[inpost_fancy thumb_width=”200″ thumb_height=”200″ post_id=”965″ thumb_margin_left=”0″ thumb_margin_bottom=”0″ thumb_border_radius=”2″ thumb_shadow=”0 1px 4px rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.2)” id=”” random=”0″ group=”0″ border=”” show_in_popup=”0″ album_cover=”” album_cover_width=”200″ album_cover_height=”200″ popup_width=”800″ popup_max_height=”600″ popup_title=”Gallery” type=”fancy” sc_id=”sc1426015118565″]Clay Sapp, of Madison, was one of four state finalists in the American Farm Bureau Federation’s (AFBF) National Collegiate Discussion Meet competition. The competition was held during the AFBF 2015 FUSION conference last month, Feb. 13-16. The contest featured more than 60 college student frontrunners from across the country. Sapp and fellow Florida collegiate student Elise Stoddard of New Smyrna Beach both advanced to the Sweet 16 round in the national completion. Sapp went on to advance to the Final Four round and received a $1,000 scholarship and a plaque for his discussion skills. The contestants were evaluated on their exchange of ideas and information on a pre-determined topic. Participants build basic discussion skills, develop a keen understanding of important agricultural issues and work together as groups to solve problems. Sapp and Stoddard are both Agricultural Education and Communication majors at the University of Florida. Sapp served as Florida FFA State President and National FFA President in 2012-13 and won his state’s public speaking competition in 2010. He was a student body president his senior year in high school, salutatorian of his graduating class and a varsity baseball and tennis player. He also has an associate of arts degree from North Florida Community College. Stoddard was a member of the FFA New Smyrna Beach Chapter and grew up showing sheep at local and state fairs. She served as the Florida FFA Association Area 3 State Vice President and currently works for the National FFA organization as a presenter for various conferences. The FUSION conference (Farmers United: Skills, Inspiration, Outreach and Networking) is sponsored by the AFBF. In addition to being the venue for the competitive events, the conference provides attendees with a weekend of interactive workshops, motivational speakers, networking and tours of local agricultural operations. Florida Farm Bureau, the state’s largest general agricultural organization, represents more than 147,000 member-families. We serve to enhance farm enterprise and improve rural communities.