2008-09 Beef Ambassadors

Siskiyou County native selected as the 2008-2009 California Beef Ambassador
Photo of Jessica Sampson, winner of the California Beef Ambassador contest
Jessica Sampson, a native of northern California and a senior at Yreka High School took home first place honors in the senior division. She is active in her high school FFA chapter, livestock judging and exhibiting market steers and market lambs throughout California. Sampson plans to attend University of California, Davis this fall, pursuing a bachelor’s degree in agriculture business.

As the winner of the senior division of the California Beef Ambassador Contest, Sampson will be competing in the National Beef Ambassador contest to be held in October in Oklahoma City, Okla. The top five contestants in the national competition become part of the National Beef Ambassador Team and will travel throughout the country in late 2008 and 2009 promoting beef and the beef industry.

Liz Hurd, a senior at Arroyo Grande High School was recognized as runner-up in the contest. Hurd is active in her local 4-H club and FFA chapter. She plans to attend California State University, Chico in the fall, majoring in agriculture business.
Photo of winners from Beef Ambassador contest
Sampson received a $400 cash prize sponsored by the California Beef Council and Hurd was awarded $300.

Other contestants in the 2008-09 California Beef Ambassador Contest senior division were Rochelle Borror, Tehama County; Matthew Bowen, Kern County; Sara Dabovich, Shasta County; and Victoria Mena, Napa/Solano County.
Jullian Van Tassel, a junior at Escalon High School was the winner of the junior division. She has worked on her grandparents’ commercial cattle operation, is very active in FFA and has exhibited steers at her county fair. Kiena Sanders, a sophomore at Lassen Union High School, who is also active in FFA and exhibits livestock at numerous fairs, received runner-up honors in the junior division. Van Tassel was awarded $200 for taking home first place honors and Sanders received $100 for runner-up in the junior division.
Amber Anderson, Shasta County; Maddison Easley, Placer/Nevada County; and Jaylene Scott, Siskiyou County also competed in the junior division contest.

At the conclusion of the competition, contestants enjoyed a lunch at Five Star Land & Livestock in Wilton, Calif. and took part in a media training conducted by Christie Van Egmond, program development coordinator for the California Beef Council. The CBC cosponsored the contest and provided the cash prizes for the winners.

CCW Coordinator for this year’s California Beef Ambassador Contest was Barbara Cowley of Montague, Calif. Judges were Noelle G. Cremers, director of natural resources and commodities for the California Farm Bureau Federation; Stevie Ipsen, director of public relations and outreach for the California Cattlemen’s Association; and Cliff Stokes, Ph.D., professor emeritus, Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo. Holly Foster, associate editor with Drover’s Journal served as a judge for the Issues Response portion of the contest and Tracy Sellers, reporter for the television show “California Country” interviewed the contestants for the Media Interview segment of the competition.
-Photos and article by Christie Van Egmond
California Beef Council
4640 Northgate Blvd., Suite 115
Sacramento, CA  95834
(916) 925-BEEF (2333)  Phone