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Posts Tagged: UC CalFresh

Three teams and 14 individuals win ANR STAR awards

VP Humiston has announced the winners of the 2015-16 UC ANR Staff Appreciation and Recognition (STAR) awards, which recognize and reward outstanding individual and team performance of Agriculture and Natural Resources staff.

STAR awards allow managers to nominate staff who demonstrate exceptional performance, creativity, organizational abilities, work success and teamwork. The nominations were reviewed by a panel, which made recommendations to me.

The following are the names of the 2015/2016 ANR STAR Award recipients and comments from those nominating them.

Fourteen individuals won awards:

  • Steve Dreistadt, Statewide Integrated Pest Management Program – “We at UC IPM, and those throughout ANR who have worked with him, respect and value Steve's integrity and commitment to communicating high-quality scientific information to solve pest problems.”
  • Janie Duran and Marci Holmes-Baker, Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension Center/Lindcove Research and Extension Center – “During the past 14 months, they have assisted in the hiring and training of three business officers for Lindcove REC in addition to their many responsibilities at KARE, clearly demonstrating exceptional service and performance. Their organizational procedures have been adopted by the new staff at Lindcove REC, leading to greater efficiency in tracking accounts and recharging researchers.”
  • Brook Gamble, California Naturalist Program – “Brook combines a broad understanding of the program with the attention to detail of a copy editor and the creativity of a graphic artist. Brook's insistence on quality, knowledge of the field and sheer volume of work make her an invaluable asset to the California Naturalist Program.”

 

  • Leah Haynes, Master Gardener Program in UCCE Ventura County – “Her work in Ventura County is known throughout the state for excellence and high achievement. Ventura County Master Gardeners are ‘On Fire' with activity and excitement – Leah is a big part of that.”
  • Allison Keaney, 4-H and Youth Development in UCCE Marin County – “Allison formed and led the growth and expansion of our 4-H in the Classroom program… The result has been a two-fold increase in the number of youth participating. She has become a leader for the UCCE Marin team by creating cross-discipline programming that leads to broader reach and greater impact for all programs combined.”
  •  Melissa LaFreniere, UCCE in San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties – “Her contribution to our nutrition education team is invaluable, and she is always working behind the scenes to suggest and implement the most efficient way possible to deliver our programming. She is an exemplary employee with exceptional creativity, organizational and teamwork skills.”

  • Chinh Lam, Integrated Pest Management Program – “Chinh's greatest skills are his ability to listen to input without becoming defensive, analyze the changes that should come from them, and do the work to make those changes happen. I appreciate his forward thinking and exceptional team and project management skills.”
  • Kimberly Rodegerdts, Risk & Safety Services – “Kim has implemented a new program to centralize and consolidate the monitoring and management of background checks and criminal record data… I've heard many comments praising Kim's clear and helpful instructions, her quick response to any questions, and an appreciation of the volume of work she has accomplished.”

 

  • Cole Smith, UCCE in Santa Clara County – “Cole has exceeded the expectations of TAC and UCCE for the compost program by developing a strong and diverse volunteer force and consistently delivering effective workshops on composting and waste reduction. His passion and interest in expanding the program has contributed to its notoriety and success.”
  • Heidi Von Geldern, Contracts & Grants – “Heidi is committed to helping our customers and improving our team to assist UC ANR. She provides outstanding customer services. We rely on Heidi for her calm assessment of problematic situations and her directed strategies to resolve them.”
  • Aubrey White, Sustainable Agriculture Research & Education Program (SAREP) – “Her persistence, creative energy, and professionalism was instrumental in gaining us a new website that has garnered positive feedback from our stakeholders for appearance and accessibility of information. She has created communications products that are exceptionally effective.”
  • David White, Human Resources-Affirmative Action – “David went above and beyond in collecting and analyzing data in response to a comprehensive USDA NIFA review. He developed creative formulas to improve the required reports, and worked long hours to meet short deadlines.”
  • May Woo, UCCE San Mateo/San Francisco – “As a nutrition educator, May maintains the highest quality standards and commitment to excellence. May Woo has been one of those bright stars that has quietly provided stability and guidance to UC CalFresh and UCCE San Mateo/San Francisco counties over the years.”

 

Three teams were recognized:

  • Asian Citrus Psyllid Public Education Campaign Team: Jeannette Warnert, Tyler Ash, Myriam Grajales-Hall, Alberto Hauffen, Ray Lucas, Elizabeth Grafton-Cardwell and Mark Hoddle – The campaign successfully helped convey to California citrus tree owners the threat posed by ACP and the steps they can take to mitigate the hazards. UC ANR's Strategic Communications team thoughtfully brought together several key resources and components to execute an outreach plan, resulting in positive, quantifiable results.
  • UC CalFresh Nutrition Education Program in Placer/Nevada counties: Rosemary Carter, Olivia Kosten, Carrie Yarwood, Megan Thompson, Michele Fisch and Annette Cosgrove – The team has exceeded expectations by integrating physical activity and reaching new audiences such as afterschool youth programs. More than 2,600 low-income school children receive nutrition education, and more than 10,000 adults learn about nutrition through workshops, newsletters and social media.
  • UC CalFresh Nutrition Education Program in Central Sierra: Wendy West, Gretchen Birtwhistle, Hector Ochoa, Natalie Alfaro-Perez, Monica Drazba, Emily Metzger, Stacy Arhontes and Sandra Sturzenacker – Team achievements include delivering nutrition education to underserved, Spanish-speaking clientele in Lake Tahoe; collaborating with Boys and Girls Clubs in El Dorado County to provide physical activity resources and training utilizing the CATCH program; and establishing a Nutrition Education Partnership with FoodCorps.

The STAR winners received their awards at the Special Staff Meeting and Recognition Event June 16 at the UC ANR building in Davis.

 

 

Names in the News

Mike Janes
Janes to lead ANR Strategic Communications

Dear Colleagues,

Please join me in welcoming our new Strategic Communications Director to ANR.  Mike Janes comes to us from the Sandia National Laboratory in Livermore where he has been the Communications and Media Relations Officer for over ten years. His extensive experience with communicating science to a wider audience is a skill that will greatly benefit ANR. 

As you all know, we are heavily involved with many of the President's Initiatives – Food, Carbon Neutrality and Mexico. In support of these initiatives, we have an opportunity to share the research and program delivery stories from our academics all over the state of California. Mr. Janes is arriving at a critical time to help us leverage these opportunities, and showcase the exceptional work of ANR.

Mr. Janes also led the lab's Diversity and Inclusion Action Planning Team, and we look forward to having him engage with our own efforts to ensure that ANR has a welcoming and inclusive work environment. Earlier in his career, Mr. Janes worked as the Media Relations Director for the American Institute of Architects, and as the Senior Media Relations Manager for Special Olympics International.

Mr. Janes is an Air Force veteran and has an M.A in strategic communication and leadership and a B.A. in broadcast communications. He will be based in Davis and starts on February 2, 2015.

Sincerely,

Barbara Allen-Diaz
Vice President

George Zhuang
Zhuang named UCCE viticulture advisor

Shijian (George) Zhuang joined UCCE on Jan. 2 as a viticulture advisor in Fresno County. His background is in Viticulture and Enology, Food Science and Horticultural Science. Zhuang's research focuses on wine, raisin and table grapes.

Prior to joining UCCE, Zhuang was a viticulture intern at E & J Gallo Winery where he worked on several research projects that included precision viticulture and differential irrigation. This experience provided him a greater understanding about viticulture and vineyard management in the Central Valley and the needs and future challenges of the grape industry, such as limited water availability, labor shortage and invasive pest species. From 2009 to 2012, Zhuang was a master graduate research assistant at Michigan State University where he participated in research projects such as experimental trials of new varieties (NE 10-20), early leaf removal on pinot noir, foliar nitrogen application on chardonnay and crop and canopy management on concord grapes. Zhuang also worked on canopy microclimate management and crop load manipulation in order to improve fruit quality. During his research study, Zhuang gained skills in the analysis of different chemical components, such as anthocyanins and phenolics, in grapes and wines as well as grape flavor chemistry components such as methoxypyrazines.

Zhuang earned a B.S. in viticulture and enology from China Agricultural University, Beijing, China, and a M.S. in horticulture from Michigan State University. His master's thesis focused on the impact of viticultural practices (crop load and canopy management) on fruit quality of cabernet franc grapevines grown under cool climate conditions.

Zhuang can be reached at (559) 241-7506 and gzhuang@ucdavis.edu.

Jim Downing
Downing named Cal Ag editor

Jim Downing is California Agriculture journal's new executive editor. Downing, who joined UC on Jan. 12, is familiar with UC Cooperative Extension from his years covering agriculture, energy and climate policy for the Sacramento Bee. He even read California Agriculture as an undergrad at Cornell University.

Until joining UC ANR, he was principal in Jim Downing Consulting, where he wrote and produced publications on science, natural resources, policy and management for clients such as the Nature Conservancy, the Water Education Foundation and the Union of Concerned Scientists. Besides his Bee reporting, Downing has professional experience in agriculture, with international fellowships in water reuse and reclamation and in rural and urban water quality. He has two master's degrees from UC Berkeley, one in civil and environmental engineering and the other in energy and resources.

In his new position, Downing will oversee California Agriculture's content, quality, accuracy and strategic direction, planning and producing issues that speak to the journal's educated and cross-disciplinary readers.

Downing can be reached at jdowning@ucanr.edu and (530) 750-1352.

UCCE nutrition honored in Kings County

The UC CalFresh Nutrition Education Program in Kings County was honored as the Most Outstanding Support Agency at the 2014 Kings Prevention Awards. UC CalFresh community educator Sue Lafferty and UC CalFresh program representative Denise Cuendett accepted the award at a breakfast program on Dec. 4 in Hanford. The Kings Prevention Awards were presented by a local coalition called the Kings Partnership for Prevention.

 

Posted on Sunday, January 18, 2015 at 11:33 AM
 
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