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Agriculture Today

Daniel Kempen joins Pieniazek on VATAT board

Daniel Kempen joins Pieniazek on VATAT board
Daniel Kempen and Ray Pieniazek

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August 21, 2013
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CORPUS CHRISTI -- The Vocational Agriculture Teachers Association of Texas (VATAT) elected its new board of directors and leadership during the VATAT Professional Development Conference for Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources Cluster held July 29 through Aug. 2 in Corpus Christi.

Among those elected were Daniel Kempen and Ray Pieniazek, both agricultural science teachers at East Central High School.

Kempen was elected to serve on the board of directors for a three-year term. An animal science major at Texas A&M University, Kempen said one of the most important roles of being a VATAT board member is to increase the public’s knowledge of agricultural science.

Throughout his 27-year teaching career, Kempen has trained numerous Leadership Development Event teams and Career Development Event teams, including a state champion FFA Quiz Team.

Pieniazek was elected to serve as the board’s secretary/treasurer for the 2013-14 school year. Pieniazek received a bachelor’s and master’s degree in agricultural education from Texas A&M University.

Throughout his 25-year teaching career, Pieniazek has trained 11 state champion Career Development Event (CDE) teams and three national champion CDE teams, as well as served on the state CDE committee for more than 15 years.

In addition to his positions with VATAT and FFA, Pieniazek is also a member of the Bexar County Farm Bureau and a Bexar County 4-H leader.

As secretary/treasurer, Pieniazek plans to work with fellow VATAT officers and board members to increase member benefits and opportunities and increase communication between the state association office and the members.

The VATAT board of directors is responsible for conducting business concerning the Association and Texas agricultural science teachers. Texas is divided into 10 areas; board members represent agricultural science teachers in their respective areas. The VATAT board of directors is comprised of 65 board members from across the state.

Also attending from East Central were Charlie Dylla and Lorie Kempen. Lorie Kempen presented two workshops -- “Rule Updates on Leadership Development Event” and “Selecting and Raising Beef Cattle Projects.”

Agricultural science teachers spent the week attending professional development workshops, training classes, and general sessions with motivational speakers to enhance their current teaching methods and keep up with the latest curriculum developments in agricultural education and technology. They also earn Continuing Professional Education hours toward their teaching certificate.

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