With more than 80,000 members, the Texas FFA is a very large and complex organization that requires many staff members to function. For ten years Gerald Young served as executive director of the Vocational Agriculture Teachers Association of Texas (VATAT) which plays a vital role in Texas FFA’s ability to function year round. Young was recognized for his work on stage Wednesday, alongside many other colleagues.
In addition to being recognized, Young announced his retirement. After ten years of service to VATAT and FFA, Young was full of memories and emotions.
“I’m looking forward to my retirement,” Young said. “I also will miss the day to day hustle of the ag teacher’s association (VATAT) and also working with the foundation and the FFA.”
Young fully devoted himself to the agriculture industry during his time of service and truly valued his job.
“I think the most rewarding part was when a teacher had a problem or an issue and we were able to help them with that issue,” Young said.
When Young began his service in January 2002 he accomplished many goals, and after ten years he was able to reflect on his effectiveness.
“My ultimate goal was to try do as much as I could to improve the association,” Young said. “I think we do a better job of serving our members.”
With a great sense of accomplishment, Young had the chance to witness his impact on Texas FFA and its members at state convention.
“I think our membership is as good as it’s ever been,” Young said. “What’s really impressive is the number of students its grown to.”
As a former FFA member, Young gives credit for his success to his agriculture background.
“My agricultural experience was okay, but it wasn’t as good as a lot of the students’ today,” Young said. “That’s one of the reasons I became an ag teacher, I wanted to make sure that all of my students had what I didn’t have.”
Even though Young is retiring, he and his family dont plan to stop serving the agriculture industry.
“We’ll be involved in agriculture as long as we can breathe,” Young said.