Agriculture Instructor and FFA Advisor
Arlington High School
Arlington, South Dakota
Kelly Keller has been the agriculture instructor at Arlington High School for the past eight years, where she teaches a multitude of classes from Agricultural Business to Metal Fabrication, and is the FFA and freshman class advisor. Keller has served as a national FFA judge, served on the South Dakota FFA Foundation Board for seven years and is the past president of the South Dakota Association of Agricultural Educators.
Keller’s teaching style is one of encouragement and variety; she is mindful of engaging her students’ different learning styles and incorporates technology, labs, projects, reports, field trips, guest speakers and community service into her curriculum. Every year, her students engage in projects that serve the community, including landscaping local parks, as well as pulling weeds at Nordland island, a local tourist attraction; serving food at the annual Pro-Pheasant Hunting Banquet; selling lilies to help raise money for cancer research; and participating in annual community clean-up activities. In 2012, students from her Landscape Design class worked with the Arlington Community Museum Board to design, acquire grant funding and install a landscape around the museum building. The design incorporated native grasses and perennials to pay homage to the community and its history. Keller’s FFA chapter has participated in humanitarian efforts as well, working through Paint South Dakota and enlisting the support of the community to paint a house for a handicapped veteran. Community member and vice president of CorTrust Bank, Douglas O’Neil, says, “Mrs. Keller has given much of her time and energy in the past eight years to make Arlington a better place to live.”