May 2011

May 2011

Forest Landowners Association Names Mike Bondi 2011 Extension Forester of the Year

Please help us congratulate Mike Bondi, who was named 2011 Extension Forester of the Year by the Forest Landowners Association, headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia.

Mike is currently serving as the Staff Chair and Extension Forester in Clackamas County, as well as the Interim Superintendent of the North Willamette Agricultural Research and Extension Center.  Mike has been with OSU Extension since 1978, and is well known for his forest landowner and Christmas tree Extension programs. 

The Extension Forester of the Year Award recognizes a forester who has been in practice at least five years and is dedicated to the advancement of forest landowner education and outreach, focusing on private landowners. 

The past five years this award has gone to Extension Foresters at Mississippi State University (three times), Oklahoma State University, and the University of Tennessee.  Looks like Mike has broken the Southern stranglehold on this award!  The Forest Landowners Association (FLA) is a national organization serving the many needs of America’s private forest landowners.  Since 1941 FLA has provided its members, who own and operate more than 40 million acres of forest land in 48 states, with education, information, and national grassroots advocacy.  Mike will be honored at the FLA national convention to be held in Williamsburg, Virginia in June.

Mike Bondi

Looking Over Our Shoulder

I had an interesting experience recently. A week or so ago I spent the evening in Portland behind the one-way mirrors of the focus group rooms in the OSU Food Innovation Center.  We were observing two focus groups discussing their impressions about Oregon Extension.  One group included people with some experience with Extension programs, and the other included people with no recognition of Extension at all.  As always these kinds of "looking over your shoulder" opportunities can be fascinating. 

In the "affiliated" group, their experience was across the gamut from an individual who had been in an Extension program "some time ago" to a currently active Master Gardener. The "non-affiliated" group was interesting because it included people not just off the street looking for the honorarium and light dinner, they were people who are active in community efforts, just not Extension.

Both groups were asked—separately, of course—what they thought of when they heard the name Oregon State Extension.   Reactions in the affiliated group were singular as they talked about the areas of Extension each of them knew about, similar to the story of the group of blind people grabbing parts of an elephant.   On the other hand, the unaffiliated group started focusing on how they thought the University might reach out to people, using what they knew most about OSU—teaching.  They began to describe ways that people could get access to new learning programs. Some were versions of what they might have seen in other places, such as UC Extension in California that is mostly face-to-face continuing education. Most of the concern they expressed was how you would get "all the way" to Corvallis if you lived in Portland.  When later in the session they were asked what they would say if they knew that "Extension had faculty members and a presence in every county in the state?," the response was, "Impressive."

Later in the evening, when the groups were exposed to the concept of the Centennial celebration of 100-years of Extension in Oregon, the response was underwhelming at best. Neither group was much intrigued by the idea.  Both seemed to wonder more about the future than the past.  It seemed to be a classic, "What have you done for me lately?" response.

Interestingly, however, both groups were more positively disposed to the Centennial section of the new Extension Web site. Two factors seemed to surface.  One is they saw the Centennial materials in context, with photos and description.  The other is the issue of access vs. distribution.  If we try to send them information about the history of Extension, they might not be so receptive.  If, however, we provide a place to get access to the information as they see fit, that is more of interest. 

These are just my personal observations from the far side of the one-way mirror.  It will take much more in depth analysis to really figure out what some of the ideas raised really mean to us. There were two more sessions after Portland, in Bend and Medford.  We are now assembling the input from all sites and plan to use the information to frame ways to raise awareness of Extension.  Rule Number One in any communication effort like this is "Know Your Audience." That’s what this is all about: Following Rule Number One.     

Dave King
Associate Provost
Outreach and Engagement

Dave King, Associate Provost, Outreach and Engagement

Making Sure Items in Extension Catalog are Updated and Accessible

Mark Anderson-Wilk, Publishing Leader, EESC

EESC is aware that some people have had difficulty finding items in the OSU Extension Publications and Multimedia Catalog. We are developing a new catalog that will provide improved and expanded search and browse options.

Several issues have been involved in the recent problems:

  • Publication files have been migrated to a different server that will provide improved access, but this temporarily created some technical errors that are being fixed.
  • Like other Extension publishing offices across the country, we are working with authors to ensure that out-of-date materials are removed from the catalog.
  • The existing catalog system is very old in software terms. We are experiencing more errors and technical difficulties as this aging system approaches the end of its life.

The great news is we are well on the way to a new, improved catalog! The catalog will feature more options for browsing and searching, easy-to-use “you might also be interested in” links, and much, much more. We’ll provide more information as this project progresses.

In the meantime, you can help us ensure that people can find current catalog items and that they don’t use out-of-date information.

If you provide links to OSU Extension publications on your webpage, please make sure they are working and linking to the current version of the publication. The easiest and most accurate way to identify the correct, most recent URL is to search for a publication in the catalog and copy the “view it now” URL.

If a publication no longer appears in the catalog, most likely it has been removed because the content was reviewed and determined out-of-date. We have attempted to contact authors regarding this. You should remove links to these publications from your website. If you would like a publication on the topic to be available again, you could consider proposing a revision to the publication (propose here:

Thank you for your understanding and your help!

Meet the Extension Community Vitality Working Group

The Extension Community Vitality Working Group helps you understand how your local economy and populations have changed in recent decades and what might be new economic opportunities for your community. We do applied studies on such things as the economic contribution of particular industries in your county or region, and how well positioned your labor force is to fill future jobs in your county. We also provide selected program evaluation services.

Community Economists Bruce Sorte and Mallory Rahe specialize in economic impact analyses. Recent projects include measuring the economic impact of childcare in Oregon, policy change on local businesses, and critical habitat designation in agricultural production areas. See their reports at: They meet with community leaders and organizations across the state to help them better understand the current economy and develop policies and programs for the future. In addition, Bruce Sorte is a regular columnist for several small town Oregon newspapers and he often appears as a guest on radio call-in shows.

Economist Yong Chen has examined retail trade patterns for 12 types of businesses in each county in Oregon. Specific sectors include building materials, food retail stores and health services. See his report at: He is also studying the impacts of national policies on small Oregon communities, particularly timber-dependent towns, and how coastal communities might reduce their economic vulnerability to future tsunamis.

Social Demographer Lena Etuk specializes in community assessment, program evaluation, and survey research. Recent projects include evaluating the individual, organizational, and community impact of a rural leadership development program, surveying Tillamook County and Wallowa County residents about the vitality of their communities, and evaluating the impact of a riparian area assessment and management education program on landowners/managers, the extent of collaborative resource management within communities, and the quality of riparian areas.

In addition, the Community Vitality Working Group has created a suite of useful websites to provide you with relevant and easy-to-use data on communities in Oregon

Rural Communities Explorer

The Rural Communities Explorer is a web-based information portal serving the 723 named places and 36 counties in Oregon. Users of the Rural Communities Explorer can access: indicators of community vitality; community profiles comprised of demographic, social, economic, and environmental metrics; and related community-specific spatial data, relevant reports and documents, news articles, maps, and photos from the library archives and other sources. The RCE contact is Vince Adams and the tool is available online at:

Oregon Regional Economic Analysis Project (OR-REAP)

The OR-REAP site allows users to compare trends in population, total employment, employment by industry, and income over the past 40 years in any county with national and state trends. Interactive choices allow users to access not only data but regional analysis tools and text which provide easy to understand trends and comparisons. Access the data at: and contact Mallory Rahe with questions or comments.

Oregon County Monitor

To help counties track the progress of economic recovery and the reach of the social safety net, we have developed the Oregon County Monitor. A handy summary of county-level trends since January 2008, the Monitor gathers indicators on jobs and business conditions, and the use of social safety net programs providing cash, food and housing assistance. The Monitor effort has been led by Rich Sandler and you can find the Monitor at:

Nicole Strong Receives OSU Women of Achievement Award for 2011

The Women’s Center announced the recipients of the 2011 Women of Achievement Awards. A public reception was held in April to honor these outstanding women.  Join us in congratulating Nicole Strong of OSU Extension Forestry program.

Nicole Strong has been an instructor in the OSU Extension Service Forestry Program since 2004. Since then, she has coordinated and taught over 140 non-credit classes for 2300 forestland owners looking to acquire new skills in forest and wildlife management, financial and estate planning, and gaining access to technical and financial assistance. In addition to her tireless teaching, she also developed and fostered a project called Women Owning Woodlands Network (WOWnet). This educational program was created to lend support to the growing number of women owning forests by offering workshops designed around a peer-learning approach for sharing knowledge, skills, and networking in a safe environment. This program has taken her across the country to lead workshops and set up networks for support and other resources. What makes her even more remarkable is that her position is entirely self-funded which has required her to seek out grants in addition to all the work she puts into her work. Since 2005, she has secured over $1,000,000 for herself and her program.

Additional recipients of the Women of Achievement Awards for 2011 are as follows:

Vicki Ebbeck is an Associate Professor in the Department of Nutrition and Exercise Sciences and the Co-Director of the Sport and Exercise Psychology Laboratory. She is well-known for exemplary work advising graduate students and for seeking out non-traditional students who have difficult paths to traverse to complete their graduate work. Her feminist values are also reflected in her research. She studies women in transition at Linn-Benton Community College through a program called Turning Point Transitions that works with single parents and displaced homemakers. Her research focused on understanding the sense of autonomy in these women and how to improve upon that development through promoting behaviors that increase physical and emotional well-being. She has studied those who are traditionally overlooked in research including women who were survivors of domestic violence, substance abusers, post-menopausal women, and those who were transitioning to college from non-traditional backgrounds. Ebbeck is inspirational because she has gone above-and-beyond in her work researching and helping disadvantaged women.

Kryn Freehling-Burton is an Instructor in Women Studies whose seemingly unrelenting work ethic and passion for students has led her to become an integral part of the program. In addition to a time-consuming teaching schedule, Freehling-Burton finds time to do an array of activism including feminist-centered theatre work and consciousness-raising about issues around motherhood. Her love for theatre has been brought into her classes to inspire alternative forms of learning while her interest in motherhood led to the creation of her own class, “Sex, Lies, & Motherhood.” Her innovative teaching style and her infectiously-bubbly personality have virtually guaranteed large classes and highly positive reviews by students at the end of each term. Not only has her teaching ability impacted the department, her work behind the scenes has been invaluable. She has sat on numerous committees including undergraduate honors thesis committees and graduate committees, search committees, and the President's Commission on the Status of Women. She has worked as the interim program associate for Difference, Power, and Discrimination in 2008 and as the coordinator for the women studies online program. Freehling-Burton does it all – and then some.

Catherine “Cath” Kendrick currently spends much of her time volunteering for Project HER, an organization spreading awareness and education about breast cancer and support for those at all stages. She attends appointments with women to take notes, offer advice or comfort, sit with them during chemotherapy, and other supportive needs. In addition, she also has participated in Good Samaritan's “No One Dies Alone” program where she spends time with terminally-ill patients. Her empathy and selflessness have inspired countless friends and acquaintances to fight through tough battles and to help others. Cath has tutored students from her home since 1992 and previously worked as an instructor/ tutor for math in the Educational Opportunities Program and the Health Careers Opportunity Program at OSU. She has tutored students from elementary school to high school and she has taken part in a program that brings girls to campus for inspiration and support to stay interested math and science. Her long involvement with tutoring young girls and with groups and organizations that support women in the sciences stems from her desire to show that science is not a discipline solely for men. During her time at OSU, Kendrick was a part of the Women's Center Advisory Board, the President's Commission on the Status of Women, the Association of Women in Science, and the Faculty Women's Network. 

Press Release from Oregon State University Women of Achievement Awards Committee
Women’s Center, Oregon State University
Contact Person: Beth Rietveld, 737-1330

Congratulations to Nicole Strong, one of the Women of Achievement for 2011!

Oregon Gov. Kitzhaber Declares April 21, 2011 as OSU Extension Service Day

In recognition of the 100th anniversary of the OSU Extension Service, the Governor has proclaimed April 21, 2011, as Oregon State University Extension Day. Each legislative chamber will recognize this proclamation today. Many staff chairs and county commissioners will be in the Capitol visiting with elected officials.

Thanks to Jock Mills who helped make this possible, and to the Centennial Committee who provided leadership for many associated events. The official document is attached.


Official Proclamation from Gov. Kitzhaber for OSU Extension Service Day

Public Issues Leadership Development (PILD) Delegation

In April, an Oregon delegation of six OSU Extension faculty members and one ECAN member attended the 2011 Public Issues Leadership Development (PILD) Conference in Washington D.C. One day of the conference was spent meeting with Representatives, Senators, and staff from each of the Oregon congressional delegation.

Accompanied by Kate Sinner, OSU Government Relations, Carole Smith, Union County Staff Chair; Sam Angima, Regional Director and Lincoln County Staff Chair; Dana Martin, Deschutes County Staff Chair; Frank Burris, Curry County Staff Chair; Mary Arnold, 4-H Youth Development Specialist; Deb Maddy, Associate Provost Outreach & Engagement/Associate Director Extension; and Steve Forster, Extension Citizen Advisory Network Tillamook County did an outstanding job of informing our Oregon congressional delegation of the impacts of OSU Extension programs and asking them for help in restoring cuts to Smith-Lever funding.