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2016 Young Gun of Ag ~ finalists

​Meet the 2016 Young Gun of Ag finalists, Kelsey Rose Ducheneaux and Payton Eagle Pravecek. We expect to see a lot of these young women in the years to come. As you'll soon find out, they're both dedicated to the agriculture industry - and promotiong ag among their peers. The future of our industry looks bright, thanks to these two exceptional role models.

Award recipients will be announced on Oct. 6 during the evening program at our annual conference. Winners will recieve gift baskets with items donated from local businesses. {Thank you prize sponsors!}










breathes and promotes agriculture on a daily basis. On any given day she’s riding horses, working cattle, studying for her graduate classes from Colorado State University, working with youth, or flying across the country to inspire and energize the next generation of youth in ag. She is a wonderful example of what dedication and passion for ag can be for young people across the reservation, across the state, and among the 562+ Tribal nations. Learn more about Kelsey.

“Kelsey is a catalyst that has the desire, knowledge and passion to bridge the age gap that exists in agriculture; her role is vital in the preservation and continuation of South Dakota’s most valuable resource - agriculture. She is inspiring, encouraging and helping young people in South Dakota and the nation to become passionate and dedicated to the preservation of agriculture and carrying on generations of traditional practices.” ~ Donita Fischer


                                                              Payton Eagle Pravecek is the 18-year-old daughter of Ben and Amy Pravecek, of Winner.                                                                She has always been a key member on her family ranch/farm where she helps with chores
                                                              and harvest time. Payton has participated in FFA and served as vice president of the
                                                              Winner FFA chapter this past year. She has achieved greatness throughout her FFA
                                                              career, including outstanding junior of the year, Star Farmer, two-time state proficiency
                                                              winner, and earned her state FFA degree. In 2016, Payton competed in the South Dakota
                                                              Miss United States Agriculture competition where she was crowned the South Dakota
                                                              Miss United States Agriculture. In June, Payton was named Miss United States
                                                              Agriculture at the national pageant, in Alabama, allowing her to share the vital role that
                                                              agriculture plays from a workforce and consumer standpoint. She has been very successful
                                                              in both 4H and high school rodeos and is very active in 4H. Payton is in her first year at
                                                              South Dakota State University, where she will major in Animal Science, with a minor in
                                                              Equine Management. She is also competing on SDSU’s rodeo team. Upon completion of her four-year undergraduate degree, Payton will attend veterinary school. She plans to stay in her home state of South Dakota, ranch and continue her service to farmers and ranchers through veterinary medicine. Learn more about Payton.

“Payton is the epitome of agriculture. She is a mentor to all ages. She is extremely knowledgeable of the past present and future of agriculture not only in the state of South Dakota but in this country. She is a born leader, believes in hard work, is passionate about agriculture, and is extremely dedicated to anything she puts her mind to.” ~ Melissa Clemetson

 “She has an unwavering loyalty to the betterment of all the industries within agriculture and is constantly looking for ways to learn more and improve herself.” ~Wyatt DeJong



Kelsey Rose Ducheneaux was raised on a ranch on the Cheyenne River Reservation. She earned a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Range Science and a minor in Botany from South Dakota State University. She is a Gates Millennium Scholarship recipient and a member of the Alpha Zeta Honor Society. She was actively involved in several SDSU student organizations and was the recipient of distinguishable awards and honors, which contributed to her progression through the nomination process and ultimately her selection to represent the SDSU undergraduate class of 2015 as commencement speaker. In addition to full-time ranching responsibilities, she is the Project Coordinator for Project H3lp!; the non-profit organization established at the family ranch. She also works part-time in a joint effort for the University of Arkansas Indigenous Food and Agriculture Initiative as the Youth Programs Coordinator, and the Intertribal Agriculture Council where she coordinates regional youth summits that bring Native youth together for experiential and classroom learning, focusing on food and agriculture. Kelsey lives,

Kelsey Rose Ducheneaux

Payton Eagle Pravecek

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