Gabe Hicks was selected as the State FFA Proficiency Winner in Turfgrass Management.  Hicks is a member of the Seneca FFA Chapter of the Illinois Association FFA.  Gabe owns and operates Hicks Lawn Service which performs lawn care service in Morris, Seneca, Marseilles, and Ottawa.   

Illinois FFA recognizes students in forty-eight different areas based on their work-based learning, also known as Supervised Agricultural Experiences or SAE.  FFA members who demonstrate outstanding agricultural skills and competencies through record keeping, leadership, and scholastic achievement may be considered for this award.  SAEs allow students to learn by either owning and operating an agricultural business, working or serving an internship at an agriculture-based business or conducting an agriculture-based scientific experiment and reporting results.

Hicks was selected as the State Winner by a committee of agriculture teachers, industry friends, parents and volunteers knowledgeable in this work-based area, who reviewed their records online and then conducted interviews at Eisenhower High School, Decatur, IL on Saturday, March 25, 2023.  Hicks is the son of David and Courtney Hicks of Seneca.

Receiving this honor now makes Gabe eligible to compete in the National FFA Awards Selection process in July, 2023.  Hicks was previously chosen as the Chapter, Section and District awardee of this area.

Hicks has been involved in several other agricultural education and FFA activities and recently received his State FFA Degree. He was also named the Star in Agribusiness for Section 7 FFA.  Jeff Maierhofer, Mitch Miller, and Cally Diss are the agriculture teachers and FFA Advisors at Seneca High School.

Gabe will receive plaques for his accomplishments and be celebrated for this great achievement.  These plaques are made possible by gifts by individuals, businesses, corporations and organizations through the Illinois Foundation FFA.