Debra K. Andres, Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS) Agent with the Kansas State University Research and Extension in Geary County, was sworn in as President of the American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences (AAFCS) during the Third General Session of the AAFCS 114th Annual Conference on June 26, 2023, in Baltimore, Maryland.
“My Presidency will be targeted on grassroots growth in three priority areas: cultivating value-added membership connections, implementing the newly adopted Strategic Plan, and promoting professional heath,” Andres shared in her installation message. “Strong roots grow in fertile soil, and I believe that that there is no better place to grow than in the field of Family and Consumer Sciences.”
In addition to serving on the AAFCS Board of Directors (2020 – 2023), Andres held leadership roles in the Kansas Affiliate as President, President-Elect, Secretary, Vice-President of Operations, Vice-President of Member Services and Human Development & Family Studies Chair. Andres has extensive experience in and passion for developing and leading team-centered collaborative efforts. She is a charter member of the AAFCS Leadership Academy planning team and serves as a presenter and coach for each leadership class. Andres has held various education-related positions in academic and community education settings throughout her career and 33 years of AAFCS membership.
Andres earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Vocational Home Economics Education and a Master of Science degree in Family Studies and Human Services from Kansas State University. Additionally, she is a Senior Health Insurance Counselor for Kansas, ServSafe Certified Food Protection Manager, a Strengthening Families Certified Train the Trainer, and a facilitator for the National Dining with Diabetes Program.
In recognition of her work, Andres has received the Kansas AAFCS Outstanding Extension Educator Award (2019), the Kansas State Research and Extension Outstanding Mentor Award (2015), and numerous teaching awards from Kansas State University, Kansas Association Teachers of Family and Consumer Sciences (KATFACS), and Kansas Association for Career and Technical Education (KACTE). She was recognized by the Kansas Affiliate of AAFCS in 1993 with the New Achiever Award and in 2009 with the Leader Award. The national organization identified Andres as an AAFCS National Teacher of the Year Top Ten Awardee in 1996.
American Association of Family & Consumer Sciences (AAFCS – www.aafcs.org) Based in the Washington, D.C., area, AAFCS was founded in 1909 as the American Home Economics Association and is the only association for family and consumer sciences students and professionals across multiple practice settings and content areas. For 114 years, AAFCS has focused its mission on providing leadership and support for professionals whose work assists individuals, families, and communities in making more informed decisions about their well-being, relationships, and resources to achieve optimal quality of life. Through research, experiential education, and technology, AAFCS members help people develop the essential knowledge and skills to lead better lives, be work and career ready, build strong families, and make meaningful contributions to communities. AAFCS members are located nationwide in multiple practice settings, including secondary schools, colleges and universities, government agencies, and business and industry.