FFA Timeline

  • 1917

    The Smith-Hughes National Vocational Education Act (both Smith and Hughes were Georgia Congressmen) established vocational agriculture courses.
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  • 1925

    Virginia Tech agricultural education teacher educators Henry Grose close, Harry Sanders, Walter S. Newman and Edmund C. Magill organized the Future Farmers of Virginia for boys in agriculture classes. The FFV served as the model for the Future Farmers of America.
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    I think these years are important
    1925 and 2006
  • 1926

    The American Royal Livestock Show invited vocational agriculture students to participate in national livestock judging contests in Kansas City, Mo.
  • 1928

    Future Farmers of America was established in Kansas City, Mo. • First National FFA Convention held in Kansas City: 33 delegates from 18 states in attendance. • Leslie Applegate of New Jersey was selected as the first national FFA president. • First sectional gathering of New Farmers of America members held.
  • 1929

    National blue and corn gold adopted as official colors. • Carlton Patton of Arkansas named first Star Farmer of America, one of the first awards created by FFA. • At the Second National FFA Convention in November 1929, 33 states represented by 64 delegates. • Thirty-five state associations with approximately 1,500 chapters and 30,000 members affiliated with the national organization.
  • 1933

    Blue corduroy jackets adopted as Official Dress. • A group of FFA officers and members made a pilgrimage to Washington, D.C., where they were greeted on the White House lawn by President Franklin D. Roosevelt.
  • 1935

    New Farmers of America founded in Tuskegee, Ala. • Active FFA membership exceeded 100,000 members.
  • 1942

    During World War II, when tens of thousands of FFA members served in the armed services, national FFA conventions were streamlined events where only delegates and award winners attend. In 1942, just 217 people attended the convention.
  • 1944

    Future Farmers of America Foundation formed to raise money from business, industry, government, individuals and sponsors for FFA programs and activities. • 138,548 FFA members were serving in the Armed Services in World War II. • First National FFA Agricultural Proficiency Award presented for Agricultural Mechanics.
  • 1950

    A bill was passed by the 81st Congress of the United States that granted FFA a federal charter and specified that a U.S. Department of Education staff member be the national FFA advisor. On Aug. 30, President Harry S. Truman signed the bill, and it became Public Law 81-740.
  • 1952

    First issue of The National Future Farmer magazine published.
  • 1953

    The U.S. Post Office Department issued a special stamp to celebrate the 25th anniversary of FFA. • President Dwight D. Eisenhower was the first president to speak at a national FFA convention.
  • 1965

    New Farmers of America merged with the Future Farmers of America.
  • 1969

    FFA opens membership to girls, making it possible for them to hold office and participate in competitive events at regional and national levels. • First National Star in Agribusiness, Ken Dunagan from Arizona, named. • Washington Conference (now called the Washington Leadership Conference) began. • Delegate body of the national FFA convention established alumni class of membership as part of the constitution
  • 1971

    The National FFA Alumni Association chartered as an affiliate of the National FFA Organization.
  • 1982

    Jan Eberly, from California, became the first female national FFA president.
  • 1988

    • Future Farmers of America changed its name to the National FFA Organization to reflect the growing diversity in the industry of agriculture. • Seventh and eighth grade students permitted to become FFA members. • Agriscience Student Recognition Program introduced.
  • 1994

    Corey Floury, from Illinois, was the first African-American to be elected national FFA president; he was also the first urban student leader.
  • 1999

    72nd National FFA Convention held in Louisville, Ky., for the first time. • First National Creed Speaking event held. Winner: Michael Van Winkle, Arkansas.
  • 2006

    National FFA Foundation receives first $1 million contribution from the Ford Motor Company. • 79th National FFA Convention held in Indianapolis, Ind., for the first time, with 54,489 in attendance. • Endorsement of agricultural education long-range goal of 10,000 quality agricultural education programs by 2015, where every student is a member of FFA and has a relevant SAE.
  • 2007

    The National FFA Merchandise Center opened its doors in Indianapolis, Ind. • Membership broke the half-million mark with 500,823 members in 7,358 chapters. • FFA New Horizons added online feature, www.FFA new horizons.org.