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Extension Update – March 11, 2016   arrow

On Behalf of Bill Nobles:

Important Tidbits

  • New Staff Orientation is off and running! There is an expectation that new staff take part in the webinars, modules, and homework. If you have any questions contact the committee or your regional director.
  • PLT members that will be on the Forum committee are – Bill Nobles, Ragan Adams, Geniphyr Ponce-Pore (or Greg Felsen), Mark Platten and Marisa Bunning.
  • The next PLT meeting will be on May 31 at 1 pm on Zoom.
  • “Sewing the seeds of economic revival in rural Colorado”. Here’s the link to the R-CAM story, in case you didn’t see it:
  • “Climate Smart Agriculture Conference” will be a one-day event at CSU on Thursday, May 5, 2016. They are working on the agenda now and Lou Swanson reported more information will be sent out soon. This will be a globally recognized event. Mark your calendars.
  • Need help with grants? Contact the Agriculture Business Center at 970-491-0926 – Catherine Douras and Cliff Schulenberg can assist with pre award support for Extension grant proposals.
  • Sponsored Programs Information Network (SPIN) is the online resource that you can sign up for to get information on grants. SPIN provides institutions and regional economic development efforts with current and available sources of much needed funds and sponsorships. SPIN overview on the Sponsored Programs website is:

Clear Creek County Commissioner

It is with heavy heart I share with you that Commissioner Tom Hayden passed away Monday, February 29 at his ranch in Upper Bear Creek. Our thoughts and prayers are with the entire Hayden family as we remember Tom’s life and his contributions to their community. Contact Christine Crouse, Clear Creek County Extension Director, for more information.

Don’t Forget Conflict of Interest (COI) Disclosure Completion

Each of you should have received an email from the Provost’s Office regarding the annual online Conflict of Interest Disclosure. Please be sure to complete your on-line disclosure (state classified employees do not have to complete a COI). If you have questions about the process or have not received the email, contact your regional director, Lori Bates or Judy Barth.

From your Peaks and Plains Regional Meeting planning committee – Mick Livingston, Lacey Mann, Chris Shelley, Mallory Sikes, Michael Fisher, Joan Jordan and Bill Nobles

After some conversations with the planning committee we have come up with what is going to be a great regional meeting! This year we wanted to do something a little different based on many of your comments and input. Here is a little preview of when, where and what you can expect at our meeting:

  • When . . . May 10th – 11th; our tentative schedule has us starting at 10 a.m. on the 10th and ending at 3 p.m. on the 11th. (Remember this is the tentative schedule. We will get more out to you later.)
  • Where . . . Pueblo; Holiday Inn Express located at 4530 Dillon Drive, call (719) 542-8888 or (855) 799-6861 for reservations.
  • What . . . Here is a little of what you can expect: 3 to 4 guest speakers, fun lunches, awards and more.
  • Registration Fee . . . $75.00

Joan will be sending out a registration form within the next week. Please be sure to register early, you won’t want to miss this!!!

Regional Extension Excellence Awards

Just a reminder that we are implementing Regional Excellence awards to be given at each region’s annual meeting this spring. The awards are in 5 different categories. The deadline for the Peaks and Plains Region is March 15th. After talking with the other regional directors, we don’t have many applicants. Please consider nominating someone or yourself for one of these awards.

Peaks and Plains Positions

  • Jane Crayton has accepted the position of 4-H Youth Development and School Enrichment/After School Program in Pueblo County and will start tentatively on April 1.
  • Area Ext Agent, 4-H Youth Dev SE Area Crowley & Otero Counties, Ordway – interviews have been completed.
  • Extension Agent, Area Agronomy/Cropping System, SEA, Lamar – interviews have been completed.
  • Extension Agent-Family and Consumer Science, Pueblo County closes April 5.
  • Peaks and Plains Regional Extension Specialist, Sterling Regional Engagement Center, Sterling, Range Management closes April 14.

Zoom Webinar Add-on – Ruth Willson

The webinar add-on for Zoom has been added to our Zoom license.  The webinar feature allows for one-way training to larger groups and automatically turns cameras and microphones off for participants.  Participants can be promoted to panelists allowing access to the camera and microphone.  There is also the ability to create polls for feedback from participants similar to Adobe Connect.  We have purchased two licenses so two webinars can be hosted simultaneously.  The webinar features a Q&A area as well as a chat feature to receive dialog and feedback from participants.  A training video can be viewed at:

If you need to schedule a webinar or if you have more questions, feel free to contact me at 970-491-6988 or

New Website – Ruth Willson

The new website has been live since October 1, 2015. CJ Mucklow recently shared comments about the website that were raised at the recent from PLT meeting. Any and all feedback is greatly appreciated and we encourage both employees and clientele to use the feedback form that we provide at the bottom left hand side of every webpage. The direct link to provide feedback is: and comes to my email. If completing this form on a mobile device, please use the external version of the feedback form, located here: .  A reply is sent back to let the writer know what has been done.

The new look is a change and we understand that it takes a while to get used to a new design, especially one that is such a big overhaul as we have done.

I’ll try to address some specific comments that hopefully will help clear up confusion:

  • Content is deeper than it used to be. We tried to keep clicks to three. If you find one buried deeper, please let me know as well as the route you took to get there. Remember that the search bar is a great tool.
  • Even directory is confusing.  Darrin Goodman is working on a document to explain how to navigate the online directory. Hopefully people will find this helpful.
  • County click goes to county web site, not to list of everyone in county.  Search the directory using the left hand box, Select Category and select the county. Counties are listed by regions.  All staff information is displayed.
  • Broken links need to be fixed.  Please let me know if you find broken links. We tried to catch everything, but there are always those that we missed.
  • Different from County to County.  Darrin sent a message March 1 describing some issues that are being addressed prior to rolling out to all counties. He has created a form to get on the list – first come, first served. He has already worked with some counties to hand over their site to them; to get in the queue, be sure and fill out the form.
  • DreamWeaver or WordPress.   DreamWeaver will no longer be needed when all the websites move to the new platform.
  • Who was the client group involved in redesign?  Joanne Littlefield, Darrin Goodman and Ruth Willson were the primary design team. Input and suggestions were solicited throughout the process with the Director’s group, during regional meetings and through Extension Update articles that included a link to submit suggestions. Most of those comments and suggestions were implemented. We welcome suggestions.
  • Format should match campus (design).  While many campus units are migrating to WordPress, there is no consistent design across campus. The main CSU site recently changed, and their goal was to have an extremely outward facing look, targeted to prospective students and alumni. In Extension, our team tried to select a design that would meet the needs of the organization and the content we provide to the public.
  • Navigation is awkward.  If you have specific examples of this, please let us know. It does take a while to become comfortable with the change.