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Extension Update – December 16, 2016   arrow

On behalf of Bill Nobles:

I would like to wish everyone Happy Holidays! and don’t forget all of our wish lists:

  • Take some time for family and friends
  • Don’t forget your December timesheets
  • Reporting completed by 10 p.m. on December 31st
  • Reflect on this year’s accomplishments
  • Focus on a new Plan of Work or new programs for next year
  • Check your budgets twice for next year
  • Wish for more snow unless you are CJ

 I want to “Thank You All for the Great Work!” you have done this past year.

Job Descriptions

With the new performance appraisal documents, it will be important to review and update the job description to ensure it is up to date. The link is now fixed:

CAD Meeting

The County and Area Director’s Meeting will be held in Frisco January 23-25. Presentations will focus on Extension’s Role in Emergency Management, New Performance Appraisal System Review, Discussion with College of Liberal Arts, FLSA, Use of Non-Appropriated Accounts, Admin Update, and Strategic Planning by Region to name a few.

A tour of the workings of the Eisenhower Tunnel is in the works but not confirmed.  This meeting is designed for County/Area Directors but is open to anyone who has interest in attending.  Go to the website for hotel information, agenda and to register.

Strategic planning from the Ground-Up!

We would like to move forward with “Strategic Planning” within our communities, counties, areas, PRU’s, campus, regions and state. There is a mutual feeling within administration and DAC that this is a good time to look at Extension’s mission and vision as well as look at developing a strategic action plan within Extension. The intent is to look at a two-year plan that has two major goals of forming priorities and giving us a concise format for communicating these priorities.

The intent of the plan is to be a working document and useful. Using a one-page format (roadmap planning sheet) that has been developed, Ashley Stokes wants feedback on structure and process, priorities, goals, partners, and action items. One method discussed during the recent DAC meeting is to follow the structure of Extension for our strategic planning—bottom up. The thought is to perhaps have each person fill out a road map planning sheet and share at the county level, regional meetings, through PRUs, state office, and work its way up. The layout of the planning sheet is simple, focuses on core concepts and needs, and gives us the flexibility and nimbleness we need to stay up to date and easily revise the plan. There will be more information about the strategic planning in the near future.

Professional Development Task Force

Judy Barth shared some of the Annual Forum evaluation results with DAC. From our conversation at the DAC meeting, we will be moving forward to develop an overarching Task Force looking at Extension professional development. This committee will not take the place of the existing committees or task forces such as the mentoring, new staff orientation, etc., but will look more broadly at professional development including Annual forum and County/Area Director Meetings. Their mission will be to determine professional development needs that provide value and education to the agent and what format best meets those needs.  We are looking for two or three agents from each region. If you are interested in serving on this task force please contact your Regional Director and let them know. More information to follow in the near future.

Preliminary/possible opportunity for creating an Engagement Faculty position for state Extension agents

There is a possibility and opportunity for creating a non-tenure track Engagement Faculty position at CSU. Lou wants to know if agents in the field are interested in having a discussion about this possible change. There are some other states that have adopted this model (faculty status but without tenure). Lou wants to initiate this from the bottom up and through faculty council. In 2017 we will be having conversations and developing a document about the possible positive and negative outcomes of this proposal. A committee has been setup to consider this proposal. If you have suggestions or concerns about this idea, please be sure to let Dennis Kaan, Bill Nobles, Jean Glowacki, Mark Platten or Marisa Bunning know. There is more information available in the December DAC minutes which should be posted soon.

Family Leadership Training Institute Grants – Joanne Littlefield

The Colorado Health Foundation recently approved a two-year grant for $500,000, to Extension for continued growth of the Family Leadership Training Institute (FLTI) of Colorado. The official transfer of the program from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment to CSU Extension was July 1, 2016. Family engagement and promoting civic leadership are at the heart of the work being done in Colorado through the institute.

Kyle Christensen, a former FLTI facilitator in Larimer County and statewide trainer, is the program coordinator, based on the CSU campus.

FLTI started in 2009 with the goal of giving family leaders the civic skills and knowledge to partner with agencies, start grassroots initiatives, and work with elected officials to assure the family voice is embedded at all levels of policy and program design, delivery, and evaluation. These civic skills, FLTI believes, ultimately lead to healthier, happier families and communities.

From the initial three sites, FLTI continues to grow with a possible 16 local sites in 2016 and more than 800 family leaders taking action on important family, health and community initiatives.  Learn more at:

Famous Idaho Potato Bowl – Joanne Littlefield

The CSU football team will take on Idaho in the Famous Idaho Potato Bowl in their fourth consecutive bowl appearance. Kickoff is set for 5 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 22; ESPN will provide coverage. Tickets are available online, and there is a faculty/staff discount.

Extension Policies – Lori Bates

Attached are two new policies that were reviewed and approved at the DAC meeting on December 9. The policies are CSU Extension Compensatory Time Off and CSU Extension Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) Position Statement. These policies will be added and may be referenced under Staff Resources on our website soon.

FLSA Discussion/Update

Compensatory time off policy – FLSA changes are on hold due to a federal injunction. The changes proposed to be implemented December 1, 2016 will likely be modified. The attached policy is still relevant because we currently have non-exempt employees in the system.

Peaks and Plains Positions and Announcements:

  • We are in the process of developing a new Small Acreage Management Specialist position with NRCS. They will be joining John Rizza and Jennifer Cook as a team. They will be located in Cañon City, CO at the NRCS office. The position will focus on small acreage management within forestry, irrigation, pasture and weed management. The objective is to get someone placed after the first of the year.
  • Congratulations to Laura Krause for accepting the Pueblo County Extension Agent-Family and Consumer Science position. She started December 1, 2016.
  • Congratulations to Jeramy McNeely for accepting the position as Southeast Area Extension Agent Agriculture/Natural Resources & 4-H Youth Development in Kiowa County, Eads, CO. Jeramy’s start date is January 3, 2017.
  • Congratulations to Kaye Kasza for her retirement announcement. Kaye’s last day is scheduled for May 1, 2017.
  • The Golden Plains Area (GPA) Area Extension Agent, Agronomy/ Weed Science in Sedgwick County, Julesburg, CO position is under review.