CD Wire - December 17, 2018

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

AD Update:

-Greg Davis, Assistant Director

What Do You Do?

It is that time of year again when the calendar is telling us that things are winding down and we look forward to a break in the usual work routine. It is the holiday time of year when we try to slow down a bit for catching up with friends and family and colleagues. 

Such visits typyically involve describing our work, and I had two such opportunities over this past weekend. To help others better understand Extension work and how we go about it, you may want to revisit the Extension CD marketing language we developed with the help of Don Van Meter, a consultant who has been instrumental in the success of our county levy campaign efforts in the past.

If you are like me, the odds are high that you will have the chance to reply to a question like this: “Oh neat! You work at OSU? So you teach classes in Columbus or at a branch campus?” Using our CD marketing language you might respond, “Well, really, the state of Ohio is my campus and the residents of Ohio are my students.” In response to what will most likely be a politely perplexed expression you might then offer something like this: “I am part of a team located in communities across Ohio who:

  1. Bring people, organizations and communities together to get things done
  2. Lead groups and organizations through obstacles standing between vision and reality
  3. Help identify assets, capabilities, needs, resources and solutions
  4. Collaborate in the creation, retention and expansion of economic and community development opportunities
  5. Serve as a ‘gateway’ to The Ohio State University and a national network of information and resources

On any given day and any given moment I might be a catalyst, convener, partner and/or leader.” 

Last night I was fortunate enough to be visiting with someone who asked early in our conversation, “Oh, so you work with county Extension offices?!? I refer my clientele to county Extension offices all the time for all the great resources that can be found there.” Ah, if only every such conversation were that simple!

A ‘Holiday Letter’ from Extension CD

Spotlight This time of year also gives us a chance to review and reflect on our work and our accomplishments (okay, I know ensuring we have adequately documented our efforts for the annual report necessitates such reflection). In true ‘Holiday Letter’ fashion, I have tried to capture the highlights of our year.

Our CD family was very productive in 2018. A key effort was planning and producing the NACDEP National Conference in Cleveland, June 10-13. This was the culmination of three years of planning and preparation and the team demonstrated a real ‘can-do’ attitude from beginning to end. Of course, we did all of this in addition to the usual high level of participation in conference presentations and poster sessions. Our CD blogging efforts were recognized with a national team award and five others were recognized individually for other efforts at the conference awards banquet. We celebrated the success of our team effort at a July 17 Columbus Clippers ballgame after a short meeting at the Franklin County Extension office on Spring Street in Columbus. To see some of the conference highlights, take a look at the 9-minute conference video at YouTube. We are working on a conference photo album that should be completed soon as well.

A number of our CD professionals continued to exercise their skills in formal leadership positions in the organization. Cindy Bond served as the Ohio ESP president, Amanda Osborne served as the NACDEP president for Ohio JCEP, and Meghan Thoreau president elect. David Civittolo served as national NACDEP president elect and then president. Nancy Bowen served as national NACDEP treasurer and Brian Raision as national NACDEP board representative for the north central region.

We participated in the first-ever OSU Community Engagement Conference focused on Health and Wellness early in the year. It was received so well that a 2019 version is planned and will involve 11 CD folks as presenters, January 23-24.

Colleagues Brian Raison, Eric Romich, and Godwin Apaliyah received promotions in rank. Raison and Romich to associate professor (with tenure) and Apaliyah to A&P Educator III.

We continued to use our statewide CD in-services to expand and strengthen our sense of team, content expertise and professional networks. One held in conjunction with the Department of AEDE enabled us to learn more about recent and planned research and outreach efforts in areas such as housing, recreation valuation, water quality and shale gas development from Mark Partridge, Zoe Plakias, Allen Klaiber, Abdoul Sam, Daniela Miteva, Brian Roe and Brent Sohngen. We focused extensively on how we can better support implementation of designEXT when we met September 5.

Three colleagues were able to participate in professional development opportunities with assistance from the CD Support Fund. Jill Bartolotta was able to present at NACDEP, Nicole Debose attended a workshop focused on collective impact, and Amanda Osborne attended training for LEED certification for Green Housing and Neighborhood Development.

We welcomed new colleagues David Dugan (Adams), Brooke Beam (Highland), Gwynn Stewart (Noble), James Morris (Brown), Kenzie Johnston (Delaware), and Marlee Stollar (state CD office). And, we had to bid farewell to others: Lauren Vargo (Cuyahoga), Carol Hamilton (Delaware), Brenda Lehman and Becky Passet (Alber Center) and Mariah Stollar (state CD office).

We also transitioned our program and professional accomplishments reporting systems from Research in View (RiV) to VITA.

Long-time state-level programmatic partnerships continued with township officials via the Ohio Township Association and county natural resource leaders and staff via the Ohio Federation of Soil and Water Conservation Districts. Both are heavily focused on strengthening leadership and organizational capacity and involve nearly 10,000 individuals working at the local level in communities across Ohio.

As we look ahead to 2019, we have plans to gather on at least three occasions. Please put a hold on these dates:

  • January 23-24:  Community Engagement Conference
  • January 25:  Extension Annual Conference
  • May 14:  CD In-service at 4-H Center
  • August 14:  CD In-service hosted by Sea Grant/Stone Lab at Gibraltar Island (Put-in-Bay)

We’ll talk more about these and other items in the coming weeks. In the meantime, I hope you plan to enjoy some time away from work with family and friends, reflect on what is truly important to you, and re-energize for 2019.

There will be no CD Wire published until January 7, 2019. Thank you for your dedication to the mission over this past year, and best wishes to you and yours for the holidays and happiness in the New Year!

-- Greg and Sandy



Register for Remaining VITA Training Sessions: 

Reporting There are two remaining VITA training sessions via Zoom. There are also two more opportunities to participate in “office hours” for less formal question/answer sessions.

Here are the dates/times of the longer, three-hour training opportunities: 

  • Tuesday, December 18 (1:30 to 4:30 p.m.) via Zoom
  • Wednesday, December 19 (9 a.m. to noon) via Zoom

Here are the dates/times for the shorter question/answer sessions via Zoom:

  • Thursday, December 20 (10-11 a.m.)
  • Friday, December 21 (9-10 a.m.)

RSVP for training sessions and office hours here. Training sessions are listed on page 2 of the survey and office hours are listed on page 3. Zoom connection information will only be sent to those who register via the survey link.

Also, if you cannot attend any of the opportunities listed above, please remember you can view the training materials from last December’s VITA trainings on the Learning and Organizational Development website. There is a recorded training posted (where you can pause, fast forward, rewind and mute) and the PowerPoint slides that were used (not a lot has changed in the last year). 

If you are having technical difficulties in VITA, please email

Upcoming NCRCRD Webinar - December 18:


Leading in a Global World

  • December 18 at 1:30 p.m.
  • Presented by Holli Arp and Tobias Spanier (University of Minnesota), Kari O’Neill and Kenneth Sherin (South Dakota State University).

    Population shifts require that Extension community development programming reshape itself built on principles of equity and inclusion; programming that cultivates leaders who are culturally agile and model global compassion in order to reduce racial disparities and tension occurring in our communities. For complete information on this webinar and other upcoming webinars, as well as the webinar link, visit here. Remember - recorded webinars can be viewed here.

      Leadership & Administration in Extension Education - Online Course for Spring Semester:

      Online course The “Leadership & Administration in Extension Education” course has been changed to an ONLINE offering this Spring Semester (January - April 2019). No need to travel to Columbus. The class meets (virtually, asynchronously) each week with a combination of video lectures, online discussions, and (light) external readings.

      It is a graded and for-credit class. It will count toward a master’s or PhD program if you apply and are accepted into ACEL’s graduate program. However, you may take this OSU graduate course without enrolling in a grad program. OSU employees get a fee-waiver. Apply by December 31. For more information, visit here.

      Feel free to call or email Brian Raison ( or 937-372-9971, ext. 125) with any questions or to request the syllabus.
      About the course:

      AEE 8420:  Leadership and Administration in Agricultural and Extension Education
      Online - 3 credit hours. Class ID: 29513 

      This course focuses on putting leadership theory into practice for administration and management. We’ll closely examine your personal leadership styles in order to help you apply them in real-life settings. 
      The course is designed to familiarize current and future leaders with fundamental concepts of leadership and administration/management within Extension, education, and community organizations. Participants will:

      • Understand functions and differentiate leadership, management, and administration within your role as a leader.

      • Understand and apply selected leadership theories/frameworks to elements of organizational and program management and administration.

      • Develop or enhance skills for successful leadership and supervision of others.

      • Develop or enhance knowledge of effective personnel management and human resource development processes.

      • Develop or enhance skills to be a successful leader with administrative responsibilities.

      Upcoming eXtension Web Sessions:

      eXtension Visit eXtension Learn ( to view and register for upcoming webinar sessions. Please share these events with others who may also be interested.

      Topics include:

      • Bringing Presence to Community: A positive psychology short course (part 1) - Wednesday, January 9 at 11:30 a.m. 

      Next EPN Breakfast – January 15:

      Climate Action The next EPN Breakfast will be held on Tuesday, January 15, from 7:15 to 9:30 a.m. at the Nationwide and Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center. The discussion will be focused on weather-related challenges in our region such as flooding, drought, and increases in urban heat islands.

      Facilitated by the Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission, this EPN Breakfast program convenes a group of community leaders across public and private sectors, including Franklin County, the City of Columbus, and Smart Columbus, who are making targeted efforts to mitigate and adapt to greenhouse gas-induced climate change. Join the conversation as we explore local, aspirational goals that organizations in our region have set towards climate change mitigation and adaptation. You will also receive status updates from public and private efforts seeking to reduce our regional carbon footprints and work towards creating a more climate-resilient community. Visit here to register and for more information.

      Mental Health First Aid Training - February 19:

      Mental health Youth Mental Health First Aid Training® (adults assisting youth) and Mental Health First Aid Training® (adults assisting other adults) will be offered February 19 from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. at the Nationwide and Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center.

      Both of these programs are 3-year certification courses similar to CPR and basic first aid. Participants will learn how to recognize the signs and symptoms of mental health problems and provide assistance to those experiencing a mental health crisis. All Extension staff, regardless of role and program area, are encouraged to take this training. If you work with people in any capacity, this training will be beneficial to you.  
      Registration is $45 and includes all materials, lunch, and 3-year certification. The training is limited to 35 participants for each course. If you have questions about either course, contact Amanda Raines ( Register here.

      National Sustainability Summit & National Extension Energy Summit – April 16-19:


      Registration is now open for the National Sustainability Summit & National Extension Energy Summit to be held in Tampa, Florida, April 16-19. Early bird rates are available until January 16. Visit here for complete information.

      NSS+NEES 2019 is a forum for connection and exchange at the nexus of science and stewardship. Join 200+ fellow Extension agents, educators, researchers, students, community partners, and sustainability and energy leaders from across the U.S. at this joint national conference. Learn about the latest research, exchange innovative programming strategies, update or reinvigorate your educational toolbox, and cultivate new communities of practice around energy, water, food systems, land, climate, and community resilience.



      ENGIE Sustainable Energy Research Grants - Proposals due January 11:

      Energy ideas Call for proposals is now open for sustainable energy research seed grants that promote collaborative energy in sustainable energy and stimulate scholarly collaboration with ENGIE North America.

      Applicants may request up to $50,000. Funding priority areas include, but are not limited to:

      • Innovations in renewable energy technologies and resources
      • Energy systems and management (e.g., decentralizing energy systems, power grid resiliency and energy storage)
      • Smart mobility
      • Carbon management

      Read more and download the RFP here.

      Grant Proposal Assistance Available:

      Grant Development Support Unit The Grant Development Support Unit (GDSU) is a part of the CFAES Office for Research and Graduate Education. Their mission is to serve CFAES employees as they conceptualize, develop, write, and submit their proposals to external funders, including industry, non-profit, for profit, foundations, state, local and federal sponsors. They work across all disciplines with the goal of making the proposal development process as straightforward and streamlined as possible.

      GDSU’s goal is to help you with all the peripheral documents that are required, so you can concentrate on the SCIENCE! They can help you with budgets, templates, required forms and documents, subawards, proposal submission system (i.e. Cayuse, Fastlane) and serve as a liaison between you and the Office of Sponsored Programs (OSP) during the proposal submission process.

      The GDSU is a free service provided to all College of Food, Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (CFAES) faculty. They are available to assist you with proposal development and submission and answer grant related questions. Offices are located on the Wooster and Columbus campuses. Feel free to contact grant development specialists Melissa Burant (614-292-5748; or Pam Schlegel (330-263-3782; You can also visit their website for OSU proposal resources.



      A Future Lima Jackson Street Urban Garden, Community Space:

      South Jackson Gardens
      Ohio State and multiple community partners have come together to build a garden and community space on previously vacant land in the city of Lima. The South Jackson Community Garden Project grew out of an OSU Connect and Collaborate Grant to reuse vacant land within the city to design and build a model urban garden and community space for food and health-related entrepreneurial activities.

      Partial funding for this project, led by Nancy Bowen-Ellzey, is also being provided by a Connect and Collaborate Grant. Read more.

      Shared Services opens in Pomerene Hall:

      Shared Services Looking for a special data set? Interested in data tools, training opportunities or computing options? Stop by TDAI's Shared Services in 180 Pomerene Hall.

      Offering one-on-one consulting with technology partners from across campus, Shared Services is designed to help researchers, students and staff explore resources and solutions for data science and analytics projects. Read more.

      Articles/Publications of Interest:

      Farm Bill Could Help Farmers Weather Low Milk, Other Commodity Prices (CFAES News)

      CFAES Monthly (December 2018)

      CFAES Research News (December 2018)

      eXtension Roundup (November 2018)

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