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Cy-Fair Chamber of Commerce Raises $24,000 for CFISD FFA Students

Cy-Fair Chamber of Commerce Raises $24,000 for CFISD FFA Students

March 31 2023

This past February, hundreds of Cy-Fair ISD FFA students showcased their projects at the annual CFISD Livestock Show & Sale held at the CFISD Exhibit Center. After diligently raising cattle, swine, poultry, goats, rabbits and lambs, the students showed their animals and held a record-breaking sale that generated more than $760,000, with no exhibits in the last third of the sale selling for less than $1,500.

One of the buyers at the sale included the John Fox Chamber Herd, a Cy-Fair Chamber of Commerce committee led by Debbie Blackshear, retired president of Cy-Fair FCU, and Mark McShaffry, owner of The Backyard Grill. The John Fox Chamber Herd was formed over 25 years ago with the sole purpose of purchasing animals exhibited at the Cy-Fair ISD FFA Livestock Show and Sale. The Herd pools funds from Cy-Fair Chamber of Commerce members and the community to support students through the purchase of their livestock projects, while also helping local food pantries through the contribution of the animal projects or processed meat.

This year, the John Fox Chamber Herd raised $24,000 to purchase animals from the hard working CFISD FFA students who participated in this year's Livestock Show and Sale. Fisher Ham & Meat Co. in Spring has processed the meat and local non-profits are currently picking up their share of the bounty to distribute to families in needs across the Cy-Fair area. This year, those non-profits include Cy-Fair Helping Hands, Cypress Assistance Ministries and the Boys and Girls ClubIn addition to providing meat to these organizations, a large portion of the funds raised will go to students in CFISD to help with scholarships and college funds.

Cy-Fair Helping Hands at Fisher Ham & Meat Co. to pick up their portion of processed meat
through the John Fox Chamber Herd program this year. (Source: Cy-Fair Helping Hands via Facebook)
John Fox was a dedicated member of the Cy-Fair Chamber of Commerce and former Chairman of the Board. As an advocate and passionate supporter of the Cy-Fair ISD FFA program, Fox would visit the barn and get to know the students' stories to see how their projects were coming along. Behind the desk, he initially sent letters as Herd Boss to each chamber member to request their donation to this worthy cause, then eventually emails towards the end of his tenure. He became ill with pancreatic cancer and passed away in 2015, but his legacy lives on. The Cy-Fair Chamber carried on the tradition, deciding that it would only be fitting to name this project in his honor. Mark McShaffry and Debbie Blackshear, who worked with John all those years, are now the co-herd bosses that help the Cy-Fair Chamber of Commerce continue to raise money to buy FFA projects for CFISD students.
John Fox in 2015, receiving an award in recognition of his 20 years of service at Chamber Herd Boss.
(Source: Cy-Fair Chamber of Commerce via Facebook)
For Cy-Fair Chamber of Commerce members and staff, the John Fox Chamber Herd isn't just another fundraiser. It's a beloved tradition rooted in a selfless passion to support hard working youth right in their own backyard, with all proceeds going to the students. For more information about the John Fox Chamber Herd and how you can be a part of it next year, please visit this Cy-Fair Chamber of Commerce website. 

By Tiffany Krenek, My Neighborhood News 
Tiffany Krenek has been on the My Neighborhood News team since August 2021. She is passionate about curating and sharing content that enriches the lives of our readers in a personal, meaningful way. A loving mother and wife, Tiffany and her family live in the West Houston/Cypress region.



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