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  • Writer's pictureThe Show Circuit

Hereford Youth Receive Vanier Family Scholarships

(Pictured l to r): HYFA Board Member Steve Folkman, 2019 HYFA President Ray Ramsey, HYFA Vice President George Sprague, HYFA Board Member Jill Bielema, Dixie Miller, Montana Lawrence, Rachael Bagnell, Katie Nolles, KC Barnes, Taylor Belle Matheny, Abbygail Pitstick, Hattie Duncan, Blakelee Hayes, HYFA Board Members Nancy Keilty, Katie Colyer, Kathy Buchholz and Bill King.

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Ten National Junior Hereford Association (NJHA)

members were awarded a $10,000 Jack and Donna Vanier Scholarship Friday,

Oct. 25, at the American Hereford Association (AHA) Hereford Honorees

Reception during the AHA Annual Meeting and Conference in Kansas City, Mo.

These scholarships were 10 of 30 awarded through the Hereford Youth

Foundation of America (HYFA) totaling more $180,000. The Vanier Family of CK Ranch in Brookville, Kan., donated 10 scholarships totaling $100,000 to youth who demonstrate a commitment to higher education and who have overcome obstacles in their lives.

Rachael Bagnell, Slater, Mo.

Rachael is a sophomore at the University of Missouri-Columbia, majoring in

agricultural education. The 19-year-old daughter of Bob and Tonya Bagnell is

currently serving as the president for the Missouri Junior Hereford Association.

Along with being a member of the University of Missouri’s Block and Bridle and

Collegiate FFA, Rachael still assists her parents on their purebred Hereford

operation. She hopes to pursue a master’s degree after the completion of her


KC Barnes, Hulbert, Okla.

KC is currently a graduate student at the University of Arkansas, pursuing a

master’s in agricultural economics. The son of Kent and Diana Barnes was on

the Oklahoma State University (OSU) meat judging team during his

undergraduate career. He also served as president for the Oklahoma Junior

Hereford Association and past secretary for the American Farmers and Ranchers

Collegiate Farm Bureau.

Hattie Duncan, Wingate, Ind.

Hattie is a sophomore at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, majoring

in animal science. The 19-year-old daughter of David and Jill Duncan currently

works in the beef nutrition lab on campus, assisting graduate students with their

projects. Hattie has grown up raising Hereford cattle. She hopes her future

career allows her to make a positive impact on the beef industry.

Blakelee Hayes, Ada, Okla.

Blakelee is currently a sophomore at Oklahoma State University, where she is

studying animal science with a focus on animal nutrition. Blakelee is the daughter

of the late Jeff and Jennifer Hayes, and she has been showing cattle at the local,

state and national levels since 2008. She is a member of the Oklahoma Junior

Cattlemen’s Association and the NJHA.

Montana Lawrence, Princeton, Minn.

Montana is a political science and studio art major at the University of Minnesota-

Morris. The 21-year-old daughter of Bryan and Marytina Lawrence currently

serves as a board member for the NJHA. For Montana being a board member

has given her the opportunity to inspire and positively influence fellow NJHA

members. While in college, Montana recognized the need for agricultural

representatives throughout the political system, which has led her to pursue a

law degree once she has finished her bachelor’s degree.

Taylor Belle Matheny, Mays Lick, Ky.

Taylor Belle is the 22-year-old daughter of Andrew and Suzanne Matheny. She is

currently a graduate student at Texas Tech University, studying agricultural

communication and is the chairman of the NJHA. During her time earning a

bachelor’s degree at Kansas State University, Taylor Belle was very active on

campus and served as an ambassador for the College of Agriculture. This

position allowed her to interact with prospective students and ultimately led her to

discover her passion for student recruitment and finding her assistantship atTexas Tech.

Dixie Miller, Lincoln, Ark.

Dixie is a junior studying animal science and agricultural communications at the

University of Arkansas (U of A). She is the 21-year-old daughter of Christy

Westlin. Dixie has been an active member of the NJHA and has served as an

ambassador for JNHE and has attended the Faces of Leadership Conference.

Dixie was selected as the 2019 Hutchinson Community College Young Female

Kansan of the Year while she finished up her junior college livestock judging

career. During her time a U of A, she is serving as an office assistant for the

animal science department.

Katie Nolles, Bassett, Neb.

Katie is the daughter of Mike and Trudy Nolles. She is an agricultural education

major at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, completing her student teaching at

this time. She has served as a National Hereford Queen and a past Nebraska

State FFA vice president. Katie plans to pursue a master’s program in school

counseling or curriculum design. With her degree, she hopes to inspire the next

generation of agriculturists and is excited to serve students in rural communities.

Abbygail Pitstick, South Solon, Ohio

Abbygail is currently attending Wilmington College and is the daughter of Neil

and Elizabeth Pitstick. The 19-year-old sophomore is majoring in animal science.

While at school, she maintains an integral role in her family’s cattle operation.

Abbygail served as the 2018 National Hereford Queen and recently interned with

The Showtimes magazine for its Blackout 7 show. Abbygail plans on furthering

her education and pursuing a master’s degree in animal nutrition.

Peyton Schmitt, Birmingham, Iowa

Peyton is a student at Iowa State University, majoring in agriculture and life

sciences education with a communications option. The 21-year-old daughter of

Ron and Karin Schmitt is passionate about sharing the story of agriculture with

consumers and hopes to serve as an advocate for the agriculture industry. This

passion led Peyton to a position with the Coalition to Support Iowa’s Farmers as

a communications intern.

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