Leah Thimgan- University of Arizona
Leah Thimgan is an undergraduate from the University of Arizona. Although she was raised in the city, Leah’s passion for agriculture has led her to pursue an Agribusiness Management degree with a minor in Business Management. Leah is currently working on cultivating professional skills, broadening her knowledge of the agricultural industry, and furthering her understanding of business administration through involvement in several organizations like the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Ambassadors Program, MANRRS, Young Farmers and Ranchers, and Sigma Alpha. Her employment within the Business Services department of her college has also bolstered her experience within the areas of business management and administration. Leah is passionate about “AGvocating” for the use of innovative agricultural technologies and practices, with the hopes of one day contributing to the ultimate goal of increasing global food stability.
Katie Hanger- Maricopa County
Katie Hanger was born and raised on a dairy farm in Chandler, Arizona. Her family’s background in the dairy farm and livestock industry has instilled in her an innate passion for agriculture and the desire to serve as an agvocate for her community. Katie participated on the livestock judging team at Connors State College and Texas A&M University where she placed in the top 3 at multiple contests and was an All American. Her love of agriculture is what drove her to pursue a Bachelor in Animal Science and a Masters in Meat Science from Oklahoma State University. After graduation, Katie worked for National Beef Packing Company as a business analyst in Kansas City, Missouri, before returning home to Arizona. Now, she is an Assistant Vice President, loan officer, for Farm Credit Services Southwest, the largest agriculture lender in the country. Her portfolio allows her to serve farmers, ranchers, and dairymen in Phoenix and surrounding areas. Katie is also an active participant in Arizona’s Young Farmers and Ranchers Program, serves as the junior cattle superintendent for the Arizona National Livestock Show, is a mentor for the Maricopa County Beef Outreach Program, and enjoys hiking and playing volleyball in her free time.
Arizona Excellence in Ag Winner and AFBF YF&R Top 4 finalist
Terisha Driggs and Brian McKeighen- Pima County
Brian and Terisha own a small farm in Southern Arizona where they grow pecans, pears, hops, and raise livestock. They are first generation farmers. Though they met in high school through the FFA, they later reconnected when they discovered that they lived a mile away from each other in Phoenix. Wanting to reconnect to agriculture they moved to a small town in Southern Arizona where they are putting down roots and establishing their farm. Terisha is a lawyer with legal aid and Brian is a financial advisor, one day they hope to be full time farmers. Though most of their time is spent on the farm they are also very involved in their county Farm Bureau and YF&R.
For more information on these contests and applications please check out the page associated with the contest.