May 8, 2007

One of the University of Kentucky’s strongest advocates of using extension outreach programs to benefit all Kentuckians will now lead that statewide effort.

Jimmy C. Henning, a 21-year veteran of Cooperative Extension, and the College of Agriculture’s assistant director for agriculture and natural resources since 2003, has been named associate dean and associate director for extension. 

“I look forward to working with Dr. Henning and enthusiastically welcome him to our college’s central administrative team,” said Scott Smith, dean of the College of Agriculture. “Kentucky Cooperative Extension will continue to advance under his leadership.”

Henning, a native of Georgia whose father was a county extension agent and later an extension specialist, was an agronomy faculty member and extension forages specialist at UK from 1989 until 2003. Before that, he held a similar position at the University of Missouri. While assistant extension director he provided leadership and direction for Kentucky’s county extension agents for agriculture and natural resources.

“I believe traveling throughout the state working with agents and local leaders, combined with my years as an extension professor, enabled me to see firsthand the power of extension and how people can forge partnerships, identify challenges, and then meet those challenges with innovative solutions,” Henning said.

As associate dean, he will oversee day-to-day operations of the entire UK Cooperative Extension Service, which includes specialists and agents working in family and consumer sciences, community and economic development, agriculture and natural resources, and 4-H youth development.

“These programs may be different in terms of their unique needs, but the missions of all these areas are interrelated, and our Kentucky agents and specialists understand this and are highly skilled in working together as a team to help our state’s adults and youth,” said Henning, who credits 4-H for helping develop his leadership skills during his junior high and high school years.

Since joining UK in the late ‘80s, Henning has provided leadership or support in several statewide initiatives, including tobacco education and transition, crop disease preparedness and response, pasture improvement, beef cattle management, sheep and goat improvement, emerging crop opportunities, energy conservation, forest and environmental preservation, and statewide disaster preparedness.

Henning earned the M. D. Whiteker Award for Excellence in Extension in 1997. Among his other honors are the American Society of Agronomy Fellow awarded in 2002; a Medallion Award from the American Forage and Grassland Council in 2002; and Outstanding Young Scientist 1986 from the American Forage and Grassland Council.

He earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in agronomy from the University of Georgia in 1981 and 1983 respectively, and his doctoral degree in agronomy from UK in 1986.


Haven Miller, (859) 257-4736, Ext. 272