Golden Owl Award® winners and honorees are part of a select group of individuals devoted to impacting the lives of their students. We honor these outstanding agricultural educators for their tremendous contributions to helping the next generation of agricultural leaders.

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2020-2021 GOA Overall State Winners

California

Sandy Lovfald

California's Agricultural Educator of the Year

Sandy Lovfald

For her dedication to agricultural education at Eureka High School in Eureka, California, Sandy Lovfald was crowned the 2020-2021 California Agricultural Educator of the Year. Nominations described Lovfald as hardworking, dedicated and well respected within the agricultural education community. Read more »

Presented by Nationwide®, the California FFA and the California Farm Bureau.

California's honorees

Carrie Phillips Carrie Phillips
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
Central Region
Bret Harte High School
Angels Camp, California
Sandy Lovfald Sandy Lovfald
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
North Coast Region
Eureka High School
Eureka, California
Julie Luxon Julie Luxon
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
San Joaquin Region
Madera South High School
Madera, California
Luis Guerra Luis Guerra
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
South Coast Region
Santa Maria High School
Santa Maria, California
Brenda Davis-Landini Brenda Davis-Landini
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
District 5
Okawville High School
Okawville, Illinois
Tim Brown Tim Brown
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
Superier Region
Tulelake High School
Tulelake, California

Illinois

Sue Schafer

Illinois' Agricultural Educator of the Year

Sue Schafer

For her extraordinary work as an agricultural teacher at Taylorville High School in Taylorville, Illinois, Sue Schafer was chosen as the 2020-2021 Illinois Educator of the Year. Nominations described her as always putting her students first and being able to direct any student, ag background or not, toward success according to their individual talents and interests. Read more »

Presented by Nationwide®, the Illinois FFA, the Illinois Association of Vocational Agriculture Teachers, Compeer Financial and Farm Credit Illinois.

Illinois' honorees

Kindra Callahank Kindra Callahank
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
District 1
Kewanee High School
Kewanee, Illinois
Kyle Miller Kyle Miller
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
District 2
Prairie Central High School
Fairbury, Illinois
Corinne Briswell Corinne Briswell
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
District 3
West Praire High School
Sciota, Illinois
Sue Schafer Sue Schafer
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
District 4
Taylorville High School
Taylorville, Illinois
Joshua Berg Joshua Berg
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
District 5
Okawville High School
Okawville, Illinois

Indiana

Travis Scherer

Indiana's Agricultural Educator of the Year

Travis Scherer

Travis Scherer, an agricultural teacher at Tri-County High School in Wolcott, Indiana, was crowned the 2020-2021 Indiana Agricultural Educator of the Year. Nominations described Scherer as having made a huge impact on the lives of so many. Read more »

Presented by Nationwide®, the Indiana FFA and Farm Credit Mid-American.

Indiana's honorees

Amy Beer Amy Beer
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
District 2, Section 1
NorthWood High School
Nappanee, Indiana
Dale Griffin Dale Griffin
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
District 5, Section 2
Rossville High School
Rossville, Indiana
Mike A. Jones Mike A. Jones
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
District 6, Section 2
Adams Central High School
Monroe, Indiana
Tori McCreary Tori McCreary
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
District 8, Section 3
Mooresville High School
Mooresville, Indiana
Gabe Nobbe Gabe Nobbe
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
District 9, Section 3
Connersville High School
Connersville, Indiana
Erin Padgett Erin Padgett
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
District 12, Section 4
South Ripley High School
Versailles, Indiana
Travis Scherer Travis Scherer
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
District 1, Section 1
Tri-County High School
Wolcott, Indiana
Haley Verhaeghe Haley Verhaeghe
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
District 1, Section 1
Tri-County High School
Wolcott, Indiana

Iowa

Dr. Michael Retallick

Iowa's Agricultural Educator of the Year

Dr. Michael Retallick

For his essential and selfless role at Iowa State University in Ames, Iowa in preparing future generations for successful careers in agriculture, Dr. Michael Retallick was crowned the 2020-2021 Iowa Agricultural Educator of the Year. Nominations described him as having an immense impact at the state, national and international levels. Read more »

Presented by Nationwide® and the Iowa FFA Foundation.

Iowa's honorees

Dr. Michael Retallick Dr. Michael Retallick
Agricultural Education and Studies Department Chair
Postsecondary District
Iowa State University
Ames, Iowa
Wyatt Forsyth Wyatt Forsyth
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
NE District
Wapsie Valley High School
Fairbank, Iowa
Elisa Russ-Poggemiller Elisa Russ-Poggemiller
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
NC District
Clear Lake High School
Clear Lake, Iowa
Kylie Nettinga Kylie Nettinga
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
NW District
Western Christian High School
Hull, Iowa
Marcia Kilgard Marcia Kilgard
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
SE District
Iowa Valley High School
Marengo, Iowa
Monty Collins Monty Collins
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
SC District
Pleasantville High School
Pleasantville, Iowa
Brittany Elmquist Brittany Elmquist
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
SW District
Audubon High School
Audubon, Iowa

Ohio

Don Hammersmith

Ohio's Agricultural Educator of the Year

Don Hammersmith

Recognized as a true educator and vital part of the community, Don Hammersmith at Ayersville High School in Ayersville, Ohio, was crowned the 2020-2021 Ohio Agricultural Educator of the Year. Nominations described Hammersmith as a humble, dedicated and selfless teacher who provides opportunities for his students to succeed in whatever path they choose. Read more »

Presented by Nationwide®, the Ohio FFA, Ohio Farm Bureau, Ag Credit and Farm Credit Mid-America.

Ohio's honorees

Don Hammersmith Don Hammersmith
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
Region 1
Ayersville High School
Defiance, Ohio
Mike Hoffman Mike Hoffman
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
Region 2
Wynford High School
Bucyrus, Ohio
Shari Anderson Shari Anderson
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
Region 3
Marysville High School
Marysville, Ohio
Kari Roberts Kari Roberts
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
Region 4
Talawanda-Butler Tech High School
Oxford, Ohio
Andrew DeLong Andrew DeLong
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
Region 5
Chief Logan High School
Logan, Ohio
Ryan Sell Ryan Sell
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
Region 1
Archbold High School
Archbold, Ohio
Ryan Rosselot Ryan Rosselot
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
Region 4
Western Brown High School
Mt. Orab, Ohio
Abbey VanTyne Abbey VanTyne
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
Region 2: Teacher Turn the Key Award
Norwayne High School
Creston, Ohio
Pamela Schultz Pamela Schultz
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
Region 1
Fayette High School
Fayette, Ohio
Mark Hoffman Mark Hoffman
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
Region 2
Hillsdale High School
Jeromesville, Ohio

New York

Elizabeth Foote

New York's Agricultural Educator of the Year

Elizabeth Foote

For her outstanding work as an agricultural teacher, Elizabeth Foote at Greenwich Jr./Sr. High School in Greenwich, New York, was chosen as the 2020-2021 New York Agricultural Educator of the Year. Foote was recognized as a passionate educator with a unique way of connecting with students and getting them involved in agriculture. Read more »

Presented by Nationwide®, the New York FFA and the New York Farm Bureau.

New York's honorees

Patrycja Zbrzezny Patrycja Zbrzezny
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
District 1
John Bowne High School
Flushing, New York
Anne Allen Anne Allen
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
District 2
Sharon Springs Central School
Sharon Springs, New York
Elizabeth Foote Elizabeth Foote
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
District 3
Greenwich Jr./Sr. High School
Greenwich, New York
Renee Johnson Renee Johnson
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
District 4
Oxford Academy High School
Oxford, New York
Mandi Millen Mandi Millen
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
District 5
Cazenovia High School
Cazenovia, New York
Nichole Hirt Nichole Hirt
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
District 6
Indian River High School
Philadelphia, New York
Leann Jordan Leann Jordan
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
District 7
Tully Junior Senior High School
Tully, New York
Mary Coolbaugh Mary Coolbaugh
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
District 8
Marcus Whitman High School
Rushville, New York
Todd Eick Todd Eick
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
District 9
Medina High School
Medina, New York
Patricia Walker Patricia Walker
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
District 10
Randolph Central School
Randolph, New York
Jeff Perry Jeff Perry
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
Collegiate
Cornell University CALS
Ithaca, New York

Pennsylvania

Sherisa Nailor

Pennsylvania's Agricultural Educator of the Year

Sherisa Nailor

For her outstanding work as an agricultural teacher at Big Spring High School in Newville, Pennsylvania, Sherisa Nailor was honored as the 2020-2021 Pennsylvania Agricultural Educator of the Year. Nominations described Nailor as a gifted educator who builds a love for agriculture within her students and provides highly engaging classroom lessons. Read more »

Presented by Nationwide®, the Pennsylvania FFA and the Pennsylvania Farm Bureau.

Pennsylvania's honorees

Katherine Ranck Katherine Ranck
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
Eastern Region
Garden Spot High School
New Holland, Pennsylvania
Thomas Hojnowski Thomas Hojnowski
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
Northern Region
Canton High School
Canton, Pennsylvania
Sherisa Nailor Sherisa Nailor
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
South Central Region
Big Spring High School
Newville, Pennsylvania
Laura Palmer Laura Palmer
Ag Teacher and FFA Advisor
Western Region
Conneaut Area Senior High School
Linesville, Pennsylvania

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