August CATA Executive Committee Meeting Summary

By Matt Patton, CATA Executive Director

The California Agricultural Teachers’ Association (CATA) Executive Committee met on September 12, 2022. Below is a summary of the items discussed during the meeting. 

Membership Total 

CATA membership for the 2021-22 fiscal year was 978, which is a historic high for the organization. 

2021/22 Budget Review 

The Executive Committee did a final review of the 2021/22 CATA Budget. The budget was finalized after all expenses and receipts were settled from the CATA Summer Conference. CATA finished the fiscal year in the black and put money into reserves. It was noted that CATA is in good fiscal standing with enough funds in reserves to operate for several years if needed. 

Highlights from the 2022 Summer Conference Survey

Nearly 300 participants completed the 2022 CATA Conference Survey. Eight-eight percent of respondents rated the conference ‘Very Good’ or ‘Excellent.’ Conference attendance was at an all-time high for an in-person conference. Survey respondents indicated that changes to the schedule, specifically moving the Hall of Fame to the first session and dividing the New Teacher Introductions over multiple sessions, were welcome improvements.  

The Executive Committee expressed the need for teachers to report and supply information on retiring teachers, so people get recognition for their service. However, the committee would also like to note that not all retiring teachers want to be recognized, and some explicitly request that their names not be publicized as retirees.

Recommendations 

It was recommended to the CATA Executive Director by the Executive Committee that legal representation be retained on behalf of the organization. It was noted that a firm representing the organization was a prudent strategic move due to the size and scope of the organization.

Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats (SWOT) Assessment 

The status of the SWOT Assessment was outlined during the meeting. Dr. Williams, Dr. Colbertson, and graduate students are entering and qualifying the data collected at the CATA Conference this summer. Once the data has been entered and filtered, strands of like themes will be identified and grouped. This data entry and sorting is a long and arduous process, and CATA is extremely grateful for the time and resources Fresno State has dedicated to the assessment. The hope is to review the results from the analysis at the CATA Winter Governing Board Meeting in January. Look for another update once those results are finalized.

Keynote Speaker Recommendations 

Traditionally, personal references have resulted in the best speakers for CATA Summer Conference. Have you witnessed a charismatic speaker with an inspirational message? The CATA Executive Committee is soliciting speakers for next year’s CATA Summer Conference. CATA typically budgets $10,000 total for speakers at the conference.

As a point of reference, Jocko Willink commands $75,000 per speaking engagement, and Mike Rowe’s fee starts at $150,000 for events. Please forward any potential speakers with contact information to mpatton@calagteachers.org.

Employee Evaluation 

The meeting culminated with the CATA’s Executive Directors annual evaluation.  

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