to see if she would fill one of the six coveted spots.

She didn't have long to wait Saturday night, as the Spencer, Wisconsin resident was the first to rush on stage as she was named the central region vice president on the National FFA Officer team.

Zimmerman, an agricultural communications major from Wisconsin, who attends South Dakota State University, most recently served on the 2020-21 Wisconsin FFA State Officer team and was a Star Farmer finalist in 2020.

She is the first Spencer FFA Member to be elected as a National FFA Officer and only the eighth FFA member from Wisconsin to serve on the national officer team in the FFA’s 94-year history.

National FFA officers from Wisconsin

  • 1935-1936  Owen Owens, Second Vice President, Montello
  • 1939-1940  Ivan H. Kindschi, President, Prairie du Sac
  • 1967-1968  William Boehm, Central Region Vice President, Mosinee
  • 1974-1975  Gerrit DeBruin, Central Region Vice President, Monroe
  • 1982-1983  Cara Doyle, Central Region Vice President, Green Bay
  • 2004-2005  Jackie Mundt, President, Pittsville
  • 2011-2012  Alicia Hodnik, Central Region Vice President, Walworth
  • 2021-2022 Zimmerman, Central Region Vice President, Spencer

Zimmerman is the daughter of Mark and Cheryl Zimmerman. Cheryl serves as the Wisconsin State FFA Executive Director and the National FFA Executive Secretary.

Zimmerman told Brownfield Ag News that she’s looking forward to “being able to not only dive into those students who have deep roots in agriculture but then also those non-traditional students who are just entering the agricultural education classroom and finding their importance in this organization.”

Cortney Zimmerman of Wisconsin will serve along with fellow FFA members Cole Baerlocher, Jackson Sylvester, Mallory White, Josiah Cruickshank and Erik Robinson Jr. on the 2021-22 National FFA Officer Team.

Zimmerman joins fellow National FFA Officer team members: 

  • Cole Baerlocher, an agricultural education major from Washington, was elected national president. He attends Washington State University.
  • Jackson Sylvester, an agriculture major from Delaware, was elected national secretary. He attends the University of Delaware.
  • Erik Robinson Jr., a criminal justice major from Georgia, was elected southern region vice president. He attends the University of Georgia.
  • Josiah Cruikshank, a business administration and mechanical engineering major from Oregon, was elected western region vice president. He attends Oregon State University.
  • Mallory White, an agronomy major from Kentucky, was elected eastern region vice president. She attends Murray State University in Kentucky.

These members were selected from 37 candidates vying for the honor. Each year during the National FFA Convention & Expo, six students are elected by delegates to represent the organization as national officers. Delegates elect a president, secretary, and vice presidents representing the country’s central, southern, eastern, and western regions.

Before they are elected, candidates take part in an extensive interview process with the National FFA Officer Nominating Committee.

The primary responsibility of a national officer is to serve the organization in local, state, national and international activities in a way that will inform, motivate and inspire FFA members, advisors, state staff, teachers and others to achieve the mission, strategies and core goals of the organization.

National officers dedicate one year of service with the organization. The time is spent representing student membership during meetings with the National FFA Board of Directors, facilitating workshops that bring leadership and knowledge to FFA members, delivering motivational speeches and serving as advocates for FFA on a global scale.

The National FFA Organization is a school-based national youth leadership development organization of more than 735,000 student members as part of 8,817 local FFA chapters in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.