INDIANAPOLIS — The National FFA Organization board of directors and National FFA Foundation board of trustees approved a new consolidated management structure that unifies both organizations’ executive management through a joint governance committee of the two boards, a common chief executive officer and a common chief financial officer.

The plan, approved unanimously by both boards and the 2013-2014 National FFA officer team, includes implementation of an integrated management team to increase collaboration and communication across both boards.

“We believe these steps will strengthen FFA and agricultural education,” said National FFA adviser Steve Brown, who serves as chairman of the National FFA Organization’s board. “By consolidating our executive and financial management, we expect better resource alignment, greater performance accountability, improved financial stability and transparency and speedy resolution of conflicts of interest.”

The joint governance committee will consist of members of both boards and work with the common CEO.

The boards approved immediate appointment of W. Dwight Armstrong as the common CEO. Armstrong currently serves as CEO for the National FFA Organization and is former chairman of the National FFA Foundation Sponsors’ Board, which supports fundraising campaigns for the foundation.

The common CFO will be responsible for each organization’s financial standing and performance and will present information and recommendations directly to the boards.

Coordinated financial reporting will enhance transparency and help each board execute its fiduciary responsibilities. The committee will work with Armstrong to fill the CFO position.

“We received considerable input from the field regarding the proposed actions, and we found broad and deep support,” said Russ Green, chairman of the National FFA Foundation board of trustees and national accounts sales manager for AGCO Corp.

“I believe these actions will help FFA be more efficient and better prepared to address opportunities and issues under the leadership of a common executive responsible to both boards for achieving results and implementing strategy.”

The National FFA Organization provides leadership, personal growth and career success training through agricultural education to more than 579,600 student members in grades seven through 12 who belong to one of 7,500-plus local FFA chapters throughout the U.S., Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. The National FFA Foundation is the fundraising arm of the National FFA Organization.