CD Wire - September 10, 2012

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Investing in 'Team'

In a couple of weeks, we’ll have a chance to spend some time together at the annual CD Unit Retreat. I get excited when I think about the work we do, the way we work together, and the seemingly endless opportunities for both. I am particularly energized knowing we’ll have the better part of September 26-27 to share and learn, advance and elevate specific program efforts, and continue to build our team. Hopefully in your preparations for this event (see homework reminder below) your enthusiasm for your work and being part of Extension is beginning to grow as well.

When I think about our unit and the time we’ll spend together in a couple of weeks, I am reminded of two particularly relevant ‘realities of teamwork’ shared by a number of our colleagues (Chatfield, et. al.) in an April 2004 JOE article (you can check out their thoughts at One deals with collegiality; specifically how shared leadership, mutual respect, and the ability to challenge each other around ideas can be so very empowering. These are key building blocks for highly functioning team efforts. Our ability to identify and advance team goals depends on the strength of these fundamental building blocks. As such, the planning committee has designed a retreat agenda with a variety of opportunities to reflect on and exercise these skills. Another team reality per Chatfield et al., ‘Teams work when members believe that teamwork is its own reward.’ Like most things in life, it seems what you get out of your team efforts is related to what you invest. When we want to work with others and are excited about the role(s) we might play, the product(s) of those efforts can be very impactful and rewarding. I am hopeful that each of us is meaningfully engaged with others whether they are efforts of a signature program team, a statewide conference planning team, or the CD Unit, for example.

See you in a couple of weeks!

Homework Reminder

  • Prepare your ‘elevator speech’… i.e., how would you introduce yourself and what you do in 60 seconds or less? (Okay, a 60 second elevator ride may also involve standing in line to get on the elevator and a break down or two as well).
  • Think about and narrow down your ‘best thing I ever did’ story….some little ‘nugget’ that may help others in their professional pursuits told in a 1-2 minute story. Win extra points by tying your ‘nugget’ back to the ‘Strengths’ learned at our January 2012 face to face meeting.
  • Reflect on the work you’ve done and then identify and describe one or two of your ‘most used programs’ (click herefor the form to use - one per program) … prepare to describe at least one program in a two-minute overview. Send your completed form(s) to Sandy by September 19.
  • The above focus on who you are and programs specific to you. In terms of CD unit operations, what is the one most strategically smart thing (in your opinion) the CD unit could do to secure its future? Maybe it is a comprehensive marketing campaign? More attention paid to partnership development? Active pursuit of ‘other’ funding? After identifying this one thing, what are the ways or tactics we might use to achieve it?

Send in Photos for an Online CD Photo Album

As you are out and about, please take some photos (rural, urban, program-related, etc.) and send them to Sandy so that she can compile an online CD photo album for everyone's use. The photos will be useful for Web pages, CD Quarterly News articles, promotional flyers, etc.



Tips, Tools and Telling the Story: Evaluating Community Food Initiatives Webinar - September 13:

On September 13 from 12:00 to 1:00 p.m., Community Food Centres Canada (CFCC) is hosting a free webinar on evaluating community food initiatives. Due to popular demand, capacity has been increased. The webinar is geared at program managers, funders, and other practitioners who are already engaged in evaluation or have a basic understanding of evaluation and are looking to explore evaluation topics in greater depth. Meredith Davis, CFCC’s Research and Evaluation Manager, will describe the process that CFCC went through to create its own national evaluation strategy, including successes, challenges, and lessons learned along the way. Topics to be explored include: creating a theory of change, building an evaluative culture, developing indicators, developmental evaluation (DE), social return on investment analysis (SROI), evaluating in a respectful and dignified manner, designing effective evaluation tools, and common pitfalls of evaluation. The last 15 minutes of the webinar will be set aside for group exploration. To register, visit If you have any questions, feel free to contact Ross Curtner (

Specialist to Demystify Harmful Algal Blooms at Farm Science Review Session - September 18:

Potentially harmful algal blooms (HABs) have become more prevalent throughout Ohio in recent years. These blooms on public waters have drawn much attention in the media, but are still a mystery to many people, according to Eugene Braig, Ohio State University Extension aquatic ecosystems program director. Braig will cover some of the problems that can be caused by HABs, the organisms that cause them, factors that contribute to blooms, and how to keep family and pets safe from possible HAB poisoning, during a session titled “Harmful Algal Blooms,” held September 18 from 2 -3 p.m. during the Farm Science Review near London, Ohio. The program will be held at the Review’s Gwynne Conservation Area. To read the complete article, visit

Local Foods Network Teleconference - September 20:

The next OSU Extension Local Foods Network teleconference will be held on Thursday, September 20. On the third Thursday of each month at 9:00 a.m., the OSU Extension Local Foods Network conducts a networking teleconference for any OSU Extension faculty/staff member with an interest in local foods topics. Extension employees discuss programming and in-service needs, jointly identify and/or plan educational programs, and become more knowledgeable about various issues related to local foods. Send an email message to Mike Hogan at to be added to the mailing list to receive monthly instructions for logging on to these teleconferences.

NCRCRD Webinar: 21 Years of First Impressions - October 2:

The North Central Regional Center for Rural Development will present a free webinar, titled "21 Years of First Impressions," on October 2 at noon. First Impressions is a simple tool that has been around since 1991 and can be used as part of a broader economic development approach, capturing people's perceptions and attitudes. It’s one of the early tools to apply (and re-apply) to help the community establish priorities for tourism development, retail trade development, business attraction/relocation decisions, and recruiting “talent” to town for employers (public, private for-profit, private non-profit). This webinar will be led by three Extension educators in three different states that have used and evaluated the use of the program in their state, one of which is Myra Moss. Participants will learn how this peer learning model can be used effectively to impact positive change within the community. For complete information, including how to enter the meeting room, click here or visit

Celebration of Research Month begins October 2:

October is Celebration of Research month, an annual recognition and celebration of the depth and breadth of research at the university. The 2012 Research Expo will be held on Tuesday, October 2, at the Ohio Union from 9:30 a.m. until noon. More than 50 research centers, core laboratories, and campus vendors will be showcased. On Thursday, October 11, Caroline Whitacre, vice president for research, will deliver the annual "State of Research" address at 8:30 a.m. in the Wexner Center Film/Video Theater and present the 2012 Innovator of the Year awards. For a full schedule of events, including Science Sundays and "Being a PI at Ohio State - Roles and Responsibilities," visit Contact Jeff Agnoli (292-6269) with questions regarding the Expo and Beth Haas (688-4725) with questions regarding the Address/Awards.

Ohio Community Wildlife Cooperative Annual Conference - November 7:

The Ohio Community Wildlife Cooperative Annual Conference will be held November 7 from 9:00 a.m. until 3:15 p.m. at the Nationwide and Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center in Columbus. This year's theme is "Living with Wildlife and Resolving Conflicts in Ohio," and the conference workshops are geared toward local government leaders (city, township, and village representatives; county commissioners) who need help resolving wildlife damage management within their jurisdiction. The conference is open to natural resources professionals, Extension educators, and land managers who have an interest in this topic. Conference fee is $35, and pre-registration is required. For more information and to register, visit



Extension Annual Conference RFP Deadline Extended to September 13:

The proposal deadline for OSU Extension's 2012 Annual Conference (December 5) has been extended to September 13. Proposals may be submitted to present in half-session, full-session, or poster format. Click here to view the summary for an overview and submission instructions.



President Gee's State of Ohio Tour 2012:

President Gee recently spread some Buckeye spirit throughout Ohio as part of his annual summer tour project. This year's 6-day, 39-county, 1722-mile, 41-stop tour had three common threads: economic development, agriculture and food safety, and health and wellness. To view the video and read more, visit

Article of Interest:

Beyond Farmers Markets - Why Local Food Belongs on Grocery Shelves
To read this article from the Atlantic magazine about untapped opportunities for producers to sell their products locally, further fueling the U.S. economy and expanding agriculture's impact, visit


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Ohio State University Extension Community Development helps communities enhance their well-being.


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