February 2, 2016

Why I Ran for State Office

Author: Albert Zeng

Some DECA members know from the beginning that they want to run for state office. Others are not as interested in officer positions, and simply want to compete. However, if you are in the middle and are unsure if state office is right for you, then I hope that this blog post will help you decide.
To start off, I’d like to say that being a state officer is not just about gaining a title to write on your resume; it’s about making a difference in the lives of DECA members and being the best leader you can be in order to guide the organization to a better and brighter future. In carrying this mindset, you will be able to grow and develop into a better leader and a kinder, more capable individual.
If you are unsure that you are fit to be a state officer, let me tell you that I had that same doubt my sophomore year when I wanted to run for Vice President of Silicon Valley. At the time, I was quite shy and wasn’t sure that I could lead a whole district. However, I eventually chose to run because I decided that while I may not have had the skills to be a leader yet, perhaps serving as a state officer would help me gain those skills. This is the mindset I hope you all carry with you when deciding if state office is right for you. Not all state officers start out as great leaders, and for every single one of us, state office is a learning process. At every conference, every event, and every speech, I made it a goal to learn something new. It was this process of continual learning and growing that helped me become who I am today.
State office is not for everyone; it requires dedication, courage, and creativity. However, so long as you are willing to learn, all of these things will come to you in time. The experience of being a state officer is one of the most rewarding you will ever have in high school. The skills in leadership you gain are unique and essential to any career, and both your impact on the organization and the bonds you make with your state officer team will last for countless years.
In the end, you simply have to ask yourself a few questions: Do you have a passion for DECA? Do you want to make a difference for DECA members? Are you willing to learn?
If you answered “yes” to these questions, then I hope to see you at the State Career Development Conference as a state officer candidate.

About California DECA
California DECA is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) Career and Technical Student Organization, endorsed by the California Department of Education. With over 4,500 members in 59 schools throughout California, California DECA works to prepare emerging leaders and entrepreneurs in four fields of business: marketing, finance, hospitality, and management. For more information about California DECA, visit


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California DECA