Nationwide picks 5 state Ag Educators of the Year


Insurance company Nationwide is honoring five agriculture teachers with the Golden Owl Award, recognizing them as their state’s 2019-20 Ag Educator of the Year.

Nationwide will award each winner $3,000 in funding to help bring new opportunities to their programs and students2. The insurer recently recognized the exceptional efforts of 31 agricultural teachers across five states as finalists for the 2019-20 Golden Owl Award.

The 2019-20 Ag Educators of the Year are:

  • California: Rosemary Cummings — Nipomo High School, Nipomo, California
  • Illinois: Ed Curry (posthumous) — River Ridge High School, Hanover, Illinois
  • Iowa: Elsa Schmidt — Mid-Prairie High School, Wellman, Iowa
  • Ohio: Christi Bachman — Bloom Carroll High School, Carroll, Ohio
  • Pennsylvania: Mark Anderson — Elizabethtown High School, Elizabethtown, Pennsylvania

“As a company with deep roots in the agriculture community, Nationwide knows the critical role that agricultural teachers play in preparing the next generation of industry leaders,” said Brad Liggett, president of Agribusiness at Nationwide. “We’ve received thousands of nominations over the years highlighting the impacts teachers make in their classrooms and communities. Those touching stories have inspired us to honor even more well-deserving teachers.”

Nationwide launched the Golden Owl Award during 2018-2019 by recognizing the contributions of 17 Iowa and Ohio agricultural teachers. Nationwide expanded the 2019-2020 Golden Owl Award to recognize 31 outstanding educators across five states: California, Illinois, Iowa, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. Now in 2020-2021, the award is expanding again to include Indiana and New York.

Nominations for the 2020-2021 Golden Owl Award are now underway and will close on December 31, 2020. Following the nomination period, a selection committee will determine finalists for each state, who will receive an individualized plaque and $500 to support their agriculture programs2. A finalist in each state will then be chosen as that state’s Golden Owl Award winner. 

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