ANR Employees
University of California
ANR Employees

2016 Call for Positions

On December 14, 2016 UC ANR Vice President Humiston announced the the release of 26 CE positions from the 2016 call for a new round of hiring over the next two years. This new release continues the commitment for hiring to exceed projected turnover, thus achieving the goal of academic growth. And, as funding becomes available, UC ANR will consider additional positions.

2016 approved CE positions

January 12, 2016 solicited proposals for Cooperative Extension (CE) advisor and specialist positions in the ANR Update. The call identified positions for strengthening and expanding the UC ANR network to address programmatic gaps and emerging needs. Below this public webpage displays all 138 new CE position proposals (there is a search tool to assist in finding proposals).

The online submittal process was open from January 12 – May 5 (5:00 PM) to allow as much time as possible for internal consultation and external input from UC ANR stakeholders in all program areas. Submissions were accepted from the following official submitter groups:

The Review Phase was completed May 5 – August 1. All proposals were reviewed. The program area and unit reviews were conducted by the Program Teams; geographic groups of County/Multicounty Partnership and Research and Extension Center Directors, and the UC ANR affiliated colleges and school. These groups prioritized and provided rationale for the position proposals under their purview. This input was used to inform UC ANR Program Council’s recommendations and ultimately the UC ANR Vice President’s decisions. More information about the review process is available in the review orientation.

The public comment period was open Jan. 12 through July 11, 2016. Comments can be viewed by clicking the position links below. Comments were reviewed by the review groups, Program Council and the Vice President.

Relevant documents:

If you have any questions, contact Katherine Webb-Martinez at (510) 987-0029 or


2016 URS Call for Positions

This proposal has been formally submitted for the 2016 cycle.

Position Details

041 Area Small Farms Advisor

Area Small Farms Advisor will conduct a problem-solving research and outreach program in small-scale production of vegetable crops, berry crops, and other specialty crops in San Joaquin and Stanislaus Counties.   Small farms dominate the demographics of these two counties representing 74% of the 7,723 farms.  These small farms supply fresh produce and specialty crops directly to the numerous certified Farmer’s Markets within the San Francisco Bay Area as well as large urban cities within the San Joaquin Valley.  Many of these producers are ethnically diverse and represent an underserved segment of our clientele base. 

The Advisor will address issues affecting the productivity of small farms including soils, irrigation, crop nutrition, organic farming, and integrated pest management through collaborations with other advisors, specialists, nonprofit organizations, and private industry. The Advisor will address critical issues for small farms related to economics and marketing, compliance with food safety standards, and regulatory issues of labor, OSHA, air quality, pesticides, and herbicide and nitrate use regulations that affect the economic viability of small-scale farm families. 

Proposed Location/Housing

San Joaquin County

Proposed Area of Coverage

Northern San Joaquin Valley, San Joaquin and Stanislaus Counties


Associated Documents



These small farms positions have been important in helping agriculture explore and test out new and emerging crops. This crops that are grown initially on small scales, need to be scientifically evaluated and have the technical aspects of their production practices worked out and documented. There is great potential for technological transfer when working with smaller producers who do not have extensive training and experience.
Posted Jun 11, 2016 3:44 PM by Maxwell Norton
Having served as the small farms advisor in San Joaquin County, I appreciate the need for UC working with this group of growers. They are very adaptable in the use of available land that is not economic for large scale producers. Many produce specialty crops that are sold directly to consumers and they are not able to command the attention of Pest Control Advisors or fertilizer sales representatives for assistance. A small farms advisor in San Joaquin/Stanislaus Counties would be able to provide access to new methods and materials to make many of these producers more competitive. Many are transitioning to organic production to obtain access to the high value markets in the Bay Area and a UC advisor could be very helpful with the transfer of ideas and technology that would make them more competitive.
Posted Jul 7, 2016 1:25 PM by Benny Fouche
It is very important for the UCANR to take affirmative action to address the needs of the underserved clientele in San Joaquin County. The Hmong, Mien, Hispanic and African American farmers need the expertise which is easily available to other farmers but difficult for them. This advisor can taylor education and research to meet their needs. For example recent projects delivering food safety education were highly successful due to extra efforts the team made to seek out participants and create materials in appropriate languages and delivery methods. There are many unique opportunities for research which will help them be successful. Of all the small farm positions in the state, this is a very high priority. They have been without this position for 7 years.
Posted Jul 7, 2016 6:16 PM by Deborah Giraud
As Agricultural Commissioner in San Joaquin County and through my work in Stanislaus County I have been involved in regulating small growers through the Certified Farmers Markets as well as other programs involving the production of diversified fruits and vegetables. I have seen first hand the importance of there being available knowledge of production techniques that are needed for many of these growers to be economically viable. I have seen the need for there being available knowledge in the save use of pesticides as well as food safety.

In many cases here is a huge need to make sure grower especially thos from SE Asia understand the agricultural cultural differences that exists between the two areas. In order to safely produce and market their products this position would play a vital role in helping these growers to succeed and meet the regulatory requirements that will help them to become an economic and culturally important part if the agricultural community.
Posted Jul 9, 2016 10:07 AM by Timothy Pelican
This position would extend UCANR's extension and research efforts to assist small-scale growers in the Central Valley. There is great potential to collaborate with the small farms advisors in Yolo/Sacramento/Solano Counties, and Fresno/Tulare Counties to reach similar clientele who are currently not being served by ANR programs. I see this position as very high priority, as there is currently only one small farms advisor in the San Joaquin Valley and a great opportunity to increase ANR programs for small farms in this area. San Joaquin and Stanislaus Counties have a population of growers with a large need for assistance from extension programs, especially for growers with language barriers that increase the difficulty of compliance with food safety, pesticide, and groundwater regulations. I would welcome the opportunity to collaborate with a small farms advisor on extension efforts for similar clientele groups.
Posted Jul 9, 2016 1:35 PM by Ruth Dahlquist-Willard
Increasing access and visibility of healthy food choices (e.g. fresh fruits and vegetables) has been shown to improve the nutritional choices of youth and adults. Healthy Food Access and Food Security have been identified by the Obesity and Chronic Disease Prevention Taskforce, Healthy San Joaquin Collaborative, and Hunger Taskforce as priority issues to be addressed over the next 3-5 years in San Joaquin County. This includes support for and expansion of community supported agricultural projects (e.g. Boggs Tract Community Farm, Black Urban Farmer’s Association and other small/large community and school gardens) as well as Farmer’s Markets throughout the county. Additionally, the Farm to Fork/Farm to School movements are gaining momentum in San Joaquin and Stanislaus Counties. The education and applied research generated by this position would contribute significantly to all of these efforts. There would be numerous interrelated benefits for both our communities and the producers involved e.g. knowledge of new and existing production methods for small-scale farming that are safe, effective and more profitable; research and production focused on a variety of new and existing fruits and vegetables; collaboration on the development of a diversified food systems with a focus on healthy foods; improved sustainability of successful small-scale farming operations; research and education on the cultural preferences/traditions of underserved, minority populations; and, definitely, increased “healthy” food access and improved food security for residents in both counties, especially low-income seniors and families.
Posted Jul 10, 2016 11:41 AM by Anna Martin
This position is extremely important moving forward as the challenges facing our small growers due to a variety of new rules and regulations will only increase in the future. The Small crops advisor has not only been helpful in advising many small growers from throughout our county, but they have provided the critical research on a large array of specialty crops. To maintain our growing specialty crop industry, we believe this position is vital as we move forward to address the challenges for the current and next generation of small farmers in our county. We urge you to fill this position immediately.
Bruce Blodgett
Posted Jul 11, 2016 10:51 AM by San Joaquin Farm Bureau Federation
Our small farm growers in San Joaquin County would benefit greatly from the expertise and advice of an Area Small Farms advisor. Small scale growers are often unfamiliar with the latest regulations, food safety practices, and technological advances that may help their operations. Placing an advisor with experience in this area would greatly enhance our small farm growers opportunities to be an important part of our ag economy.
Posted Jul 11, 2016 1:01 PM by Gary Barton - Chair, San Joaquin County Agricultural Advisory Board
The position of small farms farm advisor in San Joaquin county is very important to help the specialty crop growers implement new strategies that will enhance crop production and steward the natural resources of land and water in the process. As many of the small farms become more specialized in crop diversity and explore more valuable markets, they will be challenged by their consumers to provide proof that their farming practices meet their goals of sustainability and environmental stewardship. These small farmers will need the help of the UC small farms farm advisor to help ensure they are implementing the most innovative practices that consumers are demanding, which will can only be developed by cooperative efforts between farm advisors and growers.
Posted Jul 11, 2016 1:04 PM by Ben Duesterhaus
As a San Joaquin County Supervisor, I have the distinct pleasure of working closely with Brent Holtz at the UC Cooperative Extension and the members of his staff. They are invaluable to the growers in the region with their expertise and willingness to provide critical information whenever requested or needed.
My district covers over 54% of the County and in addition to three of the seven cities, I have by far the largest representation of farmers and ranchers. Consequently, I am very active with the farm community including the Farm Bureau. I attend all their Board meetings and always appreciate Brent’s reports on what is happening at UC Davis. Our partnership with the UC Extension, whereby the County provides office space in our Robert Cabral Agricultural Center in addition to clerical and vehicle support, ensures the best strategies to increase our growers’ productivity.
Mr. Holtz is requesting the position titled Small Farms Advisor for San Joaquin County. Our County has 106 certified small producing farms on three to five acre parcels that would rely on this Advisor to assist them with issues unique to their operations.
Consequently, I give my total support to Mr. Holtz’s proposal and believe the position would be a tremendous benefit to our agricultural economy.

Chuck Winn, Supervisor 4th District
San Joaquin County
Posted Jul 11, 2016 2:38 PM by San Joaquin County Supervisor Chuck Winn
According to the 2012 Census of Agriculture Highlights, of the 2.1 million farms in the United States, 88 percent of them are small family farms. The image of the American framer is becoming very diverse. Hispanic and Asian farmers are up 21 percent since 2007 and woman farmers were at 14 percent in 2012. Basically, the old archetype of the farmer is becoming a rare commodity. Most of these small farms are run by grandparents. If we want to continue running small farms that are in our community then we need to have resources, education, research, and support from a small farms advisor. This would allow small farms to become successful and be sustainable at the same time. Let’s face it, most of today’s youth don’t have a clue were there food comes from; they can identify most Corporate America logos but have great difficulty identifying their local plants. A small farmer, growing a diversity of open pollinated fruits and vegetables would mean true food security. Many of these small farmers in San Joaquin County are ethnically diverse and need more support than the large scale farmer, so why not have a dedicated advisor to support them?
Posted Jul 11, 2016 3:37 PM by Shirley Alvarez
I am surprised that this gap has existed in the Central Valley since Mr. Fouche retired as Small Farms Advisor. We are told time and again by mainstream media and agriculture/economic experts that California’s Central Valley feeds the country (and many parts of the world); how is it then that there exists this huge gap between Sacramento County and Fresno County where there is no Cooperative Extension support for the small farmer? Growing up in Stanislaus County and having worked on many farms I can comfortably say that this area is pretty special in terms of still maintaining family farms and an increasingly diverse pool of small farmers. We have a large Latino/a, Asian, and Middle Eastern population that is becoming more entrepreneurial and growing food is one field in which we see their presence. Women, especially, are becoming more aware of the role a healthy and natural diet plays in the well-being of their family and I’ve seen the increased interest in urban and community gardens in larger centers like Stockton and Modesto. This follows a national trend.

I sincerely hope that we get a Small Farms Advisor in the area soon. Not only to serve and support the existing and up-and-coming small farmers, but also to provide guidance and assistance to those interested in moving into a more sustainable form of growing food; be it community gardens, home gardens, food cooperatives, etc. The Small Farms Advisor, I believe, plays a very special and crucial role in this intersection of food security, food sovereignty, marketing, technical expertise, community engagement, and agriculture renewal.
Posted Jul 11, 2016 3:56 PM by Alejandra Juarez
My family is one of many small Hmong farmers in San Joaquin County. As a small farmer we believe there is a great need for a small farm advisor. My family and I am a little more fortunate because we are fluent in English and are computer literacy. Which make searching for help with crops and irrigating online a little easier. On the other hand, we have many elder Hmong farmer who are not fluent in English nor computer literacy that are struggling everyday in their fields. For example, my uncle who is very limited in English will ask my husband every year how to grow different crops on his filed and we will attempt to help him but it doesn't always work. A small farm advisor is crucial because we need someone to help direct us on how to obtain special certifications to us pesticides or what type of fertilizers to use on the many different crops we are growing in our fields. Best practices on irrigating our crops. Being a small farmer is costly and time consuming, having a small farm advisor available to us here in San Joaquin County will give us an opportunity to learn how to keep up with our farm works and decrease the costs so that we can continue farming for many more years to come.
Posted Jul 12, 2016 1:58 PM by Houa Lee Lo

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