Staats to be commencement speaker for AHS graduation

 

Agriculture educator Jack Staats will be the commencement speaker for Alva High School's graduation ceremony Friday, May 17.

Staats grew up in Laverne and was an active member of the Laverne FFA chapter. He received his State FFA Degree and was named Laverne Star Farmer in 1969. The influence of his FFA advisor, Fred Schultz, gave him the inspiration to pursue a career in teaching Agricultural Education. After graduation, he attended both Panhandle State University and Oklahoma State University majoring in agricultural education.

Jack began his teaching career in Freedom, teaching from 1973-1976. After a year of teaching in Buffalo, he began a long teaching career in Alva where he was the agricultural education instructor from 1977 to 2007. Jack's students had numerous accomplishments.

His success as a teacher earned him respect among his teaching peers where Jack was asked to serve as their OVATA President in 1989-1990. In 1991, he was honored as the Agricultural Education Teacher of the Year. He later served all CareerTech teachers as Oklahoma Vocational Association President from 1997-1998.


In 2007, Jack pursued another career change, serving as the program manager and Oklahoma FFA advisor for the Oklahoma Dept. of CareerTech. A position of supervising 362 schools, 442 teachers, and approx. 27,000 students. Jack has overseen an expansion of new ag ed programs across the state, as well as the introduction of online record keeping and curriculum in high school programs, and many more successes of the Oklahoma FFA at the national level. During his time as advisor, Staats has served as the National Association of Supervisors of Agricultural Education President in 2013-2014 and was named Outstanding NASAE National State Supervisor in 2016.

Staats is well respected in the field of agricultural education among his peers and many agricultural leaders in Oklahoma. He serves on the board of directors for the Oklahoma Youth Expo, the Oklahoma FFA Alumni, and the Oklahoma FFA Foundation.

Staats and his wife, Loni, maintain their home in Alva, where they raised three children, all of whom graduated from Alva High School: son Colby and wife Kentra Staats, daughter Chelsea and husband Matt Puckett, and daughter Ciera and husband Chris Stewart. Completing their family are seven grandchildren: Easton and Kyler Staats; Austynn and Jaxson Puckett; and Sage, Tynleigh, and Jentrey Stewart.

 

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