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RIBUS President, Steve Peirce is a proud Forever Blue Network member (National FFA Organization) and was recently featured in their May Five Questions series. The FFA Forever Blue Network is about reconnecting with those who made a difference in your life, reaching out to those you can impact now and finding a new world of opportunities. As a result, their series Five Questions explores the lives of Forever Blue Network members.

Q1:  What are some of the biggest professional challenges you have faced, and how did/does your FFA background help navigate those? 

Steve:  Leading an organization and blazing a new trail. As a former manager within a major corporation and now as a co-founder of a smaller company, leadership is critical. Starting a company from scratch requires vision, confidence and reliance on resources. These are the things I observed in FFA. At state and national conventions, seeing people my age leading the convention, their ag projects, their business and younger students.

Q2:  What made you decide your career path?

Steve:  By observing people I knew in agriculture, I developed a deep respect for their honesty, accomplishments and the way they conducted themselves. As I prepared for college and employment, I knew I wanted to be in agriculture. FFA was a vehicle to prepare me for where I wanted to go.

Q3:  As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up?

Steve:  A “professional.”  At first, I thought it would be a professional football player; that did not happen. As I saw what opportunities were available in agriculture, I never looked back. I was determined to become a professional in “agribusiness.”  I have been blessed and have had the opportunity to see much of the world representing U.S. agriculture in the food and dietary supplement industry.

Q4:  What is your favorite FFA memory? 

Steve:  Going to my first area leadership camp as a state FFA officer.  I forgot to bring my own bedsheets. The state sentinel was quick to let me know that I was not staying at the Holiday Inn. He and I still laugh about it today.

Q5:  Why do you support FFA?

Steve:  It is an opportunity to “give back” to an organization that gave me so much.