ANR Employees
University of California
ANR Employees

ANR Update

May 20 town hall with VP Humiston to introduce Staff Assembly and Principles of Community

Plan to join the May 20 town hall to learn about the new Staff Assembly and Principles of Community! All ANR staff and academics are encouraged to participate.

1:30 to 2:30 p.m.                                                           
Friday, May 20, 2016

VP Glenda Humiston will

  • share her vision for Staff Assembly and take questions about the new organization. The Staff Assembly will give staff a collective voice to senior leadership, offer opinions and recommendations on policies, processes and programs, foster an understanding of ANR's mission and offer career training and professional development.
  • discuss the new Principles of Community,which was also formed as a result of the Work Environmental Assessment to document the values that will create a more welcoming and inclusive work environment. The Principles of Community will be a tool for education and training.

As a follow up to the ANR Work Environment Assessment, VP Humiston formed a committee of ANR staff to draft the Principles of Community, structure and bylaws for the Staff Assembly. All of the UC campuses have a Staff Assembly, as does UCOP and Lawrence Livermore Labs. All ANR staff — no matter the appointment type, including county-paid staff — are part of the new Staff Assembly.

How you can participate:

If you will be at 2801 Second Street on May 20, please join the town hall in the San Joaquin Valley and Sacramento Valley rooms.

If you plan to join the call remotely, we encourage you to gather with others to use one computer and/or speaker phone because the number of connections is limited.

You should be able to hear and see the presentations. If you haven't used Adobe Connect before using the computer, you may want to log in ahead of time in case it requires you to download a plug-in. Access Adobe Connect through your ANR Portal (in the right column).

  • ReadyTalk: If you do not have access to a computer with speakers or you just want to listen in, you can call in to ReadyTalk directly using a telephone:

Call-in: 866-740-1260      
Access Code: 6063660

  • Q&A: Questions will be handled by a moderator using an Adobe Connect chat window. We will not be able to take questions over the phone.

For technical help, contact the ANR IT Service Desk Team at or (530) 750-1212.

Posted on Friday, May 20, 2016 at 9:57 AM

A proposal to strengthen ANR’s leadership structure

Dear Colleagues,

As most of you know, Bill Frost, our associate vice president (AVP), intends to retire in June. In light of his impending departure from ANR, we are looking at augmenting the leadership structure to provide better support for ANR's extensive programs and initiatives. Currently we have challenges in balancing program delivery and administration with the need to expand our efforts in strategic initiatives, partnerships, funds development and raising the profile of ANR. To better provide for those needs, we're moving forward with a few modest but important modifications. The changes are in no way set in stone — we're going to evaluate things over the next several months and will make adjustments as needed. Those changes will be:

  • The new AVP, which is under recruitment, will have several current responsibilities removed and be based at UC Office of the President in Oakland (UCOP). This will allow the new AVP and the AVP for Business Operation to work closely as a team on day-to-day operations, and to coordinate regularly with counterparts at UCOP. The new AVP will be more focused on ANR's engagement with the entire UC system, policy issues and partnerships that will benefit ANR. One aim of this change is to augment the Vice President's ability to engage more on funds development, strategic opportunities, policy development, expanding collaborations and raising ANR's profile.

  • We will create a new position, Vice Provost Strategic Initiatives & Statewide Programs. The leaders of the strategic initiatives, Nutrition Policy Institute, California Institute for Water Resources and statewide programs will all report to the Vice Provost Strategic Initiatives & Statewide Programs. The position, which will be based in Davis, will coordinate ANR's engagement in the UC President's initiatives, provide leadership for ANR's Strategic Initiatives and enhance synergies between initiatives and our various programs. Like the Vice Provost for Cooperative Extension, this new position will report to the AVP.

  • Management of the REC System will be removed from the AVP and the current associate director position will be elevated to director. Lisa Fischer will be appointed interim REC System director for two years, followed by an open recruitment for the director position.

Going forward, the Senior Leadership Team, along with 21 program and unit directors, will serve as my VP Council. We will meet quarterly to strategize on how best to engage with initiatives, new partners and opportunities as they arise. The VP Council will also serve as a sounding board on policy and program issues as well as help design action plans to best serve ANR goals. Shortly after these changes are implemented, we will also seek to empower both the Academic Assembly and the new Staff Assembly to serve as strong voices in the shared governance of ANR.

It is my hope that these changes will enhance our efforts to rebuild the ANR and Cooperative Extension footprint around the state. These modifications should allow me to do what I see as the core part of my job: finding new sources of funding, building new partnerships, enhancing key collaborations, and positioning ANR as the premiere source of science and solutions for the challenges facing agriculture, natural resources and the health of our communities. I also believe that improving the ability of all the voices in the ANR system to be heard will greatly improve how we advance that science and develop those solutions. We will all be able to achieve far more as a well-functioning team with access to the knowledge, information and skills of every member.

Thank you for being part of the ANR team. I look forward to working with you as we implement these changes!


Glenda Humiston
Vice President

View or leave comments for ANR Leadership at

This announcement is also posted and archived on the ANR Update pages.

Posted on Friday, February 26, 2016 at 9:47 AM

Strategic Initiative leaders respond to feedback from the Joint SI Conference

The October 5-7, 2015, Joint Strategic Initiative conference had great participation, with 353 people attending. During the January Strategic Initiative (SI) leaders meeting with Bill Frost, we carefully reviewed the conference feedback. The conference evaluation survey had a good response rate (23%). A summary of responses to the closed-ended questions is at Below are some highlighted themes from the open-ended questions, and how we are planning to address them:

  • 75% of respondents liked the Joint SI Conference format compared to having individual SI conferences.
    • In response to this preference, as well as to better facilitate synergies with Workgroups and Program Teams, we plan to have SI-hosted conferences in 2016 - 17. Multiple SIs will co-sponsor, and the conferences will be co-planned with relevant Program Teams or Workgroup leaders.
  • When asked “What did you learn during the conference that you may use in your work?,” the respondents' most common themes were 1) in-service trainings, 2) networking and 3) better understanding ofANR.
    • These aspects will continue to be emphasized in the future SI co-hosted conferences.
  • When asked “What is working well?” with the SIs, the themes explain that the SIs provide value for outward messaging, as well as focus, direction and coordinated effort.
  • To build on existing strengths, we will develop a more formal external communications strategy for the SIs, to include producing an impact piece to illustrate the value of the SIs to ANR, UC and California. In addition, we will be working with ANR's Communication Services and Information Technology to improve the SI webpages and social media presence, and to develop regular communications tools.
  • When asked “What could make theSIs better?,” the themes found that some people are still unclear aboutSIs, including overall function, respective priorities, cross-disciplinary efforts and impact.
    • To help clarify the role and scope of the SIs, we plan to take a more active role in orienting new academics to the SIs. We are considering participation in the new academic program orientation, county director meetings and program team meetings, and to initiate meetings with small groups of new advisors and specialists.
    • To facilitate improved understanding of the SI priorities, we will encourage all advisors and specialists to apply for the ANR Competitive Grants Program at least once, and provide Letter of Intent writing training. This will help ensure that academics are familiar with the SI strategic plans and priorities, given these are the focus of the Request for Proposals (RFP).
    • To better capture and communicate SI impact, we discussed creating a project recognition program, and will work to develop a coordinated evaluation plan. We will meet with county directors, department chairs and campus-based specialists to share information on SIs and hear about successful ANR network collaborations.

We thank all those who provided this valuable feedback about the 2015 conference. We will continue to seek input as we develop and implement strategies to coordinate ANR's considerable infrastructure and talent, focusing on the most critical issues, seeking new resources and new ways of partnering within and outside UC, and communicating our collective impact finding science-based solutions for California.


ANR's Strategic Initiative Leaders

David Doll, Sustainable Food Systems

John Harper, Sustainable Natural Ecosystems

Keith Nathaniel, Healthy Families and Communities

Doug Parker, Water Quality, Quantity, and Security

Cheryl Wilen, Endemic and Invasive Pests and Diseases

Posted on Wednesday, February 17, 2016 at 2:09 PM

Nominate ANR staff for STAR awards

Nominations are being accepted for the ANR Staff Appreciation and Recognition (STAR) Program until March 31. The purpose of the award program is to recognize and reward outstanding staff individual and team performance within Agriculture and Natural Resources.

Under the STAR Program, managers are able to recognize, acknowledge and reward employees for exceptional performance and/or significant contributions related to and supportive of individual, departmental, divisional, and/or organizational goals and objectives.

Managers may acknowledge and reward individuals and teams demonstrating:

  • Exceptional performance: Demonstrated and sustained exceptional performance that consistently exceeds goals and work expectations in quantity and/or quality.
  • Creativity: One-time innovation or creation that results in time/dollar savings, revenue enhancement, and productivity improvement; and/or ongoing innovative/creative activities that benefit organizational systems, protocols, and/or procedures.
  • Organizational abilities: Exhibiting extraordinary skills in leadership resulting in the accomplishment of significant departmental or divisional goals and objectives; effective project management, which could include developing a project and/or implementing a project with substantial success; and/or demonstrating organizational capability leading to a greater level of effectiveness.
  • Work success: Significantly exceeding productivity, customer service, quality of care or similar goals, including demonstrating superior interactions with managers, peers, supervisors, subordinates, the University community, and/or clients and customers served.
  • Teamwork: For team awards, the following criteria, plus the criterion above, will be considered. Acting as an exceptionally effective and cooperative team member or team leader for a team that has significantly exceeded the goals/objectives of the department/unit.

To read the STAR award guidelines and restrictions and to download the nomination form, see the attachments.

Application and selection process:

February 2016: The call for nominations is distributed to all ANR unit directors.

No later than March 31, 2016: Nomination applications submitted via e-mail to

April - May 2016: An appointed review committee will review applications submitted by the due date. The committee will select up to 20 individuals and two teams to be awarded.

May 2016: Unit directors and award winners are notified of the final decisions.


View or leave comments for ANR Leadership at

This announcement is also posted and archived on the ANR Update page.


2015-16 ANR Local STAR Plan Guidelines Final
2015-16 ANR Local STAR Plan Guidelines Final

ANR STAR Nomination Form 2015 2016 FINAL
ANR STAR Nomination Form 2015 2016 FINAL

Posted on Wednesday, February 10, 2016 at 11:23 AM

Professional development resources available to ANR employees

Dear Colleagues,

As a UC ANR employee, you automatically have membership to a top-notch professional development resource. To take your career to the next level of performance, check out CEB Learning & Development. It takes seconds to register or reset a password and participate in webinars, download job aids and participate in discussion forums.

Here is a quick list of a few CEB resources:

Resources for All Employees ­­– Develop yourself as a high-performing employee, not only effective at your tasks, but also as someone who contributes to others' performance and uses others' contributions to improve your own performance.

On-the-Job Activity Builder – Use this interactive tool to build employee development plans with recommended on-the-job learning activities based on the competencies you select.

Manager Guide: Holding Effective Career Discussions – Guide your direct reports through identifying and progressing toward their career aspirations.

Manager Excellence Resource Center – Search the online portal (separate from the Learning & Development member website) to find manager development and employee development resources.

Visit to get the most out of your CEB Learning & Development membership for yourself and your program.


Jodi Azulai
ANR Training and Development coordinator



Posted on Thursday, February 4, 2016 at 12:18 PM

Next 5 stories | Last story

Webmaster Email: