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Okawville teacher elected president of Illinois Ag Teachers


Joshua Berg, Okawville Junior-Senior High School agriculture teacher and FFA Advisor, was elected President of the Illinois Association of Vocational Agriculture Teachers (IAVAT) at the association’s annual conference last week. Berg joined more than 400 agricultural educators, guests, exhibitors, and presenters attending the conference held in Lisle, Illinois. Berg will serve as President of the organization for the next year. His duties will include directing the work of the IAVAT organization throughout the state. He will also hold a seat on the Board of Directors and Administrative Council for agricultural education in Illinois.

The IAVAT, founded in 1922, held a variety of activities during the three-day event. The conference was designed to meet the needs of secondary and post-secondary agriculture educators. The total program included general sessions, section/district meetings, business meetings, professional development sessions, and special award recognition sessions. Berg attended several workshops to improve his knowledge of a variety of topics. These workshops included The Science Behind Food and Flavor, Utilizing Your Scantron Machine and JudgingCard.com, and Mindy’s Think Tank: New Eyes & Old Ears Welcome.

Berg served as IAVAT Vice President last year. In that position, he coordinated committee work among teachers around the state, held a position on the IAVAT Board of Directors, and served on the Administrative Council. Berg has previously served as District 5 IAVAT Chairman, Section 22 IAVAT Chairman, Section 22 Treasurer, Curriculum Committee representative, and Recognition Committee representative. He will continue to serve on the Diversity & Inclusion Taskforce. The IAVAT is a professional organization for instructors in agriculture and is affiliated with the National Association of Agriculture Educators (NAAE), the Illinois Association of Community College Agriculture Instructors (IACCAI), and the Association for Career and Technical Education (ACTE). IAVAT boasted a membership of 567 members last year as the number of agricultural educators in Illinois continues to grow.

2023-2024 IAVAT Board of Directors (front): Secretary-Treasurer Dr. Jay Solomonson, Illinois State University; Vice President Kirsten Wyatt, Paxton-Buckley-Loda; President Joshua Berg, Okawville; Past President Donna Page, Rochelle; IACCAI Representative Doug Robb, Wabash Valley College; (back): District 1 Director Kindra Callahan, Kewanee; District 5 Director Cherie Rogier, Mt. Vernon; District 2 Director Riley Hintzsche, Streator; District 4 Director Kirsten Wyatt, Paxton-Buckley-Loda; and District 3 Director Maggie McCalla, Staunton.

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