Glamorgan’s Laura is the pride of Young Farmers
Laura Elliott of Glamorgan YFC spoke of her joy and relief after being crowned the NFYFC Senior Member of the Year for 2015.
Laura, from Gower YFC, saw off stiff competition from six other members from across the country to take the coveted title back to Wales.
In a gruelling competition, finalists were grilled by judges on how they saw the Federation, their experiences with Young Farmers and the changes they would like to see within the Federation. Laura (pictured above) overcame her nerves and impressed the judges with her answers.
Laura, who is Vice Chair of Competitions with Wales YFC, said: "I was happy with how the interviews had gone, so I felt that I had done my best and that’s all I wanted to do. I’m absolutely overwhelmed. It was such a tough competition against some fantastic members."
"I was asked about the perceptions of women in engineering and the similarities there are with agriculture, so I talked about education and publicising more what happens, so we can break down those stereotypes. I was also asked if I won the lottery, what I would do to benefit Young Farmers. I said I would buy a YFC Centre for each county and give County Organisers a pay rise!
"I’ve been doing public speaking since I was 12, but it doesn’t get any easier. So standing up in front of people is always very nerve-wrecking. Because you don’t know what you’re going to be asked, it makes it even worse."
Laura's success at AGM was doubly sweet, having been part of the County Choir that won last year's competition in Blackpool. She said: "That was my first taste of national success and now it’s happened two years in a row, which is incredible. But this, I think, is the pinnacle of all competitions."
Now that she has won the award, Laura said she was looking forward to working alongside NFYFC: "I’m looking forward to getting more involved now with NFYFC, to give back as much as possible, because I’ve got so much out of Young Farmers and it’s time to put back in and help the younger ones with my experiences and make it all worthwhile.
"It’s been a strange AGM experience for me, compared to previous ones, but I’ve thoroughly enjoyed it and looking forward to some celebrations to round off a brilliant weekend."
And it wasn't just Laura who tasted success this weekend, as the following awards were handed out at AGM:
YFA Multimedia Trophy: Laura Flower, Derbyshire YFC
Top Trainers Award: Derbyshire YFC
NFU Trophy: Cumbria YFC
Tug Wilson Trophy: Devon YFC
Worshipful Company of Farmers Trophy: Derbyshire YFC
Prince of Wales Trophy: Cornwall YFC
Lionel Hill MBE Trophy: Wareham & Purbeck YFC, Dorset YFC
Sidney Fawcett Trophy: Trevor Jones, Kent YFC