Levi Zwirn of the Yuma (CO) FFA Chapter was the national winner for the FFA Beef Production - Entrepreneurship Proficiency award program for 2010. Four finalists competed to be named the national winner during the 83rd National FFA Convention, Oct. 20-23, in Indianapolis, IN.

Proficiency awards recognize FFA members who excelled as agricultural entrepreneurs, employees or volunteers while they gained hands-on career experience. Beef Production - Entrepreneurship is one of 47 FFA proficiency award categories offered at local, state and national levels. Beef Production is sponsored by Bayer Animal Health and Nasco Division International, Inc., as a special project of the National FFA Foundation.

In recognition of being a finalist, the four winners received a plaque and $500. The national winner of the category received an additional $500 during a special ceremony at the National FFA Convention.

Breeding beef cattle is a lifestyle for Zwirn. In his constant pursuit to improve his operation, he has increased his herd to 100 head of cattle, purchased a donor cow and maintained detailed records. He raises feeder calves in a feedlot separate from his replacement females, and he retains ownership until the market is at the best price to sell them.