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Beat Practices Hub



Sharing "Best (Extension) Practices"

The "Best (Extension) Practices" hub highlights examples of good practice within UC ANR.

Who does it well?

Examples of good practice.

Materials to help you do it too.


Help us help you. Send suggestions on topics, "skill gurus", examples of good practice and/or simple practical resource materials or links.  


Examples of success

On this page



Field Days   Funding models   Newsletters



Blogs and Twitter













Before developing a new skill or communication channel .....



  There are lots of tools to help you communicate.

  Before investing time, ask yourself

"Who is your audience and how do they get their information?"

"Can I feed my information through an existing channel?"


Funding models

As more traditional sources of support shift, a number of alternate funding models (some around for a while) are becoming increasingly  important.

Statewide programs have a number of CES and academic positions that are at least in part funded through grants (PSEP, Western IPM Center, 4-H, NPI, CalNat). What’s ‘different’ is that we are increasing the number of academic and program staff positions that are located throughout the state and not centrally funded.

(There are other examples of different and innovative funding. Please let us (Wendy P or Mark B) know positions missed, so they can be included.)

funding models

Advisors and Specialists: 

Urban Agriculture/Food Systems Advisor (supported through the County Waste Reduction Program). Santa Clara; Contact: Sheila Barry

Environmental Hort Advisor (Funded through County tipping fees) San Joaquin; Contact Brent Holtz

Area Fire Advisor (Funded through grants). Humboldt; Contact: Yana Valachovic

Nutrient Management and Soil Quality Advisors (Split positions - funded by UC ANR with NRCS) ; Counties Fresno and Stanislaus Contact: Wendy Powers

Organic Agriculture Specialist (Funded through Campus) UC Santa Cruz; Contact: Wendy Powers

Watershed Specialist (Funded with UC Merced): UC Merced; Contact: Wendy Powers

Table Grapes CE Advisor (Funded with CA Table Grapes Commission) Tulare/Kings County with support to Kern; Contact Wendy Powers

Other Academic positions

NPI Academic Coordinators (Funded through grants) Multiple positions; located in Berkeley; Contact: Lorrene Ritchie

Other Programs have advisors and academics funded through grants: including 

  • UC IPM
  • CalNat
  • 4-H

Community Educators

County funding

UC 4-H and UC Master Gardener Community Educators. (Funded by the County) Stanislau. Contact: Roger Duncan 

UC MG community educator (County funding?) San Bernardino Contact : Janet Hartin

DREC Farm Smart Educator Position (Imperial; Valley: community college; county support); DREC, Imperial Valley; Contact: Jairo Diaz-Ramirez

Other models

Community Educators for soil health. (funded through CDFA) Counties: 10 total; Contacts: Doug Parker and Wendy Powers




Social Media - Blogs and Twitter




Who does it well? Rose Hayden-Smith ; Susie KocherFaith Kearns ; Theresa Becchetti

Examples of good practice.

Note: People often integrate Twitter, Facebook etc. with a blog.

- Raising awareness and sharing information and stories.

  • Blog: Food Observer (Rose Hayden Smith) > 1 m impressions with the associated Twitter.


- Using Twitter, etc. to drive people to content


  • UC Rangeland (Theresa Becchetti) While currently not a large number of users, it demonstrates a promising way to get users directly to relevant content.

Need indications of Subscribers? Shares? Hits? etc.

 Materials to help you do it too.  Pending development (Rose H-S)


  Social media is an area where (depending on your audience) you should definitely consider feeding your information through an existing social media initiative.



Field Days


Who does it well? Brad Hanson plus many others

Examples of good practice. UC Weed Field Day

Materials to help you do it too. WSARE

Field Day Check list (UC ANR)



Who does it well? Steve Elliott

Examples of good practice. Examples

Materials to help you do it too. Link




Who does it well? UC IPM ; David Doll

Examples of good practice.


Materials to help you do it too.

  • Manual for developing an on-line repository



Who does it well? Steve Elliott; Petr Kosina; Ray Lucas ; Rachel Elkins; Rob Broadhurst

Examples of good practice.


Materials to help you do it too.

  • Key: Meet an interest, have useful information, be easily discoverable.
  • Take better Videos Fact sheet
  • Videos 101 short manual