The Missouri Department of Elementary and Secondary Education recently named Keith Dietzschold Agricultural Education director and Missouri FFA Association state advisor, effective July 1, 2021. He takes over for Leon Busdieker who retired June 30. Dietzschold was previously northwest district supervisor and state FFA executive secretary. Dietzschold received a Bachelor of Science degree in animal science from the University of Missouri-Columbia in 1982. After returning home to farm with his father in the family’s row crop and swine operation, Dietzschold returned to MU to complete a Master’s in Education, Agriculture Education emphasis, and graduated in December 1984. A former agricultural education instructor and FFA Advisor, Dietzschold taught in Chillicothe, Cameron and Lathrop before joining DESE in 2011. He is a member of the National Association for Agriculture Educators and Missouri Vocational Agriculture Teachers Association (MVATA). He has also served on numerous committees for the National FFA Organization and MVATA. Dietzschold was honored in 2018 with the Peter Myers Distinguished Service Award, was named Teacher of the Year by the Missouri Vocational Association in 1997 and was an Eddy Award Winner from Missouri Public Education in 1998. He is also a past recipient of the MVATA Distinguished Service Award. Dietzschold and his wife, Linda, reside in Boonville. They have two grown children and one granddaughter. As director of agricultural education and state FFA advisor, Dietzschold will oversee Missouri’s agricultural education program, including the state’s 351 FFA chapters and 25,662 members. The FFA makes a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agricultural education.