- Author: Pamela Kan-Rice
“We visited offices of 26 of California's 55-member congressional delegation in two days!” said Lucas Frerichs, government and community relations manager.
On March 6-9, a UC ANR delegation attended the 35th Annual Council on Agriculture Research, Extension and Teaching (CARET) meetings in Washington D.C. CARET is part of the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU). They also made congressional visits to explain the importance of science and research to California.
Vice President Glenda Humiston was joined by AVP Wendy Powers, UCB College of Natural Resources Dean Keith Gilless, UCR College of Natural and Agricultural Sciences Dean Kathryn Uhrich, Nutrition Policy Institute Director Lorrene Ritchie, UC Cooperative Extension Specialist Clare Gupta, Chief Innovation Officer Gabe Youtsey, and Frerichs. Industry partners Bill Frost, former UC ANR AVP; Cher Watte, executive director of the California Asparagus Commission; Mike Mellano, fresh cut flower grower; Dina Moore, Humboldt County rancher; and Jean-Mari Peltier, managing partner of Environmental Solutions Group, served as CARET delegates from California.
The group split up into teams to visit the offices of Senators Dianne Feinstein and Kamala Harris, agriculture committee members, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, Minority Leader of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi and other California representatives.
Although no U.S. secretary of agriculture had been confirmed at the time of their visit, members expressed their support for agriculture.
“One thing that members of Congress – Republicans and Democrats – can certainly agree on is that the support for agriculture and the University of California is strong,” Frerichs said.
Read more about the CARET visits in Powers' ANR Adventures blog.
McDougald was director of the Business Operations Center at the UC Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension Center in Parlier. Before joining UC ANR, she worked for UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine for nine years. Over the 26 years she worked for UC ANR, McDougald built a reputation for deftly navigating UC policies to help county-based UC Cooperative Extension employees get things done properly and efficiently.
“A veteran of many ANR organizational re-engineering and structural reorganizations, Cherie is my go-to person on the Administrative Review Council, working through complex business operations issues and implementing solutions,” said Tu Tran, UC ANR associate vice president for business operations.
Frost joined UC ANR in 1994 as a UC Cooperative Extension advisor in natural resources working in El Dorado, Amador and Calaveras counties, where he applied his expertise to issues relating to agriculture or natural resources in the central Sierra Nevada.
“He made major contributions in establishing Agricultural Districts in the County Land Use Plan for El Dorado County,” said Leisz, who worked with him on county issues. “That required we review all of the soils and develop criteria for suitability for commercial agriculture. We examined areas thought to be suitable and produced the guidelines for classification. Thousands of acres were identified and accepted by the County. There were challenges but the selection criteria and mapping were accepted and are in place today. Bill was a leader in that effort.”
Through his research and work with ranchers, Frost improved rangeland management and resource monitoring on the watersheds of the East Bay Municipal Utilities District lands, National Forest System lands, as well as on many private ranches.
“Bill authored a number of the agricultural elements for the General Plan, appeared before the Board of Supervisors and became a respected leader in both agriculture and natural resource elements in the General Plan,” Leisz said. “He provided guidance for the future and always acted in a professional way.”
“As associate vice president, Bill has been instrumental in transforming ANR's processes to include more stakeholder input for selecting research projects to fund and for prioritizing Cooperative Extension positions for recruitment,” said Glenda Humiston, UC vice president for agriculture and natural resources.
Frost earned his doctorate in range management from the University of Arizona and bachelor's and master's degrees in range science from UC Davis. Before joining the University of California, he was a University of Arizona Cooperative Extension agent and director in Gila County from 1991 to 1994. Prior to moving to Arizona, he worked for the California Agricultural Technology Institute at California State University, Fresno, as a postdoctoral research fellow, research associate and a rangeland resources specialist and director of the San Joaquin Experimental Range.
“It's the personal connections that are the strength of Cooperative Extension, I think, the relationships that we form over time and continue to nurture our programs,” Frost said. “I couldn't have done the things I've accomplished without the support of a lot of people.”
The 2016 Call for CE Positions was released January 12, 2016. The position-proposal submittal phase is scheduled to close May 5 at 5 pm. In some earlier materials, the deadline was indicated to be May 2; however, we are now confirming that the deadline is May 5.The position development phase has been open for the past several months, designed to allow as much time as possible for internal consultation and discussions with ANR stakeholders in all program areas.
The program area/unit review phase is May 5 - August 1, 2016. During this time, the Programs Teams, the ANR-affiliated colleges and professional school, and the regional groups of County/Multi-county Directors and Research and Extension Center Directors will conduct reviews, by doing the following for the proposals under their purview: 1) rate (high, medium, “this can wait”); 2) prioritize their highly rated positions (up to 5); and 3) provide concise rationale.
The approved submitters are the Program Team Leaders, the Executive Associate Deans, and the one person from each of the regional groups. These submitters will be provided a reviewer orientation in early May, and the presentation will be posted on the position call webpage afterwards. The public comment period remains open until July 11, 2016.
Submitted CE position proposals can be viewed on thecall web page http://ucanr.edu/2016callforpositions. Click the proposal title link to see the description. In addition, the full call, including the updated position proposal template as well as the process flowchart timeline and criteria documents are posted as well.
Filling critical academic positions remains a top priority for ANR. Over the past several years, more than 90 CE advisors and CE specialists have been hired, and there are 45 more recruitments approved. New 2016 position proposals should identify additional crucial positions.
Associate Vice President
VP Glenda Humiston visited UC Cooperative Extension staff in San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties in January. During her visit, she met with several cooperators, including a blackberry farmer, a vegetable grower and community members who work with youth, families and community development.
I am pleased to announce that VP Glenda Humiston has approved funding 17 projects for UC ANR's 2015 Competitive Grants Program, for a total of $3.7 million over 5 years. The awards range from approximately $50,000 to $450,000. This is comparable to past years' awards. UC ANR awarded $4.46 million supporting 21 projects in 2011, $3.8 million supporting 16 projects in 2012, and $3.5 million supporting 15 projects in 2013. After four grant cycles, the Division has approved funding for 69 projects totaling an investment of $15,464,934. To view the 2015 list of approved projects, please visit http://ucanr.edu/sites/ANRUpdate/files/227066.pdf.
As you may recall, in 2014, the Division did not release a call for ANR's internal competitive grants program in order to conduct a formative assessment to determine if the program's intended results were being reached or if there were plans in place to achieve appropriate outcomes. As a result, applicants this year were required to address strategic initiative priority issue areas to better facilitate the identification and measurement of efforts and impacts.
Key highlights from 2011-2013:
- 229 UC ANR-affiliated faculty and staff — AES, CE Specialists, CE Advisors, and Academic Administrators and Coordinators — have participated in the grants program.
- 95 UC students (56 graduate and 39 undergraduate) have participated in grants.
- 27 early-career UC ANR-affiliated faculty are supported by the grants program (early career is defined as 6 years or less in their current appointment).
- 228 people have served as collaborators, many of them on more than one project.
- 65 non-UC ANR-affiliated agencies/partners have collaborated on UC ANR grants (e.g. USDA, CDFA, nonprofits, non-UC universities, among others).
UC ANR's internal competitive grants program continues to support high-priority issues that are consistent with the Strategic Vision, encourage collaboration among academics, strengthen the research-extension network, support short-term, high-impact projects and contribute policy-relevant outcomes that address significant agricultural, economic, environmental and social issues in California.
With UC ANR's Strategic Vision as our guide, we are focusing our resources where there is an opportunity to demonstrate impact, inform public policymaking and attract new resources to support all elements of UC ANR. In doing so, we strive to achieve the greatest benefit for Californians with our investment. Please join me in congratulating this year's recipients of UC ANR competitive grants.
Associate Vice President