Stanly Community College student makes history on national level

Published 9:16 am Wednesday, July 19, 2023

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Toby Ken Neal, a student from Stanly Community College, has been elected as the national president for Future Business Leaders of America Collegiate (FBLA-C), becoming the first national president from North Carolina and the first to serve while a student at a community college.

Neal served this past year as national parliamentarian. He also serves as executive vice president of the state FBLA-C chapter, following a term as vice president of communications.

Toby Neal upon his election as the national president of FBLA-C. (Contributed)

As national president, he will serve a one-year term on the national FBLA Board of Directors. SCC’s Dan Hazlett is one of three Collegiate Division advisers on the national Board of Directors.

The opening session included campaign speeches by the officer candidates, followed by a question-answer period. Candidates also spent time talking with delegates personally at their campaign booths during conference breaks.

“Of course, the entire North Carolina delegation was excited as Toby spoke,” Hazlett commented. “He handled the pressure and was so professional and ‘presidential’ with his speech. His election comes as the SCC chapter begins the 50th anniversary of its 1974 charter so it is a perfect way to begin the celebration.”

Neal has served as the SCC chapter president the past two years, with the chapter receiving Gold Seal Chapter designations at the state and national levels both years. He also made the presentation that earned SCC the 2023 state and national first place awards in the “State of the Chapter” competitive event.

Neal is a president’s list student pursuing his Bachelor of Arts degree. After graduation from SCC, he plans to obtain his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in political science and history with the goal of teaching and serving in public office.

While at SCC, he has been the college’s recipient and nominee for the Community College System’s Governor Robert Scott Leadership Award as well as the Academic Excellence Award recipient featured on the system’s website. He has also served as an officer of the Student Government Association.

“I cannot say enough good things about the opportunities I have had while at Stanly Community College,” Neal said. “The instructors and staff have been extremely supportive, and FBLA Collegiate has opened so many doors for me to develop and use my leadership interests. I’m proud to represent SCC, Stanly County and the North Carolina Community College System at the national level. I never anticipated or would have predicted such an honor when I enrolled, and I am appreciative of the encouragement I have received.”

SCC President Dr. John Enamait commented on the recognition Neal’s work has brought to the College.

“Toby’s election to this highest of national offices reflects the value of student organizations as the college strives not only to train qualified employees but also develop strong leaders for businesses and communities. We’re honored to have him represent Stanly Community College at this level.”