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Henning receives national extension chairmanship

Jimmy Henning, left, receives the gavel from Daryl Buchholz, outgoing ECOP chair.

PHOTO: Brianne Gobel
Lexington, Ky.

Jimmy Henning, director of the University of Kentucky Cooperative Extension Service, recently became the chair of the Extension Committee on Organization and Policy. This committee represents all land-grant universities and is the governing and policy body for the national Cooperative Extension system.

“Dr. Henning’s extension leadership at the national level is a real asset for Kentucky. Not just because of the recognition and credibility it brings, but because our voice is heard across the country,” said Scott Smith, dean of the UK College of Agriculture, Food and Environment.

The Association of Southern Region Extension Directors nominated Henning to the committee. Each region takes turns having a one of their committee representatives serve as chair.

As chair, Henning will speak on behalf of Cooperative Extension on a variety of national issues at many venues, and he will work closely with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and its agencies. In 2014, Henning will represent extension at many celebrations of the 100th anniversary of the Smith-Lever Act, which established the Cooperative Extension Service.

In addition, he will work to advance the goals and core themes of the organization, which include building partnerships and acquiring resources, increasing strategic marketing and communications, enhancing leadership and professional development and strengthening organizational functioning.

“There are significant funding challenges at the local, state and national levels,” Henning said. “So one of my goals is making sure all the institutions understand we are all better together than we are separately, because there are significant benefits that come with being united.”

Henning’s yearlong term began Nov. 11. He served as the committee’s chair-elect for the past year.

He credits his UK Cooperative Extension colleagues with allowing him to take this national leadership position.

“If we didn’t have an incredible team here to take care of details, and this includes staff support, Karen Ramage (director of county operations), district directors and program leaders, there wouldn’t be any way that I could do this,” he said.

Contact: 

Jimmy Henning, 859-257-4302

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