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Extension Operations

Ohio State University Extension


Thoughts from the Director


As we approach the end of July and enter the deep heat and humidity of summer, it can only mean one thing… we are well into camp and fair season in Ohio. The Ohio State Fair opened yesterday, and I was thrilled to be able to go and support Dave Apsley as he received the Cardinal Award, one of the most prestigious recognitions awarded by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources. Congratulations Dave! What I love about the state fair is that it represents the culmination of hundreds of thousands of projects that are diligently worked on throughout the year by our 4-H members that contribute to 21st century skills for youth and the workforce and leadership of tomorrow. It’s such a joy to see the growth and development of Ohio’s youth, the impact that the OSU Extension youth development program has as an economic driver for local and state fairs, and the sense of community, pride, and hope for tomorrow that fairs showcase. Our camps also have an incredible impact on the lives of youth—from our Cloverbuds all the way through our senior 4-H young leaders. The lessons learned and the new experiences that occur contribute to memories and skills that last a lifetime! Our professionals and volunteers make it seamless and look effortless, but we know how much time and effort goes into making the magic happen. 

One only needs to take a short drive anywhere across our state to see the important work going on in our fields and in our urban ag spaces to know how deeply important our work is in feeding Ohio and creating and supporting a safe and accessible food system. The growing season, once again, has not been easy to navigate; and I am continually amazed and appreciative of those who dedicate their lives to ensuring we all have a safe and life-giving food supply. 

Next week marks the special occasion of faculty and staff appreciation at The Ohio State University. I wanted to extend an early expression of thankfulness to each and every one of you in OSU Extension as you do this important work with great knowledge, open hearts, and a commitment to meeting the community, right where they are, at the right time, with just the right touch. Our work in Extension is not easy – it doesn’t fit a predictable time clock, and it often asks much of us. There’s one thing I know though…there’s no other work I know we’d rather do, because it MATTERS and it changes lives and transcends generations. Thank you for being you, bringing what you bring, and always, ALWAYS bringing your best self to this mission. 

Happy Faculty and Staff Appreciation Week! You are all greatly valued and appreciated, though words will never express how much. Please take a moment this next week to extend some kind words and gratitude to those in your circles. Think also about sending a personalized note through 

Best wishes, Jackie