News and Notes: January 6, 2022

In This Issue:

Leadership Notes

COVID-19 Updates

College Connections

Campus Connections/Partnerships

Community Connections

Programming Perspectives

Award Opportunities/Reminders

Operations/Business of Extension

Celebrating Colleagues

Professional Development Opportunities

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

  1. Thoughts from the Director


    I hope your 2022 has started off with great health, good memories of time with family and friends over the holiday season, and inspiration for the year in front of us. I am personally energized about OSU Extension’s future and how all the discussions and active listening sessions within our organization, and with our volunteers, as well as other partners and stakeholders have provided us with excellent input for addressing critical issues and continuing to strengthen our support for our employees and those we serve. In the coming weeks, I will be sharing many of our successes from a challenging but triumphant 2021, and providing an overview of top priorities as we kick off a very promising 2022.

    In addition to New Year’s Day, January is also host to the National Day of Racial Healing. The college has a great many activities and opportunities planned for Jan. 18, and I hope you will be able to make time to participate. Inclusion is one of our five Extension keys; and there are many resources available for us to be intentional about diversity, equity, and inclusion in the work we do in our communities and within our organization, some of which are highlighted below.

    I am very much looking forward to positioning OSU Extension in 2022 to be the best place to work, the best place to be served as Ohioans, and the best place to partner to build capacity (human and capital) to achieve our mission. I am grateful for each and every one of you and your contributions in 2021 and moving forward. I believe that there has never been a more important time and need for Extension, and I believe we have the strength of will, the expertise, and the drive to meet this need. Thank you for bringing your time and talents to the table, and please stay safe and healthy as we continue this important journey together.

    Best wishes, Jackie

  2. Extension Administration Support Staff Update

    Laurie Ward, office administrative associate for the director’s office, has moved on/back to the Wexner Medical Center. She will be working at the James Cancer Hospital with Radiation Oncology, a group she also previously supported. During the two years she worked for the director’s office, Laurie was a great partner in supporting Extension; and we wish her the best as she moves back to a field for which she also has great passion. While the position is being posted and refilled, Vicki Myers with the Operations team, will help address requests for Jackie’s calendar. Please copy Vicki at when you contact Jackie for upcoming meetings and events.


  3. Clarification about Current OSU Extension Office Staffing and Program Procedures

    During the past two years, OSU Extension professionals have demonstrated that we know how to implement COVID-19 precautions while maintaining our educational mission and providing our communities with exceptional customer service.

    Each Extension office (county or state-level) should continue to follow local health guidelines (i.e. mask requirements, physical distancing, school/business closures, or remote work conditions). As has been the case throughout the pandemic, there will be different precautions implemented across the state between counties, Ohio State campus offices, and other entities; and that may also vary from procedures at the Columbus and regional campuses. This is about ongoing employee and audience comfort and safety based on local circumstances.

    As shared by Ohio State President Johnson earlier this week, the university is prioritizing in-person teaching and learning on the Columbus and regional campuses. At those locations, when possible, other in-person events, gatherings or meetings should be transitioned to virtual formats. No timeframe was given, but President Johnson said the university will closely monitor the situation and provide updates as needed. It was also stated for campus locations, that food and drinks should not be served at any in-person event, gathering or meeting and masking should be strictly enforced.

    At the county level, if you are planning programs, the following are reminders:

    • You CAN postpone, reschedule, or move your meeting/event to virtual, depending on your local circumstances.
    • You CAN require participants to wear masks.
    • You CAN set up the meeting space for optimal physical distancing and what you intend to accomplish with each meeting.
    •  You CAN decide not to serve food or beverages at any event or meeting.
    • You CAN ask potential participants not to attend if they have been exposed to COVID-19 or have symptoms themselves.
    •  You MUST keep a record of all attendees.

    As a reminder, best practices for in-person programming during COVID-19 have been summarized and can be reviewed here.

    • When planning local office staffing and public-facing availability, consider the following:
    • Work as a unit to provide the best flexibility to maintain our service to Ohioans and protect one another, in conjunction with your supervisor.
    • Work as a team if you need to change your current county office staffing plan and/or adjust the hours you are open to the public.
    • If this means your local office needs to close (or require appointments), work with your supervisor to determine next steps and communication to stakeholders.

    We will continue to monitor the situation, adjust Extension expectations accordingly, and provide updates. As always, you should also refer to the Safe and Healthy Buckeyes webpage at Thank you for your continued effort to address this ever-changing situation, consider local needs, and do your part to keep one another safe. You are much appreciated!

  4. Lapel Pins Have Been Shipped to all CFAES Offices

    As mentioned in this week’s update from Dean Kress, CFAES lapel pins have been shipped to buildings for distribution to all CFAES faculty and staff. This includes the county Extension offices. The pins were shipped to The Ohio State University, College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences with the appropriate individual building address, but no specific contact person, so please share this information with anyone who may receive packages in your office. Please distribute the pins among all staff in each office. If there is any issue, contact Lora Vest (, and she will follow up with your office.

  5. 2022 CFAES Alumni Award Winners

    The recipients of the 2022 CFAES alumni awards have been announced; and the ceremony to celebrate these award winners will take place in person on Saturday, March 5 at the Fawcett Center. A livestream component will be offered for those unable to attend in person, as well as the larger CFAES community.

    • Meritorious Service Award: Steve Loerch, Pamela Thomas (MS, rural sociology), Henry Zerby
    • Distinguished Alumni: David Brown (BS, dairy technology), Dr. Keith Howard (PhD, plant pathology), Juan Moreno (BS, dairy science), Dr. Alexandre Pires (PhD, ruminant nutrition), Dr. Ivanete Susin (PhD, ruminant nutrition), Bill Tom (BS, animal sciences), Dr. Robert Torres (PhD, agricultural education)
    • International Alumni Award: Lucas de Araujo Souto (MS, animal sciences), Dr. Ilhami Yildiz (MS, agronomy, PhD, agricultural engineering)
    • Young Professional Achievement Award: Dr. Stephanie Langel (BS, animal sciences), Dr. Wendong Zhang (PhD, agricultural economics)

    Nominations for the 2023 CFAES alumni awards are due by June 30. Once an alum is nominated, they stay in the pool for up to three years; and you can update their nomination each year if they are not selected or re-nominate them if their nomination expires. More information about the process and this year’s winners is available online at

  6. 2021 Agricultural and Food Sector Employment and Ohio Unemployment Update Reports Now Available

    What does the Ohio unemployment rate mean and how is it calculated? Do unemployment benefits play a role in keeping people unemployed? Where did all the workers go and what will the future hold? You can find answers to these questions and more in two new reports from the Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics (AEDE).

  7. Apply by Jan. 14 to be Ohio State’s Nominee for the Kellogg Award

    The Office of Outreach and Engagement is seeking applications from university community engagement programs for the internal process to select Ohio State’s nominee for the 2022 W.K. Kellogg Foundation Community Engagement Scholarship Award. The regional award recognizes extraordinary community engagement initiatives. Applications are due by Jan. 14.

    Read more at Note: Extension Administration is working on identifying and collaborating with the dean’s office to nominate some of our most outstanding examples of community engagement. A few of you may be contacted to provide some additional supporting materials. If you have already identified yourself or another entity to be considered, please reach out to Jackie immediately (

  8. 2022 ServeOhio Awards are Accepting Nominations until Jan. 28

    “Volunteerism and service improves lives in Ohio every minute of every day.  The impact of everyday citizens who reach beyond themselves to help their neighbors and communities – transforming themselves and others – shape who we are as a state.  We give, we learn, we serve, we grow.” –ServeOhio, the Ohio Commission on Service and Volunteerism

    The annual ServeOhio Awards recognize outstanding people, groups and initiatives in each region of the state who make great contributions to their communities through service and volunteerism. A cash award of $1,000 is issued to support the organization that benefited from the winner’s service. You can submit nominations until Jan. 28; learn more at The awards will be presented virtually during National Volunteer Week, April 18-24.

  9. Extension Today – Resource Contributions for NBC4 Partnership Pilot Project are Always Welcome

    Extension Today is a pilot project and partnership of NBC4 WCMH-TV, OSU Extension, and CFAES. We are sharing viewer-focused stories about gardening, cooking, and other tips and resources for improving central Ohioans’ gardens, lives, families, and local communities. For the past several months, NBC4 has aired an Extension Today segment on Daytime Columbus each Wednesday, as well as on Saturday and Sunday mornings. Daytime Columbus is a locally-produced talk show which takes a closer look at area businesses, organizations, and resources available in central Ohio. After NBC4 also promotes the show on its Facebook, OSU Extension shares a link to each video, as well as CFAES and Extension resources such as fact sheets, photos, connections with our specialists, etc. online.

    We are always looking to make the content on these new webpages more robust for our viewers. If you have any resources you feel might be a good addition to any of the topics at any time, contact Cheryl Buck (, Extension communication manager. Special thanks to Tim McDermott and Jenny Lobb, educators with the Franklin County office of OSU Extension, for hosting this segment and partnering with numerous guests. Visit to check it out and see if there are any resources you can add to this project!

  10. Regional Agricultural Outlook and Policy Meetings Coming Up

    OSU Extension will present its 2022 regional agricultural outlook and policy meetings from late January through late March. The outlook meetings will be held throughout the state and address agricultural topics of interest in Ohio and across the Corn Belt. Topics will include a grain market outlook; agricultural law updates; the dairy industry in 2022; Ohio’s changing climate; farm policy; Farm Bill 2023; Ohio’s Senate Bill 52 related to wind and solar development; farm real estate and cash rent trends; agricultural input price projections; and federal tax updates. New to this year’s program is the statewide support of the Ohio Corn and Wheat Growers Association, which is pleased to partner with Extension to bring more value to its farm members’ businesses.

    The outlook meetings will be hosted jointly by Union, Madison, and Champaign counties; and also individually by Defiance County, Wayne County, Clinton County, Crawford County, Pickaway County, Muskingum County, and Darke County. The meeting dates are Jan. 13, Jan. 14, Jan. 28, Jan. 31, Feb. 1, Feb. 2, Feb. 14, and March 25. For more details, review the CFAES news release.

  11. AEDE – 2021 Ag Policy and Outlook Conference Session Resources

    Recordings of the sessions from the fall 2021 Ag Policy and Outlook Conference presented by the CFAES Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics (AEDE) are now available on AEDE’s YouTube channel. The expert presenters addressed several issues important to producers, agribusinesses, and elected officials. The full playlist of all six sessions can be accessed by clicking here.

  12. Distinguished Staff Award Nominations due by Jan. 24

    The Distinguished Staff Award recognizes and celebrates staff who have made an impact at The Ohio State University. It is the highest honor bestowed upon Ohio State staff members. Each recipient receives a $1,500 cash award and a commemorative trophy. The nomination deadline is 5pm on Jan. 24. Read more or make a nomination at

  13. Distinguished Diversity Enhancement Award Nominations due by Jan. 24

    The Distinguished Diversity Enhancement Award celebrates diversity efforts at Ohio State and rewards individuals and groups for their commitment to diversity. Honorees are recognized for their impact in making diversity and inclusiveness a part of university best practices by changing daily operations, program components or cultural awareness on the basis of any diversity qualities. Faculty, staff, students, student organizations, and alumni can nominate their colleagues and peers. Each recipient receives a commemorative trophy and $1,200 cash award. The nomination deadline is 5pm on Jan. 24. Read more or make a nomination at

  14. Applications are Open for Annual Ohio State Energy Partners Awards – due by Feb. 11

    In collaboration with Ohio State Energy Partners (OSEP), the Office of Academic Affairs has opened a call for grant proposals that align with the university’s sustainability goals, advance Ohio State priorities, and promote interdisciplinary and community collaboration. Submissions are due Feb. 11. Faculty, staff and students are eligible to apply. Awards range from $10,000 to $50,000. Learn more at


  15. OSU Extension Branding Implementation Update

    Effective September 2021, OSU Extension is tweaking how we apply the university brand to our OSU Extension identity. This is officially a secondary signature under The Ohio State University; it is a “brand mark” that is to be used in conjunction with the CFAES tag and the college name. Visit to see the new mark and basic instructions, as well as download the relevant files.

    Our original date for use of the Extension brand mark on all new or reprinted materials was year-end 2021; however, we recognize the constraints of current project workloads, COVID-19 challenges, updated template needs, etc. Our adjusted goal is by July 1, 2022. Please note – this is not an option; you must implement the new Extension mark. We are simply extending the deadline to do so. Please be patient as the brand changes are made at the central level. More information will be shared in the near future as we work with CFAES Marketing to finish updating the existing Extension-specific instructions and templates and add new items to our branded materials.

    If you need to use a template sooner, you can download the mark and switch it out. There are several other materials this change will affect; those will all also be addressed over time. A Word document also will be developed soon for very basic announcements/content. We also will work on any co-branding needs with Central State University Extension. Extension nametags will remain as is for now. Any brand updates for the Extension state, county, and related unit websites will be handled at the state level. Do not adjust any branding on your county or unit website.

    If you have any questions, contact Cheryl Buck (, Extension communication manager. I am also working on a summary about a variety of marketing and communication resources available to you. That should be available in the next few weeks.

    Brand approval reminder: ALL materials created by OSU Extension professionals for distribution to the public must be reviewed and approved by the CFAES brand approval team. Those items can be submitted to

  16. Ohio Farm Bureau Foundation Awards Jami Dellifield with First Y Prize for Mental Health Initiatives

    Jami Dellifield, educator, family and consumer sciences, with the Hardin County office of OSU Extension, has been awarded the first “Y Prize” given by the Ohio Farm Bureau Federation for her innovative work with farmer mental health.

    The Yvonne Lesicko Perseverance Prize, or Y Prize for short, is a new award created by the Yvonne Lesicko Memorial Fund, created in 2020 to honor Yvonne Lesicko, former vice president of public policy for Ohio Farm Bureau. The fund, within the Ohio Farm Bureau Foundation, was established to support the causes and initiatives that were important to Lesicko. Read more about the prize and Jami’s effort at

  17. 2021 Extension Annual Conference Session Recordings Available

    If you were able to attend the virtual 2021 Extension Annual Conference, thanks for joining us live! You can listen to session recordings via the link to the LOD YouTube at The keynote address with David Horsager will be removed from the playlist on Jan. 15. Also, the JCEP award winner list is posted on the LOD website at

  18. Extension Professionals are latest NACAA Authors – Romich, Zoller

    In the latest issue of the Journal of NACAA (National Association of County Agricultural Agents), Eric Romich and Chris Zoller have shared an article on the Impact of Solar Energy on a Naturally Ventilated Swine Building. Learn more and find the article online.

  19. OSU Leadership Center Offers Upcoming Workshops with a New Year’s Discount

    The new year marks a new chance to grow both personally and professionally, and the OSU Leadership Center will hold several workshops in the coming weeks. To help with your new year's resolutions, the Leadership Center is offering 22% off all workshops held in January through June when you register in the month of January. Learn about upcoming workshops at

  20. Staff Career Development Grant Applications Accepted Through Jan. 31

    Planning your next professional development opportunity and need funding? Applications are being accepted for Staff Career Development Grants until Jan. 31. Eligible staff can apply for funding for professional development opportunities occurring between March and September 2022. Awards will be provided as a reimbursement of up to $1,250 for individuals; $1,750 for groups of 2-10; and $2,000 for groups of 11 or more.

  21. Save the Date – National Day of Racial Healing on Jan. 18

    The National Day of Racial Healing – to be celebrated this year on Jan. 18 – was started by the Kellogg Foundation in 2017. CFAES will be partnering with the Moritz College of Law to host a series of seminars to commemorate the day. This will be our second year participating in this event, hosting sessions and handouts from 9am to 3:30pm. Everyone is welcome to participate in all the sessions, or one or two as your schedule permits. Additional information will be available soon.

  22. CFAES 2022 Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Speaker Series Announced

    The CFAES Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion will be hosting a speaker series throughout 2022. Featured speakers come from diverse fields and will highlight DEI issues that appeal to a broad audience. All sessions will take place on Zoom at 12-1:15pm on the third Thursdays in February, April, June, September, and November.

    Each session will involve a presentation followed by Q&A. More information can be found at To receive direct communications about upcoming DEI programs, sign up for the monthly CFAES DEI newsletterA list of all upcoming CFAES Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion webinars can be found here.

  23. Sisterlocking Discoarse: Race, Gender, and the Twenty-First-Century Academy – Book Reading on Jan. 19

    You're invited to a book reading by Dr. Valerie Lee, professor emerita, The Ohio State University. Based on a career as a scholar, teacher, and administrator, Dr. Lee shares her wisdom about life and leadership in the academy. Drawing inspiration from the African American storytelling traditions she has spent decades studying and teaching, Lee approaches issues of race, gender, social justice, academic labor, and leadership with a voice that is clear, intimate, and humorous. Lee's journey will appeal to readers who are committed to making higher education more inclusive, while speaking more broadly to the experiences of professional women of color.  This virtual event is free and open to the public on Jan. 19 from 3:30-4:30pm. Register online to attend.