Step III promotions approved by MSU, letters of intent for 2012-13 review due July 1

The Michigan State University Provost’s Office has approved promotions of five Extension academic staff members to Step III status. Step III is awarded to Extension academic staff members who have demonstrated excellence and scholarly achievement in their work as Extension professionals over a sustained period. Those who are awarded Step III are promoted to “senior” status and their titles are changed by addition of the senior modifier to the title of educator, program leader or specialist. Please join us in congratulating these outstanding senior Extension educators and specialists:

Lisa Bottomley, Children and Youth Institute
Lisa has built a solid reputation as a mentoring expert not only within Michigan but also across the nation, bringing distinction to MSU Extension. Through her work, she networks with scholars and practitioners throughout the country. Major funders such as the Annie E. Casey Foundation have recognized her work, a testament to the quality of her scholarship.

Deb Barrett, Children and Youth Institute
Deb provides excellent leadership in a diverse county. She demonstrated impact through parent evaluations during the We Can Ride Club program. Program assessments indicated systemic change within the New Buffalo School District leading to healthier food choices and activities for students. This program is an excellent example of success and impacts through collaboration. Deb has facilitated significant changes in the overall Berrien County 4-H program, leading to increases in volunteerism and better club accountability and management. Deb implemented new worm farming entrepreneurship curricula, leading to successful worm growing and sales by the clubs.

Martin Nagelkirk, Agriculture and Agribusiness Institute
Martin is the state’s lead person in MSU Extension for the wheat industry. He uses a wide variety of educational methods while evaluating his efforts and showing impact in significant ways through practice changes and economic increases for the industries he serves. His educational efforts include field research plots, classroom education, demonstrations, newsletters, articles, electronic mailing lists and one-on-one contacts. A tremendous facilitator, Martin works behind the scenes in programs such as the wheat referendum to accomplish many tasks in his Extension role. He works to share his published research results in plant pathology journals with the industry in both written and electronic media. His abilities to maintain funding for his wheat field plots and other activities in the Thumb Ag Research and Education (TARE) project are a result of sustained funding from agribusiness and the wheat industry, which see his work as critical.

Dennis Pennington, Agriculture and Agribusiness Institute
Dennis has become a recognized leader in the bioenergy field, establishing excellent connections within Michigan, the North Central region and nationally. Dennis shows clear evidence for excellence in scholarship including the development of bulletins, fact sheets, education programs and Web pages. Dennis is and will continue to be a major factor in MSUE’s ability to serve the growing bioenergy industry, developing research programs and educational materials to help farmers decide to grow and market bioenergy crops and building capacity through training programs for Extension educators to help develop this growing sector.

William Shane, Agriculture and Agribusiness Institute
William is an outstanding researcher in peach breeding. He has contributed to fruit Integrated Pest Management areas with the development of the Enviroweather system while staying in tune with his peers via professional meetings and conferences. William’s research program demonstrates commitment to the area and expertise in the field with patents generated as new varieties are developed. His strengths lie in the research-based aspects of his work as he has made significant contributions to the advancement of the scientific base of his field. His unique position of both research and Extension education provide the opportunity for enhancing the quality, effectiveness and stability of the fruit industry in southwest Michigan and securing the role of MSU Extension at the cutting edge of horticulture education and practice.

 This leads perfectly into our next announcement. Between now and July 1, we are accepting letters of intent for 2012-2013 review. To be considered for the 2012-2013 Step III Review Process, a letter of intent, which includes names and contact information of potential assessors, is due July 1, 2012, with final portfolios due electronically to your institute director with a copy to your district coordinator and Nancy Axtell by Oct. 1, 2012. You can learn more about Step III and all these processes in the Administrative Handbook at Step I, Step II and Step III Promotions.

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