Monday Update: Planning for recovery and more

August 24, 2020

Message from Debra Sellers, on behalf of the Office of the Vice President

ISU Extension and Outreach has identified six initiative areas for making an impact on Iowa’s recovery from the pandemic, the recession, the drought, and the derecho. In this video message on planning for recovery, Vice President for Extension and Outreach John Lawrence asks extension councils to identify which initiatives best address their county’s challenges. County staff will bring their council’s priority list to our September area-wide meetings, when they will meet with colleagues and work on an action plan to support recovering and resilience.

Resources to assist after the derecho

  • Many Iowans are struggling with stress related to the recent derecho, COVID-19, or other life circumstances. Human Sciences has some new and updated tools to help you connect Iowans to the Iowa Concern Hotline – including flyers and audio and video PSAs. The Iowa Concern resources are available on MyExtension. Please share them with your county partners and local news and radio stations.
  • The crops team is compiling resources that cover topics such as safety and well-being, evaluating crops, grain storage, silage options, and much more. The list is being updated as cleanup continues, and as specialists continue to assess the immediate and long-term impacts of the derecho.

Heaverlo is Director of Extension Operations

Today Vice President Lawrence has the following announcement:

After an internal search, Dr. Carol Heaverlo has been selected as the Director of Extension Operations with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach effective September 8. Carol will lead the identification of innovative initiatives and projects that enhance our educational programs, products, and materials to ensure ISU Extension and Outreach stays relevant for years to come as we build a #strongIowa.

I am pleased to welcome Carol to this role, which supports the strategic decision to reconfigure the Senior Director position to Director of Extension Operations. In this role she will provide leadership to our support units and strengthen ties to our program units and county services.

Since 2014 Carol has served as the director of Professional Development. She also worked as the director of extension education for ISU Extension and Outreach in Ida County from 2000-2005 and worked for the Program for Women in Science and Engineering from 2005-2014

A news release announcing Carol’s appointment will be published on the ISU Extension and Outreach website. Please join me in welcoming Carol as our new Director of Extension Operations.

Virtual photo releases

If you are capturing photos or recording video during your virtual education programs, remember to get photo/recording releases from participants. Photo release guidelines from Organizational Advancement are available in MyExtension. For more information contact Jed Findlay at or 515-294-7858.

Open for Iowa

  • The Open for Iowa Committee has updated the “Collecting Contact Information” section on the website with Iowa public health officials’ advice on how long to keep contact collecting sheets. Based on how local public health agencies are currently releasing COVID-19 cases with contact tracing, keeping the information for 28-30 days is sufficient. The committee also added a link to CDC Community Related Exposure Current guidance, for people exposed to people with known, suspected, or possible COVID-19.
  • County Services Insurance Update #5: There are no concerns about having staff help with distributing food in an emergency situation. More guidance was added within the programming section. Previous insurance Update #4 still applies. No prepared food can be served, sold, or provided by staff, volunteers, or participants at any county extension hosted program or activity regardless of the program or activity location.

About Cooperative Extension: Agriculture and Natural Resources

As a follow-up to their recent survey, the Open for Iowa committee will regularly share information about the roles of partners within Cooperative Extension. Today’s featured partner is Agriculture and Natural Resources Extension and Outreach. Extension work in Iowa began with agriculture in 1903, when Iowa State, a group of Sioux County farmers, and the county's board of supervisors created a plan for educating farmers about improving seed corn. This established the “extension idea” – taking the land-grant university to the people – which spread nationwide.

Last year ANR made over 201,000 contacts with farmers and agribusinesses through meetings, face-to-face consultations, and phone and email discussions. Every day ANR specialists present research-based information and answer technical questions to help Iowans grow the economic base of Iowa agriculture and protect our natural resources. Iowa farmers, policy makers, regulators, and agribusiness professionals have the opportunity to learn from research-based education to inform their decisions, which leads to sustainable environments, profitable farms, thriving communities, and a more secure food system. However, ANR programs impact all Iowans, whether they live in rural or urban areas, and have been developed to improve quality of life.

More notes

  • A virtual reception August 31, 2:00-3:00 p.m. will honor Mark Edelman, professor in economics, who is retiring this fall. The formal program of remarks will begin promptly at 2:00 p.m. with time at the end of the hour for informal interaction. You are welcome to stay longer after the program to visit with Mark via Zoom. The url for the reception is
  • Eligible Iowa State employees may express their interest in participating in Iowa State's Retirement Incentive Option program. Expressing interest or meeting eligibility requirements does not guarantee acceptance. Final approval will be made at the discretion of divisional leadership or their designee.
  • Labor Day, September 7, will not be a university-wide holiday this year. Classes will be in session and all departments that serve students will be working. However, on campus and throughout the state, ISU Extension and Outreach will observe the Labor Day holiday. If you have questions, please view the FAQ document posted on the ISU and UHR COVID-19 web page regarding guidance for Labor Day.

Debra M. Sellers
Associate Dean, College of Human Sciences
Director, Human Sciences Extension and Outreach