Members of the Stillman Valley High School Future Business Leaders of America pose for a picture together at the Illinois State Conference.


Stillman Valley FBLA attends Illinois State Conference
Stillman Valley’s Future Business Leaders of America attended the Illinois State Conference on Friday and Saturday, April 4 and 5 in Springfield. The trip not only included the State Conference, but Stillman Valley members also toured the State Capital where they were able to watch the House of Representatives in session. They received a tour by Senator Dave Syverson’s Secretary, who was amazing. Members also received free passes to visit the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum. The last stop of the tour was visiting the Abraham Lincoln monument. Members who went to Springfield were Misael Guerrero (President), Nicole Bredeson (Vice President), Elizabeth Oltmanns (Secretary), Tyler Kubiszewski (Reporter), Michael Cavenagh (Historian), Logan Apsey (Web Master), Richie Sutliff, Victor Silva, and Casey Madeen. Advisers in attendance were Mr. Ryan Read, Mrs. Tammy Pierson and Ms. Cathie Murphy.
At the State Conference, Stillman Valley members were able to attend various workshops as well as compete in various online testing and presentations in the areas of business and technology. They were also able to attend the FBLA dance, participate in the Talent Show and the scavenger hunt in the late evening, Tyler Kubiszewski stated after the conference ended, “I loved everything. I will never forget all the workshops!” “The State Competition was out of this world. The competition down in Springfield had you stepping out of your comfort zone, which made it fun….,” stated FBLA member Michael Cavenagh.
In State competition, Richie Sutliff placed 5th in Introduction to Public Speaking and Misael Guerrero finished 7th in Computer Problem Solving. The awards were presented to FBLA members at the two State general session meetings. When asked about his overall experience of the general sessions, Logan Apsey stated, “The general session felt like a concert and an award show all in one.”
The FBLA Stillman Valley Chapter also earned Chapter awards. The Chapter finished in 2nd place for the March of Dimes Award based on per capita as well as finishing in 6th place for the American Enterprise Project, 6th place in the Local Business Chapter Project and 7th place in the Community Service Project. Presently, there are 92 FBLA chapters in the State of Illinois with 76 Chapters in attendance.
The Business Achievement Awards (BAA) were also acknowledged at the conference. For the Future Award Level, Stillman Valley members recognized were Michael Cavenagh, Logan Apsey, Elizabeth Oltmanns, Justin Simpson and Noah Coppernoll. For the Business Award Level, Nicole Bredeson, Michael Cavenagh and Elizabeth Oltmanns were honored. At the Leader Level, members recognized were Elizabeth Oltmanns, Misael Guerrero and Nicole Bredeson. For the highest level, the American Award, there were only three FBLA members in the entire State of Illinois that accomplished this feat. Stillman Valley’s Misael Guerrero was one of those three. After completing the award, Misael stated, “…I couldn’t have done it without the help of my advisors as well as Nicole and Elizabeth. They helped me with a lot of the activities. I couldn’t have done it without them. I’m just glad I was able to finish first.” Misael is the first member in Stillman history to complete this top-level prestige award!
Stillman Valley members were also recognized for their service hours work. Honored at the Community Level (over 50 hours +) and recognized at the State conference were Elizabeth Oltmanns, Michael Cavenagh, Tyler Kubiszewski, Victor Silva and Nicole Bredeson. Honored for completing the Service Level (200 hours +) were Misael Guerrero and Elizabeth Oltmanns.
After the conference ended, Mr. Ryan Read, FBLA Adviser stated, “”FBLA State is more than competition and awards. It’s about Networking: stepping out of your comfort zone and learning how to be a leader.” Members who attend the National and State Conferences are given a unique opportunity to network with students and business people around the State as well as other States. “Networking is vital in the business world, and these students who are attending and competing in these FBLA conferences, competitions and workshops are building their resumes for the future and getting a step up over their job competitors,” stated Cathie Murphy, FBLA Adviser. “Regardless of the career choice, every student will one day be entering into the business world and they need to be prepared to compete on all levels. This is the opportunities that FBLA provides.”
Congratulations to all the members of Stillman’s FBLA Chapter for their hard work and dedication in developing their skills in leadership, service, communication and business/technology.
For more information on Stillman Valley’s FBLA Chapter, please visit their Website @ You may also contact any FBLA member or adviser.

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