Clare-Gladwin RESD agriculture teacher and FFA advisor Anthony (Tony) Wood is Michigan Farm Bureau’s (MFB) 2023 Educator of the Year. He received his award during MFB’s 104th State Annual Meeting in Grand Rapids on Nov. 28.
Wood is a household name in the Clare-Gladwin area when it comes to supporting youth in agriculture, committing time to his students through summer camps, classwork, and FFA activities.
“I love seeing a student that was once reluctant to speak in front of the class build the confidence to compete in an FFA leadership contest, or a student that has not had the opportunity to raise an animal get involved in a livestock project,” Wood said.
MFB Educator of the Year award winner Tony Wood (center right) joined by (from left) MFB Promotion & Education Chair Jess Erler, AgroLiquid President and CEO Nick Bancroft, and MFB President Carl Bednarski.
Wood lends his time to help his students grow their leadership, employability, and agricultural skills. Just outside of the school, Wood’s students raise a variety of livestock during the school year, giving them unique learning experiences with a level of responsibility.
With the animal projects he also teaches the science and economics behind raising livestock through anatomy, animal nutrition, and agribusiness courses. Outside of the school year, Wood wears many hats, hosting a Career Technical Education Camp for local middle schoolers and taking part in the Clare County Fair where many of his students are exhibitors.
“Tony has a passion for agriculture that he works extremely hard to pass onto students. He often challenges students to look at traditional and non-traditional aspects of agriculture,” said Clare County Farm Bureau board member Sarah Hollon, who nominated Wood for the award.
“He is passionate about his students and their future.”
MFB’s Educator of the Year award recognizes teachers who excel at integrating agricultural concepts into curricula and challenge students to develop critical-thinking skills through the analysis of agricultural issues and information. Wood received a $500 grant to further agriculture education opportunities in his school and community.
Sponsorship for the Educator of the Year Award is provided by AgroLiquid through the Michigan Foundation for Agriculture. A part of the $1,500 sponsorship, the recipient received the $500 grant along with a $1,000 scholarship to the 2023 National Agriculture in the Classroom Conference in Orlando, Florida.
The Michigan Foundation for Agriculture, a 501(c)(3), is governed by Michigan Farm Bureau’s Board of Directors, and positively contributes to the future of Michigan agriculture through leadership and educational programming.