The Tri-Point FFA member said it was an awesome feeling to receive the Goat Production — Entrepreneurship/Placement award during the 92nd National FFA Convention and Expo in Indianapolis.

“It was definitely a shock and surprise,” Hummel said.

Last year, the FFA member was named the winner of Small Animal Production and Care — Entrepreneurship/Placement for her project where she works at Select Exotics, a Savannah cat-breeding operation.

The FFA Convention was quite busy for Hummel since she also competed in the livestock judging career development event with the team from the Tri-Point Chapter.

“The livestock judging contest was a two-day contest on Wednesday and Thursday and I had to rush over to my interview for my goat project after the contest,” she said.

In 2018, Hummel had a similar situation when she was a member of the Tri-Point FFA team that competed in the Veterinary Science career development event.

“We placed third in that contest, only seven points behind first so we were a little heartbroken but still excited with that finish,” she said.

Hummel’s goat project consists of 15% entrepreneurship and 75% working for Hummel Livestock’s Boer meat goat breeding operation.

“At Hummel Livestock, I do every day tasks from feeding, cleaning pens and daily health care to more advanced skills like embryo transfer work, kidding goats, breeding animals and client relations,” said the daughter of Dale and Holly Hummel and Tom and Colleen Hanson.

For the entrepreneurship part of her project, Hummel shows two goats per year.

“I showed two wethers each year and I also showed goats for Hummel Livestock,” the national winner said.

In addition to county fairs and state fair, Hummel also has competed with her goats at national events.

“I’ve had grand or reserve overall national wins at the shows in Louisville, Denver and Kansas City,” she said. “We’re getting ready to go to the show in Louisville where I am also competing with the IllinoisState 4-H livestock judging team.”

Hummel started working with her family’s goat business at a young age by showing goats for her 4-H project.

“We expanded in high school and I started working at our farm which grew into a passion for working with the goats,” she said.

“We have about 250 does that are kept to bred through embryo transfer work and about 75 does that are naturally bred in our breeding program,” she said.

Hummel Livestock markets goats through online auctions.

“Our target is to sell wethers to 4-H and FFA families for showing,” Hummel said. “We also sell does that can be used for both show projects and breeding stock.”

In addition to her projects and competing in career development events, Hummel also served as her chapter reporter and chapter president during both her junior and senior year.

The FFA winner is attending LakeLandCollege and studying animal science, and she also is a member of the livestock judging team.

“I plan to transfer to a university to complete my degree in animal science and likely continue livestock judging,” Hummel said.

“I’m not sure if I will go to vet school, but it’s an option,” she said. “But regardless if I do or not, I plan to come home to the family farm to take over the goat and cat businesses.”

Advised by Diana Loschen, Hummel said, participating in FFA activities has helped her grow in many ways including public speaking.

“It has helped me with everything from organization, time management and record-keeping skills to how to handle myself in an interview with eight judges,” she said.

Martha Blum can be reached at 815-223-2558, ext. 117, or marthablum@agrinews-pubs.com. Follow her on Twitter at: @AgNews_Blum.

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