Nominate Local Teachers for California’s Top Agricultural Educator Award

Nationwide’s Golden Owl Award® recognizes extraordinary agricultural teachers in nine states and supplies funding to advance their programs.

Agricultural educators serve a critical role in their Golden Owl Award Nominationscommunities, devoting countless hours to prepare students for successful careers and help them pursue their passions. To honor their contributions and support them with additional resources, Nationwide, California Farm Bureau Federation and the California FFA are accepting nominations for California’s leading agricultural teachers for a chance to be named as the 2022-2023 Ag Educator of the Year.

Nationwide and its state partners recently recognized 51 outstanding agricultural teachers as 2021-2022 Golden Owl Award® finalists and then honored seven grand prize winners as their state’s Ag Educator of the Year. Every finalist received $500 in funding to help future educational efforts and the grand prize winners received $3,000 and the coveted Golden Owl Award trophy.

As the number one insurer of farms and ranches in the U.S.1, Nationwide inaugurated the Golden Owl Award in 2018 by recognizing the contributions of Iowa and Ohio agricultural teachers. As a result of the positive response from the communities in which Golden Owl Award nominees make a difference, the Golden Owl Award has since expanded to recognize outstanding educators across seven states: California, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, New York, Ohio and Pennsylvania. Now in 2022-2023, the award is expanding again to include Nebraska and South Dakota.

Nominate any California agriculture educator for the 2022-2023 Golden Owl Award from September 1, 2022 – January 23, 2023.

“The Golden Owl Award seeks to thank agricultural teachers for the extraordinary care they bring to their work as they go above and beyond in educating America’s youth and future leaders,” said Brad Liggett, Nationwide’s president of Agribusiness. “We encourage students, parents, fellow teachers and others to nominate their favorite agricultural teachers to acknowledge their hard work.”

Following the nomination period, closing on January 23, 2023, a selection committee will evaluate nominations and select 6 finalists in California, who will receive an individualized plaque and $500. During the 2023 State FFA Leadership Conference, March 16-19 in Ontario, Calif., one finalist will then be chosen as the grand prize winner, earning the 2022-2023 Ag Educator of the Year title for California and receiving the coveted Golden Owl Award trophy and $3,000 to help fund future educational efforts.

Nationwide supports the future of the ag community through meaningful sponsorships of national and local organizations. In conjunction with the Golden Owl Award, Nationwide is donating $5,000 to each participating state’s FFA, including the California FFA, to further support the personal and professional growth of students, teachers and advisors alike.  

The Golden Owl Award is the result of partnerships between Nationwide, the California FFA, California Farm Bureau, Illinois FFA, Illinois Association of Vocational Agriculture Teachers, Farm Credit Illinois, Indiana FFA, Farm Credit Mid-America, the Iowa FFA Foundation, New York FFA, New York Farm Bureau, Ohio FFA, Ohio Farm Bureau, AgCredit, Pennsylvania FFA, Pennsylvania Farm Bureau, Compeer Financial, Nebraska FFA Foundation and Nebraska Agricultural Educators Associate. 

To nominate a California teacher, visit Golden Owl Application (
Nominations close on January 23, 2023.


 1 Source: A.M. Best Market Share Report 2021


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Agricultural education strives to maintain its status on the cutting-edge of rigorous classroom instruction, relevant skill acquisition and premier leadership development. Check out the expansive and evolving catalog of resources to generate new ideas, enhance curriculum delivery skills or identify new ways to engage in FFA and SAE activities.


Beginning in the early 20th century in California, agricultural education has a long tradition of preparing students for rigorous, satisfying careers both within and outside of the industry. As a school-based learning program, agricultural education operates as a unit within the California Department of Education and is written into the state’s legislative education code.


Rich in history with an eye toward the future, California’s school-based agricultural education program seeks to prepare all students for satisfying careers in and outside of the agriculture industry. The multi-faceted approach to growing the whole person includes a focus on character and interpersonal skill development, technical acumen and critical thinking capabilities.



From personal growth to career skill enhancement, the focus of California’s agricultural education events is always on the experiential development of the student. With activities ranging from local to national, the statewide organization offers a number of premier events each year that are suited to best meet the interests of an ever-diversifying student population.


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Support Agricultural Leadership, Growth and Career Education

The mission of the California FFA Foundation is to promote, aid, and assist, financially or otherwise, California FFA to ensure the success of Agricultural Education by preparing tomorrow's agricultural leaders, today.




California FFA Foundation’s goal is to provide individuals, businesses, foundations, and others the opportunity to invest in the premier secondary Agricultural Education leadership development program in California: FFA. The Foundation provides award recognition for student projects, competitive team events, leadership development events, as well as leadership training conferences.