- Author: Pamela Kan-Rice
Gonzalves named UCCE director for Monterey, San Benito and Santa Cruz counties
David Gonzalves joined UC ANR on Feb. 1 as the new director for UCCE in Monterey, San Benito and Santa Cruz counties.
As director, Gonzalves is responsible for the coordination and overall operation of UCCE programs in the three counties. He will provide administrative oversight of educational and applied research programs, maintain effective communication within UC and county government, maintain positive working relationships with partnering public and private agencies and expand collaborations.
Gonzalves brings experience working for county government and UC. Most recently, Gonzalves was a campus building official at UC Merced. He is well-versed in county government and the importance of following local requirements as a construction official.Beginning his career at the County of Merced as a fire inspector, Gonzalves worked his way up to supervising building inspector and eventually assistant development services director. Then, for the City of Merced, he filled the role of chief building official and ultimately director of development services, leading the city's Building, Planning and Engineering teams. For three years, he served as Tuolumne County's Community Resources Agency director.
The hiring of Gonzalves relieves former county directors Maria de la Fuente, Devii Rao and Mark Bolda of administrative duties so they may focus on their academic responsibilities.
Gonzalves is based at the UCCE Monterey County office in Salinas and can be reached at email@example.com.
Woodward to assist Meyer, Obrist
Vanya Woodward joined UC ANR on Feb. 1 as an executive assistant to Deanne Meyer, interim associate vice president for programs and strategic initiatives, and Daniel Obrist, vice provost for academic personnel.
Anyone who wants to get in touch with Meyer or Obrist should copy firstname.lastname@example.org on emails, which may be seen more quickly by Woodward, who can help resolve issues or flag it for their attention. To set up meetings with Meyer or Obrist, contact Woodward.
Before joining UC ANR, Woodward worked in the private sector for Tactical Marketing, Philips and SearcherMagnet. She earned a bachelor's degree in English with a focus on creative writing from American River College.
Woodward is located on the second floor of the ANR building at 2nd Street in Davis in cubicle 208b. She can be reached at email@example.com and (530) 271-9296.
Alicia Baddorf joined the UC Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Program on Feb. 1 as the new sustainable supply chain coordinator. She succeeds Gwenael Engelskirchen, who is now SAREP's sustainable food and farming coordinator.
Baddorf brings over 10 years of sustainable agriculture and regional food systems experience to UC SAREP. Her research broadly aims to support farmers and ranchers in adopting more sustainable agricultural practices and assist communities in building equitable and healthy regional food systems.
She has experience with farms and food hubs, including educational program development, farming and the management of sales, community-supported agriculture programs, and marketing. With the Community Alliance with Family Farmers, she advised small-scale farmers finding right-fit technologies to expand their marketing opportunities.
She holds dual bachelor's degrees in sociology and French studies from the University of Delaware and is currently pursuing a master's degree in community development from UC Davis.
Baddorf is based at the UC ANR 2nd Street building and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Oker named soils and irrigation advisor for Kern County
Tobias Oker joined UCCE on Jan. 3 as a soils and irrigation advisor for Kern County.
Prior to joining UC ANR, Oker was an irrigation research engineer at the University of Georgia, Tifton campus for close to four years. At UGA, he collaborated with the state Natural Resources Conservation Service to update the Georgia Irrigation Guide. He also worked on a research project to develop crop water-use curves for apples, peaches, pecans and a grapefruit variety called muscadine.
Oker earned a Ph.D. from Kansas State University, where his doctoral research focused on Mobile Drip Irrigation, a novel technology with a demonstrated potential to improve irrigation efficiency in center pivot systems, the main irrigation method used in the Midwest.
Before attending K-State, he worked in Uganda at the National Agricultural Research Organization as a water management research and extension scientist for three years, and before that as a research assistant for two years.
He earned a M.S. in water science and engineering from IHE Delft, Institute for Water Education in the Netherlands and a B.S. in agricultural engineering from Makerere University in Uganda.
Oker is based at the UCCE office in Bakersfield and can be reached at email@example.com and (661) 868-6218 and on Twitter @TobiasOker.
Andrews named specialty crops advisor
Ellie Andrews joined UCCE on Jan. 3 as a specialty crops advisor for Sonoma, Marin and Napa counties.
Andrews enjoys the interdisciplinary nature of applied agricultural sciences and is excited to assist specialty crop growers with nutrient management, irrigation and integrated pest management. She can provide support for growers who want to implement practices that build soil health, such as organic matter amendment application, cover cropping, and strategies for reducing soil disturbance. She also can assist with variety selection, diversification, crop planning, and climate adaptation strategies.
Originally from Ohio, Andrews earned her bachelor's degree in field ecology with a focus on plant biology. During and after college, she worked on several small-scale certified organic farms where she gained experience with specialty crops such as mixed vegetables, greens, cut flowers, herbs, microgreens and culinary mushrooms.
While working directly with growers for Ohio State Extension, Andrews earned a master's degree in plant health management from Ohio State University, where the applied interdisciplinary degree taught her about integrated pest management, plant pathology and soil fertility.
She earned a Ph.D. in horticulture and agronomy at UC Davis. Her doctoral research focused on using organic matter amendments to improve nutrient cycling, soil-plant water dynamics, and soil microbial communities.
Andrews is based at the UCCE office in Santa Rosa and can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Benítez joins BFI, UC ANR as project scientist
Francisco Benítez Altuna joined UC ANR and Berkeley Food Institute on Jan. 3 as a project scientist.
Benítez will work with a stakeholder advisory group and collaborate on research with BFI-associated faculty on agroecological research and extension programs.
During his academic career, Benítez has developed a strong multidisciplinary background in food value chains. He is interested in understanding the challenges farmers face and the complex interactions between socioeconomic and context characteristics that shape the transition towards sustainable food value chains.
Benítez earned a Ph.D. at Wageningen University & Research in the Netherlands and master's degrees in agribusiness and rural development from the Georg-August University of Göttingen in Germany and the University of Talca in Chile.He earned an engineering degree in agro-industry from the National Polytechnic School in his hometown of Quito, Ecuador.
Benítez is based at the Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension Center in Parlier and can be reached at email@example.com.
Snell wins Young Range Professional Award
Laura Snell, UCCE director and livestock and natural resources advisor for Modoc County, received the Young Range Professional Award on Feb. 15 at the Society for Range Management conference in Boise.
“When Laura first came to California, she had not worked west of the Rocky Mountains, yet she swiftly gained and in-depth knowledge of the rangeland systems in Modoc County,” wrote David Lile, UCCE director and livestock and natural resources advisor for Lassen County in his nomination letter.
“The programmatic issues that have confronted Laura in Modoc County are not easy, they are not simple to solve, and are not for the timid,” Lile wrote. “Questions relating to wild horses, post-wildfire grazing on public land, groundwater management/policy, drought mitigation, and predators are defined by widely divergent views which are often emotionally charged. Despite this Laura has not wavered in her work to bring a science-based perspective to these topics and has not been dissuaded by those who might criticize applied science to promote their own agenda. Most importantly the science-based information that she provides is locally relevant and based on local/regional information that she has often been involved in collecting.”
Lile added, “Although she is the youngest (substantially) among the County Directors of the 11 northern region counties, at our request, she was appointed to serve as our regional representative to the statewide County Director Executive Committee.”
He noted that Snell also promoted a culture of professional collaboration by organizing the lntermountain Workgroup meeting and co-chairing a joint meeting of Cooperative Extension advisors and agents from California and Nevada.
The State FFA Executive Committee for the California Association of Future Farmers of America recently voted UC Farm Smart as a recipient of its Distinguished Service Award. The award is reserved for those who provide assistance of an outstanding nature to FFA, thus distinguishing the recipient from others who provide routine assistance to the FFA.
Farm Smart, an outreach program focused on agricultural literacy at UC ANR's Desert Research and Extension Center, has educated more than 168,000 people in the Imperial Valley and surrounding areas since its inception in 2001. Through the community-supported program, K-12 students and retirees who visit the desert in the winter are invited to tour Desert REC and learn about agriculture.
Stacey Amparano, Farm Smart program manager, will be presented the award at the 95th annual State FFA Leadership Conference on March 18 in Ontario.
- Author: Pamela Kan-Rice
The Alturas Sunrise Rotary donated $5000 towards the Modoc County Forever 4-H Endowment.
This endowment, established in 2018 amid state budget constraints, is intended to support the 4-H program in Modoc County for generations to come. Over 30% of the youth in Modoc County were served by 4-H programs in 2018.
Donations and memorial gifts are still being accepted for Modoc County Forever 4-H Endowment and will be matched until a goal of $20,000 is met.
“We are just over halfway, $10,935 and have a match for up to $20,000 so we will keep working on it this winter and spring,” said Laura Snell, UCCE Modoc County director.
A couple of months ago, the Principles of Community Committee unveiled a draft of the Principles of Community document at the May 20 town hall meeting.
The committee thought that a survey would be helpful in soliciting your feedback so that we may capture your thoughts, comments and suggestions into the final version.
Please read the draft document at http://ucanr.edu/About_ANR/Principles_of_Community.
We'll give you a few weeks to share your thoughts then the POC Committee will compile your comments and suggestions before we reconvene to revise our document.
Please submit your ideas through the ANR portal at http://ucanr.edu/About_ANR/Principles_of_Community/Comments_and_questions_are_welcome_648/ by Aug. 31, 2016. We welcome all your comments and suggestions.
Thank you in advance,
The UC ANR Principles of Community Committee
Respect, trust, accountability, shared vision, integrity and partnerships are needed to sustain a welcoming and inclusive ANR workplace environment.
UC ANR's Principles of Community Committee met for the first time on Sept. 29 in Davis to develop an outline for the Principles of Community. This document will serve as a guide for ANR employees to resolve and address conflict. In creating the Principles of Community, the committee strives to promote positive communications in the staff and academic personnel units, represent all organizational units, and provide examples of best practices.
Elizabeth Villalobos of Fresno County was elected chair and Tina Jordan of Davis was elected co-chair by the committee, which also includes Mary Blackburn, Emily LaRue, Chris Martinez, Laura Snell, Katherine Soule, Erin Spaniel, Jeff Tibayan and Terri White.
In 2012, ANR embarked on a journey to find out about the status of the working and learning environment across the entire UC system. As soon as the findings came in, ANR put into place an action plan.
This plan included regional workshops across the state to present results to all employees and to offer opportunities for employees to discuss the findings. One of the findings selected for discussion was the prevalence of “exclusionary behavior” experienced by employees. To help address this issue and to create a more welcoming and inclusive work environment, ANR leadership announced that a set of Principles of Community would be developed and used as a tool for education and training. To solicit input from the employees for the principles, 24 breakout sessions were held this year. At the end of each session, volunteers were recruited to form a statewide committee that would use the input from the employees to develop the Principles of Community for ANR.
After reviewing the charge, the Principles of Community Committee broke into groups to identify common themes derived from the 24 work environment breakout sessions held earlier this year.
The committee found that many ANR staff members viewed communication, perspectives, commonalities, age and generational differences to be both challenges and benefits for a diverse workforce. Respect, trust, accountability, shared vision, integrity, and partnerships were common values necessary to make a community and are characteristics needed to sustain a welcoming and inclusive ANR workplace environment. The committee also learned how ANR employees voiced their opinions on specific rights and responsibilities within the community such as communication, respect, a safe place, training, tools and work ethic, to name a few.
With the help from Emily LaRue, the committee's scribe, our team is on track to make history. We anticipate delivering a first draft of the principles and implementation plan by the end of the 2015 calendar year with a final draft due to ANR leadership in February 2016.
The committee plans to meet by conference call every two weeks. Feel free to contact any committee member with suggestions to share with the group because we want to capture the voices of ANR employees as we work to foster a more welcoming and inclusive work environment. Before we begin developing an implementation strategy, there will also be an opportunity for UC ANR members to provide comment and feedback.
The Principles of Community Committee wants you to know that we have heard what you have said and plan to develop a set of principles to help minimize the exclusionary behaviors staff has experienced in the past and move all to a positive working environment.
Author: Erin Spaniel (Thompson)
Laura Snell joined UCCE on March 2 as a livestock and natural resources advisor in Modoc County.
Prior to joining UCCE, Snell worked as a recruitment coordinator at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in Agriculture Education where she provided recruitment, retention and advising services to future and current students. She also organized the World Food Prize Nebraska Youth Institute and arranged logistics for domestic and international student trips. In 2013, she collaborated with UNL and The Nature Conservancy as an undergraduate intern coordinator for summer undergraduate research projects at the Niobrara Valley preserve, a cattle and bison ranch in northcentral Nebraska. From 2010 to 2013, Snell was a graduate research assistant/laboratory instructor/publications coordinator, conducting research in cattle grazing, nutrient cycling and greenhouse gas emission in pasture ecosystems. She taught the introduction range and forage class and published journal articles on her master's research. Prior to working in Nebraska, Snell was an environmental educator at the University of Georgia, teaching forest ecology, hiking, canoeing, navigation, anthropology, high ropes and team building to children grades 3-12 and adults at 4-H camp.
She earned a B.S. in water science and a M.S. in agronomy at UNL.
Snell is based in Alturas and can be reached at (530) 233-6328 and firstname.lastname@example.org.
Lindsay Jordan joined UCCE on February 17, 2015 as a viticulture area advisor in Madera, Merced & Mariposa counties.
Jordan's viticulture experience began as an undergraduate at UC Davis, where she majored in viticulture and enology and participated in undergraduate research investigating the hydraulic conductivity of Vitis xylem vessels. For her master's degree research, she led trials in Riesling vineyards in the Finger Lakes region of upstate New York that evaluated the effects of under-vine groundcovers on vine growth and fruit and wine quality to promote sustainable vineyard floor management. Jordan was the recipient of the Cornell Fredrick Dreer Award, which enabled her to travel to New Zealand and be a part of an under-vine management study lead by the Eastern Institute of Technology in Marlborough for the 2014 growing season. Jordan has worked at several commercial wineries for harvest in vineyard and lab technician positions, including Pernod Ricard Winemakers in Blenheim, New Zealand, and Mumm Napa and Quintessa in the Napa Valley before joining UC ANR.
Jordan earned a B.S. in viticulture and enology from UC Davis in 2011 and a M.S. in horticulture from Cornell University in 2014.
Jordan is based in Madera and can be reached at (559) 675-7879, Ext. 7209 and email@example.com.
Devii Rao joined UCCE on Feb. 23 as an area livestock and natural resources advisor for San Benito, Monterey and Santa Cruz counties.
Prior to joining UCCE, Rao had worked as a rangeland management specialist for Point Reyes National Seashore since 2012. She worked closely with 24 ranching families to identify priority issues and developed science-based solutions that allowed for both economically viable ranching operations and conservation of natural resources. Her outreach and education efforts for the Seashore have included presentations, coordination of conferences, and field tours. From 2008 to 2012, the Marin County native worked as a private consultant in range management conducting rangeland research; preparing grazing management, manure management, and monitoring plans for conservation lands with special resources; as well as outreach and education in the form of individual consultations with ranchers, presentations at conferences, and peer-reviewed publications.
She earned a B.A. in environmental studies with a minor in economics from UC Santa Cruz and an M.S. in range management from UC Berkeley.
Rao is based in Hollister and can be reached at (831) 637-5346, Ext. 14 and firstname.lastname@example.org.
The American Society for Enology and Viticulture has named Matthew Fidelibus, UC Cooperative Extension specialist in the Department of Viticulture and Enology at UC Davis, as the recipient of the 2015 ASEV Extension Distinction Award. Fidelibus will receive the award at the 66th ASEV National Conference in Portland, Ore., in June after delivering his presentation “Increasing Scope and Engagement in Extension.”
Fidelibus, who is based at the UC Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension Center in Parlier, conducts research aimed at reducing production costs and improving yields and quality for raisin, table, and wine grapes. His research interests include environmental physiology, plant growth regulation, and cultivar and clone selection. In addition to publishing more than 30 papers, his list of accomplishments includes serving as past-president of the Plant Growth Regulation Society of America and director of ASEV. He is presently an associate editor of the Journal of Plant Growth Regulation, the American Journal of Enology and Viticulture and PLOS ONE.
Fidelibus actively shares his research findings through on-farm visits, field days, seminars, articles in academic and trade journals, and through social networking media Facebook and Twitter.
The ASEV Extension Distinction Award recognizes outstanding contribution of enology or viticulture information through an extension program or the translation of novel research findings into commercially applicable tools for enologists or viticulturists.
Ariel Dinar, professor of environmental economics and policy at UC Riverside, has been named a 2015 Fellow of the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association (AAEA), the organization's most prestigious honor.
“Ariel Dinar is known internationally as an expert on the economics of water, and his recognition by the AAEA is well-deserved,” said Anil Deolalikar, founding dean of the UCR School of Public Policy. “His research on water pricing, water institutions, water quality control, water management modeling, agriculture and climate change, agricultural extension, and regional cooperation in water management has influenced policy changes at the local, state and national levels. We are delighted that the AAEA has recognized him for this well-deserved honor.”
Dinar said the ultimate goal of his research is to better understand the tradeoff between various policy interventions and which societal objectives could be achieved at the expense of others.
“In the field of water economics, we are just starting to understand the relationships between the different water consuming sectors, and the direct and indirect effects of various water and non-water policies on the entire economy,” he said. “However, understanding economy-wide effects of water scarcity and policies to address it are still a challenge left to be achieved.”
According to the AAEA, the primary consideration for the selection of Fellows is “continuous contribution to the advancement of agricultural or applied economics as defined by the Vision Statement. Achievements may be in research, teaching, extension, administration, and/or other contributions to public or private sector decision-making.”
Read the entire UCR press release at http://ucrtoday.ucr.edu/27414.
Master Gardeners win international award
The UC Master Gardener Program in Sonoma County was recently recognized with the International Master Gardener Search for Excellence award for their Garden Sense program. The project placed first in the Community Service category in the program recognizing Extension Master Gardener volunteer work in the United States, Canada and South Korea.
Garden Sense, a partnership developed between the Master Gardeners and the Sonoma County Water Agency in 2013, trains consultants in lawn conversion, landscape water management, irrigation systems, site assessment, low-water-use plants and sustainable garden practices. The volunteer consultants visit Sonoma County homeowners to show them how to conserve water by creating a climate-appropriate garden that is healthy, sustainable and environmentally sound.
“In our first year of operation we estimate water savings as a result of the program at 6 acre feet,” wrote Mimi Enright, Master Gardener Program coordinator in Sonoma County, in her blog post about the award.