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Monday, April 10, 2017

TEConomy Capacity Funding Report Released

USDA-NIFA commissioned a study by TEConomy Partners, LLC to examine the value of capacity funds that provide resources for Extension and research in agriculture, natural resources and community/family/youth development. The report highlights the findings of this research and can be summarized in three points stating that Capacity funds
    a) result in relationship building and partnerships that lead to change in behaviors for agriculture, communities, families and individuals,
    b) provide the infrastructure and the stable, ongoing source of funding to enable quick response, drawing form the land-grant research base, to address issues important to communicating, families and individuals in every corner of the country, and
    c) are leveraged by state and local funds as well as a wealth of additional financial and human resources that results in a high return on the federal investment.
The detailed study highlights can be found at, and the link to the full report can be found at

Awards Q&A -
    WHAT? 2 Awards! The Award for Diversity is designed to focus national attention on innovative models and techniques that ensure that Extension programs equitably engage all appropriate audiences in an effective manner. The Excellence in Extension Award recognizes Cooperative Extension professionals who excel at Extension programming, make a positive impact on constituents served, and provide visionary leadership for the System.
    WHEN? Submit nominations by May 1
    HOW? Go to:
    WHO? Direct questions to ECOP Program Assistant Sandy Ruble 202.478.6088 or

Fred Schlutt, University of Alaska
Building Bridges For Energy Programming - ECOP Chair Fred Schlutt addressed National Extension Energy Summit attendees on April 4, 2017 in Knoxville, Tennessee. The biennial Summit is intended to enhance the sharing of ideas and programs among Extension educators. Dr. Schlutt spoke about recent discussions with the US Department of Energy (DOE) over how to expand linkages with Cooperative Extension, especially at the state level with Land-grant Universities. He asked meeting participants to work with ECOP to develop a list of national needs and program priorities to be shared in conversations with potential partners. Discussions are planned with members of the Association of Natural Resource Extension Professional (ANREP) National Extension Energy Initiative, many of whom were in attendance at the Summit, to organize the collection of the needs and priorities.

L-R: Judith Barth, JCEP rep. to ECOP-BLC; Jim Richards,
Cornerstone Government Affairs; Doug Steele ECOP-BLC
Chair, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension, and ECOP Executive
Director Rick Klemme. Not pictured, ECOP Chair Fred Schlutt.
Educating and Advocating on Behalf of the System - Nearly 300 extension professionals, administrators and volunteers met last week in Crystal City at the annual Joint Council of Extension Professionals (JCEP) annual Public Issues Leadership Development (PILD) conference. ECOP Chair Fred Schlutt presented an overview of Cooperative Extension including an update on the One-ask Proposal and an overview of the TEConomy capacity funding report. ECOP-Budget & Legislative Committee (BLC) Chair Doug Steele led an information session, National Leadership: Partnerships and Advocacy in Action, for Directors and Administrators. The conference culminated with Hill visits on Wednesday morning.

AFRI Foundational: Critical Agricultural Research and Extension - AFRI-CARE is designed to support research and Extension efforts that quickly yield solutions for critical programs that impede the efficient production of agriculturally-important plants and animals that can be rapidly implemented by producers. The application deadline will be summer-fall of 2017. Roughly $3 million will be available to fund proposals with an estimated capacity of $300,000. A webinar will be held on May 2 at 1:00 E.T. The webinar address is Olivia Kwong or 202-720-7536 is the webinar contact person.