Gerald D. Young Agricultural Sciences Center Receives 2021-22 Caudill Award

(Katy, Texas) - VLK Architects is proud to announce the design for Katy Independent School District, Gerald D. Young Agricultural Sciences Center, received the 2021-22 Caudill Award. This award is the highest honor for the TASA | TASB Exhibit of School Architecture (EoSA) competition.

A jury member noted that the design of the Gerald D. Young Agricultural Science Center stood out primarily owing to its capacity to “serve the entire K-12 population of the district, which is more than 87,000 students.” The facility’s design was especially notable because it incorporates significant historical elements of the agricultural industry. The structure is also used for various activities, including instruction, rodeo, and community events. (

Finalists are selected by a 12-member jury consisting of four members of the school board, four administrators, and four representatives of the Association for Learning Environments (A4LE). Each project is judged in the following categories: community, planning, transformation, design, value, and innovation. The Caudill Award winners were selected among 22 projects receiving Stars of Distinction.

“Katy ISD is very proud and thankful to be the recipient of the Caudill Award. The Agricultural Facilities Center is an amazing facility for our students and community,” said Lisa Kassman, Executive Planner for Facilities, Planning, and Construction of Katy ISD.

With its 8,250 square feet of space, the Gerald D. Young Agricultural Science Center can accommodate student exhibitions, expanded parking, and future high school space needs. Additionally, it provides hands-on, project-based learning opportunities for students throughout all grade levels that put theory into practice in the areas of environmental science and biology. Facilities include a multipurpose outdoor covered arena, a show arena, an enclosed pavilion for housing temporary farm animals, and a student project center.

“The facility design was truly a community effort that began in 2013, with the formation of a design committee made up of community members, business leaders, rodeo, FFA members, students, teachers, administrators, as well as family members of the individuals whom the facilities were named after,” said Todd J. Lien, AIA, Managing Partner of VLK Architects. “The resulting buildings and grounds reflect the strong history of agricultural science in the area and in Katy ISD.”

Texas architect William Wayne Caudill (1914-1983) is the namesake for the award. TASA and TASB facilitate Caudill Award at the EoSA competition. Each project can receive up to six Stars of Distinction to qualify for the Caudill Award. Stars of Distinction are awarded based on the project’s design, value, sustainability, community, planning, and school transformation.

Projects which received Caudill Awards will be honored at the annual 2022 TASA Midwinter Conference on January 30 – February 2, 2022.

About VLK Architects: With offices throughout Texas, VLK Architects provides architecture, planning, and interior design services to automotive, K-12, higher education, corporate, commercial, and institutional clients throughout Texas. For more information, please visit our website: or contact [email protected].
About the Texas Association of School Administrators (TASA): TASA is the professional association for Texas school superintendents and other administrators. The organization’s mission, which focuses on professional learning, advocacy, and member engagement, is to promote, provide and develop leaders who create and sustain student-centered schools and develop future-ready students.
About the Texas Association of School Boards (TASB): TASB is an association established in 1949 to serve local public school boards. School board members are the largest group of publicly elected officials. The districts serve approximately 5.3 million students. TASB’s mission is to promote educational excellence for Texas schoolchildren through advocacy, visionary leadership, and high-quality services to school districts.
About the Exhibit of School Architecture: The Exhibit of School Architecture awards are given at the discretion of a 12-member jury (four school board members, four administrators, two representatives from the Texas Society of Architects, and two representatives from the Association for Learning Environments (A4LE).