LITTLE ROCK – Arkansas Farm Bureau recognized Addison Safley of Searcy High School in White County as its Outstanding Ag Educator. Hampton High School’s Zach Hammack earned the Outstanding New Ag Educator Award, and Harrison High School grabbed the top spot as the Outstanding Ag Education Program. All were recognized Nov. 29 at Farm Bureau’s 89th Annual Convention at the Statehouse Convention Center in Little Rock.
The Outstanding Ag Educator award recognizes a high school agriculture education instructor for efforts in teaching young people about agriculture, leadership and involvement in the National FFA Organization.
“I’m blessed to lead an agriculture program and FFA chapter with students who are dedicated to our industry and our community,” Safley said. “I feel fortunate to play just a small role in teaching these students and helping them remain invested in the future of our state’s agriculture industry.”
Hammack earned the top New Ag Educator Award for his work at Hampton High School. “Teaching is not my first career, but I’m grateful for this chapter of my life and career opening and for this opportunity,” Hammack said. “To work with these students, in the community that I grew up in, is beyond all that I believed possible. I’m incredibly fortunate to work with them and honored for this recognition.”
Harrison High School was recognized for its ag education program, led by advisers Skip Emmett, Alex Hale and Megan Morris. The Harrison FFA program has grown from 28 members to 216 in just three school years. The work to build a complete program has included career and leadership development, livestock showing, classroom education and the Supervised Agricultural Experience projects that take classroom learning to in-field experience.
“Not only are we working to create meaningful classroom experiences, but we’re striving to meet other areas of focus the students have in order to build a complete and successful program. We couldn’t do any of this without our administration, who have been crucial in supporting our work to transform Harrison FFA into what it is today,” said Megan Morris, Harrison FFA adviser.