Gauland's journey to FBLA State Presidency
SUN. | 10-31-21 | FEATURES
Last spring, Brena Gauland embarked on a new leadership journey that will carry her through her senior year at Rose.
On April 19, 2021, Gauland was elected to the office of North Carolina State Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) President, where she will expand her leadership role from the school to the state level.
Gauland has been an active, devoted member of Rose’s FBLA chapter throughout all four years of high school and is ecstatic to take on this new opportunity to serve and lead in her community.
“As soon as I joined [FBLA] I fell in love with it,” said Gauland. “FBLA has taught me so many things that will help me succeed in real life.”
In the early fall of 2020, Gauland began her tedious journey of applying and campaigning for NC FBLA State President.
“As someone who has a go big or go home personality and truly loves to lead and serve, President was the position that I want to run for,” said Gauland.
Although at the time she looked down a long, busy road full of essays, interviews and campaigning, she felt more enthusiastic about the opportunity to lead the State’s FBLA chapter than anxiety about the process to get there.
“Some may say that the process is stressful, but to me I found it exciting,” said Gauland. “The thought of
Photo contributed by Brena Gauland
getting to serve as State President kept me going throughout all of the paperwork and the process of running, and although I was nervous about the outcome, I just kept thinking about all of the ways I could serve if I was elected.”
After the official election results were released in March of 2021, Gauland quickly got to work alongside a team of new FBLA State officers. With a positive and hopeful attitude, Gauland traveled to meet these new officers in Raleigh in September of 2021, marking the first in-person State FBLA meeting in over a year and a half. She looked forward to this meeting for months, and even made a countdown calendar on a whiteboard in her room that she updated daily.
Although Gauland approaches this topic with sheer joy when asked about her new elected position, it should be noted that she isn’t just a pretty face for the program. Gauland has a variety of new administrative responsibilities, and oversees all of the FBLA regional chapters in the state.
“Some of the biggest duties I have for FBLA include presiding over and attending Executive Board meetings, organizing the program of work, leading and working with the state officer team, chapter officers and advisors, attending regional and state conferences and the National Leadership Conference,” said Gauland.
Although these jobs amount to a big time commitment and create a lot of extra work on top of her course load and college applications, Brena’s organized personality is more than up for the challenge.
“One of the biggest things about Brena is that she's passionate and very enthusiastic about everything she does, but most importantly with FBLA,” said Kurt Garner, Rose FBLA chapter advisor.
When anyone approaches Brena to talk to her about FBLA, it is apparent that her voice raises in pitch and races in tempo, as her excitement level rises.
“I just love the opportunity to lead other students to success,” said Gauland.
With Brena’s role as the Rose FBLA chapter and North Carolina FBLA State President, Garner is hopeful that she can inspire current and future members and officers to take this leadership path.
“A lot of people on the [State] Board have already said we need to run somebody else because they think that if everyone [at Rose is] like Brena, we have more in the queue,” said Garner.