Getting to Know the Speaker of the Bluegrass House

Kentucky YMCA Media Corps
2 min readDec 6, 2021

By: Alivia Shepherd

Ella Bussell is the current presiding Speaker of the Bluegrass House. She goes to Rockcastle County Highschool and is on their student council as their sophomore elect. She is also president of the Student YMCA, plays softball and is the manager of the basketball team.

An important part of Bussell’s job is that she gets to interact with all the kids at KYA and gets to hear and be involved with the bills. Also, she describes how fun it can be to hang out with kids her age and talk about important issues. Moreover, she loves the other presiding officers, they all work well with each other and have a great relationship. There is also a lot of work that goes into being a presiding officer such as conferences in the summer, zoom meetings, writing speeches and more. As some may assume, this is not at all just a three-day commitment. It’s an all-year-long nonstop, but rewarding, achievement.

To become a presiding officer, you have to talk to your advisor before KYA. Then, they will put you in as a candidate. On the first day, you will give a speech in front of your delegates, and yes, you’ll have to campaign throughout the weekend. You’ll also debate and get special privileges. Your position is decided upon how many votes you get from your fellow delegates. You learn very important skills while being a presiding officer that will help you later in life. For instance, she has learned about public speaking, talking to her peers, parliamentary procedure, responsibility skills, and making connections with people around the state were some of the skills.

She has been going to KYA since sixth grade, and she loves the conference. However, something she thinks is a super necessary change for a normal year is adding extra smoothie flavors. This would add a little something when the smoothies would come back by hopefully next year.