CATA Governing Board Update

By Erin Gorter, CATA President

The Governing Board met virtually on April 9 to address topics concerning CATA. Below is a summary of what we discussed. In prefacing the content, please pause and watch the following AT&T Commercial. Go ahead…I will wait. 

Why was this important? Because this is a time for being bendy.

CATA Summer Conference: On April 14, we were informed that Cal Poly is not able to host events during the month of June. The CATA Governing Board meets weekly and is discussing the option of a virtual conference. With this, we will also be discussing items such as virtual conference registration fees, award recognition, etc. In the spirit of bendiness, we thank you for your flexibility as we work through these issues to develop strategies to accommodate everyone.

Communication: The weekly Zoom sessions with Matt Patton, Charles Parker, and Dane White are a great place for you to get current information on important issues. These are Thursdays at 12:30 p.m. in the virtual world. Check  your email for previously disseminated Zoom links and instructions, or click here. We are exploring ways to post recorded sessions in case you are unable to attend. Thank you for adapting to this new delivery mechanism for up to date information and we thank Matt, Charles and Dane for accommodating our needs in this platform — your adaptability is appreciated.

New Peeps: In the spirit of Spring and renewal, we want to introduce you to the new peeps in the office. Cari Brown (Office Assistant), Jennifer Van Conett (Office Assistant) and Maureen Funk (Development Director)…WELCOME! We are excited to have you with us. In addition, since we are on the topic of Peeps, here is some Peep art. Yoga is a great way to calm your mind and practice self-care during these challenging times.

Vision 2030: The Vision 2030 committee met earlier this year to devise a plan to move forward. Little did we all know that a nasty little virus was going to shake up our world and alas, the Vision 2030 committee’s plans were thwarted. They are working to reassess and continue to move forward with advancing the agricultural education profession. We appreciate their flexibility and willingness to continue to serve the membership of our organization.

State Career Development Events: The Governing Board is continuing to stay involved in the process regarding the effective implementation of the curricular code regarding our CDE contests. We recognize that this is an issue that will involve careful thought and action to maintain the integrity of our processes while making sure we meet the needs of all 90,000+ agricultural education students. As we work towards solutions, we appreciate your understanding. 

Regional Efforts: We applaud the work of the regions to help their membership. We see the weekly chats, content sharing opportunities and other Zoom sessions being held. Thank you for stepping up to help your fellow teachers. If there are any ways the Governing Board can help, please let us know. We would be happy to join your sessions and help in any way we can. 

Share with us: If you would like to submit any thoughts or comments for the Governing Board to consider as we continue to meet weekly, please use this link as a place to drop your thoughts, ideas for solutions to problems, creative strategies, etc.  We want to hear from you. 

Since I have your eyes and can write what I want, the next statement is not a reflection of the CATA Governing Board, but just me. We are working in an environment that is new to all of us: socially, economically, emotionally…I can go on. In essence, this is a first for all of us and we are all COVID-19 Greenhands. Please remember to remain malleable, but never crushed. In this time of difficulty, I encourage you to really think about what is precious to you and focus on keeping what is most precious as the focus when making decisions.

For more information about the California Agricultural Teachers’ Association, visit

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