Indiana FFA recognizes Honorary Degree and Distinguished Service Recipients

Five members of the agriculture education community tabbed for exceptional service to Indiana FFA.

WEST LAFAYETTE, Indiana (June 20, 2018) – Indiana FFA recognized six people for their dedication to agriculture education and FFA at the 89th Indiana FFA State Convention on Wednesday. Andrea Schwartz, Archie Sauerheber , Kraig Bowers, and Nancy Bell were recognized as Honorary Degree Recipients, while Roger Carr was recognized with the Distinguished Service Award.

Mrs. Andrea Schwartz has been a long time agricultural educator. From serving as an agriculture teacher and FFA advisor at Cloverdale High School to West Central High School. Since her time as an FFA Advisor, she as gone to serve as an Associate Professor, Agriculture Program Chair and, now, Dean of the School of Advanced Manufacturing, Engineering and Applied Sciences at Ivy Tech Community College. Through her roles, Mrs. Schwartz has played an integral part in helping students transition from Ivy Tech to Purdue University through the Pathway to Purdue Program. Not to mention, she has done numerous things to support and help advance agricultural education in Indiana. Mrs. Schwartz has helped the FFA at the chapter, district, and state levels by providing countless resources for events like the District Four Kickoff and Convention, State Convention Monday CDE’s and Monday Fun Night. Throughout her career, Mrs. Schwartz has exceeded her position to serve and meet the needs of the Indiana FFA A middle school agriculture education teacher at Lebanon High School, Mrs. Stacey Hartley has played a vital role in the development and success of both the middle school and high school FFA chapters. Increasing the pipeline of incoming teachers, Mrs. Hartley has influenced numerous students to pursue a degree in agriculture education. She was named IAAE’s District IV Teacher of the Year and Lebanon’s School Corporation’s Teacher of the Year.

Mr. Sauerheber has served as the agriculture teacher at North Harrison High School for the last 18 years. and has a played a vital role in impacting the success of both the high school and Junior High FFA chapters. He has had sixty of his students receive their Hoosier Degree. Mr. Sauerheber has held the positions of President of the Indiana Association of Agricultural Educators and as Vice President of National Association of Agricultural Educators as well as the position of Regional Secretary of the NAAE. He is also a past member of the Indiana Foundation Board and Indiana FFA Board of Trustees member. He has made a difference in countless students’ lives on both the chapter and state level through his passion and dedication to taking time to always encourage others and work hard.

Mr. Kraig Bowers was an agriculture educator for 11 years. Mr. Bowers is now at Purdue University working to earn his doctorate degree in Agricultural Education. Mr. Bowers dedicated his time to establish a two-year veterinary class to the local schools where, after completing the two years, they will graduate with a Veterinary Assistants License. By starting this program, more students have become interested and invested in new opportunities. Mr. Bowers is also responsible for the creation and development of the National Agricultural Education Discussion Lab. This platform is used by agriculture educators all across the nation to discuss various topics pertaining to their field and classroom curriculum.

Mrs. Nancy Bell has been teaching for 17 years and is currently the Agriculture Educator at North Montgomery High School. Mrs. Bell has not only had a significant impact on her students at school, but also her community, students across the state, as well as communities in different parts of the world. She has a heart for service and the community service projects she has brought to North Montgomery have impacted so many lives. Some of the projects she has headed includes Kids Against Hunger, Riley Children’s Hospital Blankets, Montgomery County Backpack Program and Holiday Shopping for local families in need. She has certainly taught her students the importance of community service and helping others in need

Mr. Roger Carr has served as an agricultural educator and FFA advisor for last 34 years in Illinois, at Whitko High School and Clinton Central High School, where he has always sought to go above and beyond for his students and the Indiana FFA. for past 34 years he has coached 81 State winning Championship CDE’s/LDE’s teams at the State Level of those 81, 25 were State Meats Championship teams and 17 State Champion Livestock Judging teams. Throughout his career, Mr. Carr has been an active member of the Indiana FFA Board of Trustees, created and developed the Agricultural Education CDE, has managed the Stockman Livestock Judging Contest and has served as the superintendent for the Agricultural Business CDE. Mr. Carr has also been an active member of the Indiana Association of Agricultural Educators throughout his entire career and has served as the President. Because of Mr. Carr’s hard work and dedication to agricultural education and FFA he was named an Outstanding Agriculture Teacher for the State of Indiana in 2017, and in 2015 received the Honorary Chapter Degree from the National FFA Organization. Mr. Carr has truly devoted his life to service and developing students. He always searches for ways to benefit those around him and to create opportunities for others to grow.

The Honorary Degree is to recognize teachers who have created high-quality agricultural education programs which inspire and motivate their students to strive for success and individuals who have provided exceptional service on a national level to agriculture, agricultural education, or FFA. The Distinguished Service Award recognize those who have gone above and beyond for agriculture education and FFA on all levels, who have previously been awarded the Honorary Degree.

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