- Author: Deanne Meyer
Days are cooler and rain may be coming. Fires continue to burn. We are keeping good thoughts for our first responders and everyone in these areas living with smoke, evacuations and uncertainty.
Last week Program Council reviewed the UC Master Gardener Program. The review encompassed 10 years of work including major budget cuts, a global pandemic, and incredible growth in volunteers. Kudos to the review committee and Kit Alviz and Leyla Marandi of Program Planning and Evaluation. Program Council appreciated the detailed analyses and contributions of information from many sources.
Did you know the UC Master Gardener Program started in 1980? The current volunteer roster exceeds 6,000 people. Sustainable landscaping, food gardening and community well-being are key focus areas. Workshop topics cover everything from food security to water conservation. Understanding the right plant and the right place is increasingly more important with our changing climate, unpredictable precipitation and scarce water resources. Plants improve our well-being through beauty, shade and improved soil characteristics. The Master Gardener website is a fabulous resource! It's a great resource if you need information or if you're just curious about the program. Give it a read!
Goings and comings. As the calendar turned to September, we thanked Katherine Soule who served as Assistant Vice Provost of UC Cooperative Extension for the last two years. We appreciate all her efforts in that role. Just a few days later, we wished David Bunn a happy retirement. Both David and Katherine worked closely with County Directors. Their energies, efforts and enthusiasm were appreciated. The first Friday CD/REC Director meeting in September was informative and a great information exchange occurred.
Leadership development is important for our organization. Keith Nathaniel is working with Western Extension Leadership Development Class XI. Oli Bachie and Jennifer Heguy are interns from UC ANR. Thank you, Keith, for your leadership. Betsy Karle is on the last part of her her 17 month leadership development in the California Ag Leadership Program's Class 51. Congratulations to Anne Megaro for being accepted into Class 52! I applaud everyone for continuing their leadership journey.
We continue to grow! Welcome Hanif Robert Houston, digital communications Alameda; Chun Fung Yu and Stephen Dampier, IT services; blank assistants Maximus Mendez, Kearney and Todd Wenstrom San Diego; Jose Pax Villegas and Jackson Dias, Fresno Madera MCP; Community Education Specialists Sierra Washington, Plumas and Sierra counties; Julie Salomonson, Ventura; Braulio Rodriguez Villalobos, Ana Mora Camacho, Coral Franco, Fresno and Madera MCP; Kathleen Carter and Alfonso Mota, Sierra Nevada; Nichol Santisteven, Santa Clara; Arlene Silva, Imperial; Tara Kelly, San Mateo; and Brandon Frost, Shasta. We are happy you have all joined the ANR family!
Thank you for all you do for California! Together we effect change for California, and beyond.