1999 State Epsilon Sigma Phi Awards

Presented January 11, 2000
Agriculture Program Headquarters Staff Conference

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State Meritorious Support Service Award

Susan Lee - Click for larger version Susan Lee, Extension Assistant for the Family Development & Resource Management Unit, has made a major contribution to Extension through editing and formatting resource materials to increase usability by our clientele. Susan is proficient in desktop publishing and graphic software. She has used these skills to significantly enhance the development and quality of the FDRM web site.

Susan's sharp attention to cost and production issues has allowed FDRM to extend its resources to better serve the families of Texas.

Carrie Huntinger - Click for larger version Carrie Huntzinger is Office Manager for the Texas Agricultural Extension Service's Bexar County office in San Antonio. She efficiently manages this large urban Extension Office which touches the lives of more than one million individuals yearly through educational outreach activities. In her tenure she has worked with 48 professional staff members and adopted the philosophy from an agent that "my job is to make my boss look good." She makes all of her co-workers, Bexar county and TAEX "look good" every day.
Patricia Jones - Click for larger version Patricia M. Jones has served as the Administrative Assistant and Agriculture Secretary in the Montgomery County Extension Office for the past 8 years. She has been able to balance the responsibilities of her extended family and the demands of her duties at the Extension Office. Patti has been an integral part of the expansion of programming efforts in Montgomery County. She works closely with volunteers to coordinate projects and develop support materials. She also works with the Extension Program Council and Program Area Committees to assist them with their many activities. Patty has the ability to organize, coordinate, and attend to detail to insure the success of projects.
Susan Booth exhibits professionalism, conscientiousness, cooperation and efficiency on a daily basis in her position at the District 1 Research and Extension Center. She is a team player and is always willing to help others and stay until the job gets done. She is highly dedicate to her job, approaches each task with self-initiative and as a result makes all those around her look good.

State Early Career Service Award

Richard Parrish - Click for larger version Richard E. Parrish has served as a county Extension agent in Orange and Hardin Counties for the past 4 years. Richard has collaborated with agents in adjoining counties to conduct a 4-H Leadership Challenge Workshop, 4-H Leadership Lock-In, and Natural Resources Play Day. He has provided leadership for the Tackle Crafting portion of the State 4-H Sportfishing Project Leader Training and serves on the steering committee for this project area. He has coordinated and organized a deer hunt for hunters with physical disabilities through the construction of wheel chair accessible deer stands and volunteer assistance. Richard has also organized educational activities for homeowners and pond owners and advises the Hardin County Fair Association.This fair has seen significant growth due to Richard's leadership
Marlene Albers - Click for larger version Marlene Albers began her career with Extension in June of 1994 on one of the military projects. On October 1, 1995, she became the coordinator for Campaign Safe & Sober. Since that time she has worked diligently to reduce injuries and save lives through the Passenger Safety Education Project. For the last year she has managed the Rural Passenger Safety Education project. The project has two notable strategies for saving lives:

1. To train and certify 60 technicians in the NHTSA Child Passenger Safety Technical Training

2. To coordinate and conduct child safety seat check-up events to educate parents on correct usage of child safety seats.

Kenny Brdecko - Click for larger version Kenny Brdecko of Roberts County has conducted intensive programming on the issue of water. Tex-A-Syst and "Water Smart" curriculum reached youth and homeowners. The county conducted long range planning for water resources when water was being sold by ranches to municipalities. The North Plains PET Network, TAEX "Brushbuster" methodology, and precipitation enhancement has been introduced. In addition, marketing, risk management, and Agri-Partner programs were use to support water conservation efforts. Kenny also served as chairman of a new District 4-H Sheep Master Volunteer program.

Lynna Wright - Click for larger version Lynna Wright has served as a county Extension agent in Chambers and Waller County for the past 4 years. Lynna has provided leadership to plan and implement the Waller County Family Focus Fair and the kickoff for the Shots Across Texas project. She has also provided leadership for the Walk Across Texas project and Food Protection Management Training in Chambers County. Lynna has organized a collaborative effort with TAEX, Chambers County, and the American Heart Association to establish a seminar entitled "Jazz Up Your Recipes So Mom and Dad Can Live!" She has also established a Task Force for Teen Parents, to provide a series of parenting workshops to focus on nutrition, financial and stress management education, and building self esteem. The task force has expanded to form the Coalition on Youth Issues and addresses youth issues through educational programs. Lynna also assists 4-H members with their project activities.

State Mid-Career Service Award

Pamela Brown - Click for larger version Dr. Pamela Brown has served the Extension service in several capacities during her career. In the last four years since joining the Family Development and Resource Management Unit, she has used her research and experience in small business development, marketing and management to lead development of entrepreneurial education, interdisciplinary programming across Texas and the nation-wide Extension network. In addition, she provides continual training and resources for clothing and textiles.
Marjorie Cleland - Click for larger version Marjorie Cleland has served as a San Jacinto County Extension Agent for the past 14 years. She has provided leadership to establish, plan and implement a District Child Care Conference in the Huntsville area. She has also collaborated with other agents and specialists to obtain grants and implement a "Teen Cash Choices" poster series and a Tri-County Osteoporosis Training. Marjorie has provided leadership to collaborate with family services agency representatives to form an active county Youth Coalition and Community Resources Coalition. She has also served as a leader to implement family financial management educational programs to address investment options for families and college fund savings. In addition, Marjorie is one of the first agents in the state to conduct food safety training and raise the standards for safe food handling in the region.
Billy Kniffen - Click for larger version Billy Kniffen has provided strong natural resource, range and livestock programs in the all counties he has served. He has organized wildlife cooperatives; wild hog hunting contests, one of the first Texas Master Naturalist programs; and, presented over 40 programs in the last 2 years using a rain simulator he developed. He also implemented a carcass contest, quality assurance program and shipping point for pork producers, and maintains a strong result demonstration program.
Cheryl Supak - Click for larger version Cheryl Supak has been employed with the Texas Agricultural Extension Service for the past 11 years as a county Extension agent and recently as Project Director of the Better Living for Texans Project. She has coordinated nutrition and financial management programming efforts for limited resource youth and adults from the state level, administering overall programming, evaluation, reporting, personnel, and fiscal areas. Cheryl has trained county Extension agents, program assistants, Extension assistants, district Extension directors, district office managers, and student workers in program, personnel, and fiscal management. She has also coordinated state program planning and evaluation with the BLT Advisory Team and curriculum development and distribution to limited resources audiences. Cheryl also supervises staff members, assistants, and student workers at the State BLT Office.

State Team Award--"Year of Safety"

Paticia Hohensee and Brandon Morgan - Click for larger version Patricia Hohensee and Brandon Morgan

Grass roots planning groups proposed 1999 as the "Year for Safety" in Runnels County and the surrounding area. County Extension Agents Patricia Hohensee and Brandon Morgan teamed together to give leadership to a five point educational approach that included the Do The Buckle Campaign, File of Life Emergency Preparedness Promotion, Summer Outdoor Safety School Enrichment, Texas Farm Safety Day Camp, and a National Farm Safety and Health Week Media Blitz. Some 7,280 households benefitted from concentrated safety and accident prevention education directed by this team.

State Retiree Service Award

Wynon Mayes has been a role model and leader among her peers throughout her Extension career and in retirement. Mrs. Mayes continues to be a valued resource person, planner, and mentor. She has supported Extension educational program efforts by paricipating on planning committees, being a speaker, facilitating the Texas Community Futures Forums, and serving as an event judge. Mrs. Mayes is an active member of profession associations and their district activities.

State Distinguished Service Award

Cynthia Shattles - Click for larger version Cynthia Shattles of Ochiltree County has conducted programs in Health, Family Relationships, and Leadership. In the area of health she has reached 1427 with weight management, 940 with diabetes information, and had 144 persons walk 13,296 miles in Walk Across Texas. Caring for the Elderly, Regional Child Care Conferences for Day Care Providers, and stress management were programs presented for families. Youth leadership programs include expanding the county 4-H and volunteer program and coordination of a Career Day at Perryton High School for 566 students. Adult leadership programs include Family Community Leadership, Chamber of Commerce, and starting a task force for higher education to expand community college services.

Susie Brietling - Click for larger version Susie Breitling of Dallam County has conducted programs in health, managing family resources, and youth development. In the health area - Walk Across Texas - involved 152 people walking 12,490 miles and she introduced the Better Living for Texas Program this year reaching 458 limited resource adults and youth. Her 1998 IMPAC program of Balancing Family and Work reached 4,320 with a variety of methods increasing the amount of time with family and decreasing the amount of time in food preparation. A beef interdisciplinary effort increased awareness of the role of beef in the diet and economy. Dallam County has a very strong volunteer program utilizing a 4-H Ambassador program and a County Scholarship program.
Jim Allison - Click for larger version Jim Allison of Potter County provides leadership in agriculture and youth development. The Panhandle Agri-Foodmasters used the educational classroom to reach over 12,000, promoting agriculture products. He has also worked with Agri-Partners, Potter/Randall County Master Gardeners, Master Marketers, and TAEX Risk Management programs. The "79107" Extension program targeting low income with horticulture and nutrition outreach is being copied throughout the state. The "Workforce 2000 Project" provides a job training skills curriculum for the Amarillo School System that is being expanded. Jim has also provided state leadership as Past President of TCAAA.

State Friend of Extension

DPS Troupers - Click for larger version Texas Department of Public Safety

Traffic Law Enforcement Division

Every time the Rural Passenger Safety team called upon any of the Department of Public Safety Education Service troopers to lend their expertise at a child safety seat checkup event, the response was always positive and courteous. The Department of Public Safety nationally certified child safety seat technicians are always knowledgeable, dedicated, and interact with the public in a positive, professional manner. The presence of a DPS trooper adds credibility to these event and fosters a strong sense of well being for all present. Parents and children truly look up to them.

David Swinford - Click for larger version David Swinford has served as State Representative of the Panhandle area since 1991. He was the author and champion of the TAEX Risk Management Initiative which included over 1 million dollars of additional funding for TAEX in the last legislative session. He was also instrumental in securing additional funding in the area of 4-H, conservation of natural resources, and water. He is a farmer, 4-H leader, and graduate of the first Master Marketer program in the state. He helped organize five marketing clubs in his county. He has helped sponsor, promote and attended extension programs for the past 30 years advocating the mission of education and leadership. He is a true "Friend of Extension" and continues to be a most valuable partner and leader for the Texas Agricultural Extension Service.
Bob Givens - Click for larger version Bob Givens is the Farm and Ranch Director of KGNC Radio with the largest farm radio staff in Texas. It is the only radio program in the nation that devotes 2 hours of live programming daily covering 92 counties in the High and Rolling Plains. Bob has worked with the Potter and Randall County Program Councils, the Amarillo Research and Extension Center Advisory Board, and Potter County Beef Task Force. He utilizes AgriFoodmasters for PSA announcements done by volunteers daily. He promotes all area extension programs and results of research. A recent listener survey indicated that 65% of the producers in the High Plains tune in to the KGNC Agribusiness programs daily.

State Visionary Leadership Award

Chester Fehlis - Click for larger version Dr. Chester Fehlis has been with the Texas Agricultural Extension Service for the past 30 years. In addition to his current role as Vice-Chancellor for the Agriculture Program and Deputy Directory of Extension, Dr. Fehlis has served as Executive Associate Director, Assistant Director for County Programs, District Extension Director, and County Extension Agent. He serves as Chief Operating Officer with responsibility for daily operations of a $70 million agency and more than 1,300 employees. He also provides leadership for coordination of educational programs throughout the agency. Dr. Fehlis has implemented new programs and concepts for Extension including the Texas Community Futures Forum Process and Action Plans for 2000-2003, Urban Program Initiative, Redesigning Professional Development for Faculty, Leadership Extension Program, TAEX Salary Equity Plan for County Programs, Food Protection Management Program, Military Extension Program, Organizational Renewal Teams, and Promotion System for County Extension Agents. Dr. Fehlis has authored numerous publications and presented several papers at the State and National levels. He currently serves in leadership roles on state and national boards and councils.

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