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When NeVelle Skaggs was in FFA, he was the club’s top fruit seller for four years. Years later, his daughter Lexie was named the top seller more than once.
Sales is clearly in the Skaggs’ genes and, like her father, Lexie is using those skills for more than produce.
Skaggs, 18, earned a State Star in Agribusiness at this summer’s state FFA convention after she successfully started her own business at the age of 15 selling horse and livestock trailers and other accessories. Skaggs, a John Hardin High School graduate, is now a student at Western Kentucky University and spends her weekends running the operation.
Skaggs joined FFA her freshman year, following in the footsteps of her father. She liked the family connection and the opportunities to build skills for her future.
“I knew I wanted to be a part of something bigger than myself,” she said.
Skaggs began considering trying for the agribusiness award and needed to select a type of business that she could own. Her dad suggested something that involved sales.
NeVelle Skaggs owns Skaggs RV Outlet, so Lexie grew up around that type of business. She recalls showing a potential customer the interior of an RV when she was 5 years old.
Lexie had been considering purchasing a horse trailer of her own, which sparked the idea of selling them. She began purchasing used trailers for resell .
Her sales dipped after her first year due to the recession, she said, but last year was a comeback year for her.
“I’ve been fortunate in that way,” she said.
Now Skaggs buys new trailers from manufacturers as well. She scheduled her classes for her freshman year at WKU to allow for time to meet with sales representatives to purchase new units and discuss trends in the industry.
At the end of her senior year in high school, Skaggs submitted paperwork on her business to be considered for the agribusiness award at the regional level. She was selected as one of 12 regional winners that competed against each other at state, and went on to be chosen as the overall winner.
“I was totally shocked and I didn’t really know what to do,” she said.
She continues to be an advocate for agriculture and for the FFA because of the positive impact it’s had on her.
Skaggs is now majoring in agribusiness and communications. While she’s considering other careers as well, she plans to continue with her business.
“I just love the thrill of sales,” she said.
Kelly Cantrall can be reached at 270-505-1747 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Where I live: Bowling Green
Favorite film: "Top Gun"
Favorite musician: Luke Bryan
Favorite class at WKU: Ag mechanization lecture and lab