MEMPHIS, Tenn. - October 14, 2016 - More than 60,000 high school and college Future Farmers of America (FFA) members and alumni will convene in Indianapolis Oct. 21-24 to celebrate youth leadership in agriculture during the National Convention and Expo.

For the fifth consecutive year, Ducks Unlimited (DU) will have a strong presence at the convention to spread the word about DU's wetlands and waterfowl conservation mission.

"Interacting with thousands of young people who share our core values - stewardship of the land, conservation of natural resources and a love of waterfowling - is truly inspiring," said Mark Horobetz, manager of youth and education programs for Ducks Unlimited. "We are proud to offer FFA members and advisors the opportunity to give back to the resources we all cherish by starting a DU Varsity (high school) chapter. This program allows students to learn about wetland conservation, raise money for DU's conservation mission and hone their personal leadership skills."

This year, DU staff will lead breakout sessions on how to become involved in a DU Varsity fundraising chapter.

Along with informational material, including internship opportunities, DU will have backpacks, DU/FFA branded duck calls and other merchandise for the students to take home.

For the second year in a row, DU will partner with corporate supporter Purina Pro Plan to provide a one-of-a-kind experience at the convention.

"All of us at Purina are excited about the opportunity to partner with DU for the 89th National FFA Convention & Expo. With Purina Pro Plan brand dog food as the exclusive dog food sponsor of DU, Purina brings a wealth of expertise in nutrition, training and conditioning for retrievers and other sporting dogs and their owners," said Karl Gunzer, senior manager, Professional Engagement Team, Nestle Purina PetCare. "Convention participants can pose for a photo with a Purina Pro Plan dog, talk with our professional dog trainer and pick up a sample of Purina Pro Plan Sport Performance formula dog food while visiting the booth."

As a way to connect with the students and spread the conservation message, DU encourages attendees to share their photos on social media platforms using various hashtags including #duckdog #proplandog #TransformFFA and #ducksunlimited. Photos from the event will be shared on DU's official Twitter and Instagram accounts.

Ducks Unlimited Inc. is the world's largest nonprofit organization dedicated to conserving North America's continually disappearing waterfowl habitats. Established in 1937, Ducks Unlimited has conserved more than 13.8 million acres thanks to contributions from more than a million supporters across the continent. Guided by science and dedicated to program efficiency, DU works toward the vision of wetlands sufficient to fill the skies with waterfowl today, tomorrow and forever. For more information on our work, visit

Media Contact:
Ashley Ward