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Monday, August 24, 2015

Farm Bill Producer Education Evaluation Shows National Impact

Directors/Administrators involved with the Cooperative Extension partnership with USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) on the recent farm bill producer education project are encouraged to provide survey results as found at to state and local FSA colleagues. The infographic summarizes survey responses from participants engaged in educational programs on new farm/ranch programs during the 10-month period beginning September 1, 2014. Respondents reported nearly doubling their knowledge of new farm/ranch programs after engaging in the face-to-face educational programs. The total estimated revenue protected by survey respondents is reported to be in the billions of dollars. The full reach of the Cooperative Extension educational effort is estimated to be up to five times greater than the numbers reported in the attachment. In addition, since some farm/ranch managers engaged in educational programs were making decisions for five or more agricultural operations, the reach expands even more. The 2nd page of the summary encourages further work with Cooperative Extension as a national system. Key ECOP leadership for this project with funding authorized by the Agriculture Act of 2014 (farm bill) included Jimmy Henning (University of Kentucky), Chris Boerboom (North Dakota State University), James Trapp (Oklahoma State University), and Ron Brown (Association of Southern Region Extension Directors). Craig Wood, eXtension, together with the ECOP National Office, were instrumental in summarizing the data and developing the handout. 

Twitter Town Hall at NEDA 2015Fast-paced and highly engaging are two descriptors of the 30-minute Twitter Town Hall scheduled Wednesday morning at the National Extension Directors and Administrators (NEDA) Meeting October 12-14, 2015 in St. Louis. Darren Katz of kglobal, the firm working with the AHS-ESS-CES Communication and Marketing Committee chaired by Scott Reed (Oregon State University) will lead the effort. Be at NEDA to get a firsthand view of how this social media approach can engage target audiences. Better yet, use your Twitter account to join the process. Highlighted in the Twitter Town Hall will be four of the 151 innovations reported to Ohio State University as part of the ECOP-sponsored Cooperative Extension Innovation Inventory to be unveiled at NEDA 2015. NEDA registration is available at a reduced fee until 9.22.15 at

Nick Place, University of Florida
ECOP Names Representatives for EDEN Strategic Planning – ECOP liaison to the Extension Disaster Education Network (EDEN) Nick Place (University of Florida) announces a strategic planning meeting September 8-10, 2015 in Indianapolis. The purpose is to learn from EDEN’s 20-year history and, more importantly, recommend action for the next five years. Extension Directors/Administrator named by ECOP to participate are Carolyn Williams, 1890 Universities (Prairie View A&M University); Chris Boerboom, North Central (North Dakota State University); Fred Schlutt, Western (University of Alaska); Larry Katz, Northeast (Rutgers University), and Ed Jones, Southern (Virginia Tech). EDEN leadership, a USDA-NIFA liaison, and ECOP Executive Director Jane Schuchardt also will attend. Among goals of the workshop are to assess resources, evaluate Extension’s need and priorities for EDEN, and consider national and international partnerships. 

4-H Congressional Caucus Takes Hold on Capitol Hill – The National 4-H Council reports several members of Congress have asked to join the 4-H Congressional Caucus since its launch in July 2015. See to find information about 4-H Congressional Alumni, 4-H Congressional Caucus members, news about 4-H activities on the Hill, and resources to use when visiting Members of Congress. ECOP endorsed the recommendation from the 4-H National Leadership Committee, Ed Jones (Virginia Tech) and Renee McKee (Purdue University), co-chairs, to re-establish this caucus, which is supported by Cooperative Extension and facilitated by National 4-H Council. Direct questions to Kelly Baird at

ECOP Monday Minute to Return 9.14.15 – This blog is designed as a quick read most Monday mornings primarily targeted for Cooperative Extension Directors/Administrators. It’s primary purpose is to show how ECOP provides national leadership for the benefit of state and local educational programming and to engage the Cooperative Extension Section in actions of system-wide benefit. Comments of any nature, and especially on how to improve this communication, can be directed to ECOP Executive Director Jane Schuchardt at Enjoy these last few days of summer and have a safe and memorable Labor Day weekend.