Follow by Email

Monday, March 31, 2014

ECOP Monday Minute 3.24.14 - Health Task Force Report

NEDA to Discuss Health Task Force Recommendations – ECOP National Task Force on Health, Michelle Rodgers, chair, University of Delaware, reminds colleagues that the United States continues to spend more on health care than any nation in the world but has among the worst health outcomes of any developed nation. The task force believes that our existing Cooperative Extension System can play an important role in increasing health in America. Please review the executive summary at in preparation for discussion at the National Extension Directors and Administrators Meeting this week in Sacramento.  

Extension Award Nominations Due 5.30.14 – Take time now to submit nominations for the Excellence in Extension and Diversity Awards. ECOP Program Subcommittee Chair, Jon Boren, New Mexico State University, and ECOP Personnel Subcommittee Co-Chairs, James Trapp, Oklahoma State University, and Chuck Hibberd, University of Nebraska, together with Sandy Ruble in the ECOP National Office, have developed an electronic submission, review, and notification process. To prepare a nomination for submission, use the handy pdf version which includes criteria found Then submit the nomination at

Knapp Lecture Nominations Due 5.2.14 -- Each year the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) joins with the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU) to sponsor a lecture presented at the APLU annual meeting. The lecture honors one of the three most important historical figures of the Land-grant University System, William Henry Hatch for research, Seaman A. Knapp for Extension, and Justin Smith Morrill for whom the Morrill Act which created the Land-grant University system is named.  Since 2014 marks the 100th anniversary of the Smith-Lever Act passage, the Knapp Lecture will be delivered this year at the APLU annual meeting in Orlando, FL, November 2-4. Nominations should include the name of the nominee, title, address, telephone number, and e-mail address and topic that could be discussed. Send to Kimberly Whittet at by 5.2.14.

Celebrate Centennial Via Social Media --There are many ways to connect with the Cooperative Extension Centennial through social media.  Please encourage faculty, staff, students, and volunteers to engage in the process and share their stories. The 100 Days of Tweets leading up to the Centennial Convocation is underway. Twitter followers can use #Ext100Years on all Cooperative Extension related posts. You can find Cooperative Extension at the following addresses: Centennial Facebook page:; Centennial Twitter feed:; Centennial Pinterest page:, and YouTube channel:

Honoring Borlaug’s 100th – Cathann Kress, Iowa State University, encourages celebration of the 100th anniversary of the birth of Dr. Norman E. Borlaug, famous agricultural scientist and humanitarian and founder of the World Food Prize. On 3.25.14, the State of Iowa will install a bronze statue of Borlaug, an Iowa native, as part of the prestigious National Statuary Hall Collection in Washington, DC. The statue unveiling ceremony at the U.S. Capitol will be webcast live at 11 a.m. ET at Further information is at In addition, the Secretary of Agriculture will host a Borlaug symposium 2:30 – 5:00 p.m. ET on 3.25.14. Watch the symposium live at

FY 2015 Federal Budget Request (by Paula Geiger, USDA-NIFA Budget Officer) -- The President submitted the FY 2015 Budget request to Congress on March 4, 2014. The Budget includes discretionary funding of $1.34 billion, which is $58.4 million above the FY 2014 appropriations level.  Highlights of the NIFA budget include:
·       An increase of $9 million above 2014 for a total of $325 million for the Agriculture and Food Research Initiative;
·       Continued support for capacity funding, minority-serving, and other programs;
·       A new investment creating public-private partnership of Innovation Institutes focused on emerging challenges to agriculture;
·       A new program to engage Veterans in the agricultural sector;
·       A new program to support training and outreach activities in food safety to assist small producers, processors, and vendors; and
·       An Opportunity, Growth and Security Initiative to provide investments in competitive research including an additional $60 million for AFRI and an additional $20 million for competitive grants under Hatch Act ($15 million) and Evans-Allen ($5 million).
Additional details can be found in the NIFA Budget Brochure and the NIFA Congressional Budget Justifications at: The NIFA Congressional Budget Justifications (Explanatory Notes) can be found here: Other useful links are as follows:

Health and Wellness Summit 4.7.14 – The National Coalition of Food and Agriculture Research, of which Cooperative Extension/ECOP is a member, announces a half-day summit Monday morning 4.7.14 at the Capitol Visitor’s Center in Washington, DC. To register for the summit, called Cultivating a Healthy Future: Agriculture’s Role in Improving Health and Wellness, go to  Linda Kirk Fox, University of Georgia, Board on Human Sciences liaison to ECOP, is on the planning committee. The purpose of the summit is to bring together leaders from the health care and agriculture communities to offer an innovative look at how U.S. food systems impact human health. Agency and industry leaders will exhibit case studies that highlight the links between agriculture and human health and how agriculture research programs can support healthy outcomes in people, plants and animals. 

Agritourism Liability Webinar 3.26.14 – Larry Katz, New Jersey (Rutgers) Extension Director, encourages participation in the webinar Managing Agritourism Liability on March 26, 2014 (1:00pm ET). This webinar, the second in a series, is part of a multi-state project funded by the Northeast Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (NESARE) Program designed to support agricultural educators working in the area of agritourism development.  Liability risks associated with agritourism can never be fully eliminated, but they can be managed. This webinar provides an overview of the types of visitors you may receive on your farm, and your legal obligations for their safety. Proactive measures to protect your personal and business assets from legal exposure will be discussed. Connect to the webinar at