Tuesday Update: Continuing to grow as an organization

July 6, 2021

After completing our Structured for Success process a year ago, we officially launched our new structure to transform our organization. Andrea Nelson, assistant vice president for county services, and I thank you all for making the transition during the pandemic and for continuing to work and grow as an organization. Together we all have reached several milestones. For example:

  • We defined county director and regional director duties for Models 1 and 3.
  • We reduced daily operational and personnel burdens on councils, while not removing their authority granted by Iowa Code Chapter 176A.
  • We established two director of field operations positions that have increased consistency and improved financial compliance. The DFOs provide accessible support for county and state staff and are available to cover vacant regional director positions.
  • County staff are eligible for ISU benefits; 33 counties are currently in the plan.
  • The Two-Way Scorecard Communication Tool has increased accountability to the signed Memorandum of Understanding. The data show increased satisfaction, particularly among councils, and indicate that having smaller regions is beneficial and more county staff are engaged in their local communities.

We have more work to do, including connecting Model 1 county directors to program units and formalizing a professional development plan for supervisors. The current MOU continues through June 30, 2023, and councils may choose to change model numbers once during the three-year agreement.

Throughout the state we’re seeing more communication and collaboration within regions. Thank you for continuing to engage all Iowans in research, education, and extension experiences to address current and emerging real-life challenges. Together we will build a strong Iowa.

New HR partner begins July 12

Mallory Hamilton has accepted an offer to become the HR partner supporting the Offices of the Vice President for Extension and Outreach and the Vice President for Research. She will begin her new role on July 12. Mallory has 7.5 years of ISU experience in HR and comes to this position after leading as a senior HR coordinator for the dually administered units.

Webinar: Reaching Latinx Audiences

Join Lupe Duran Sanchez and Neylise Larregui Cintron, ISU Extension and Outreach's U.S. Latino/a/x Studies summer interns; Leah Feltz, social media specialist; and Jon Wolseth, community development specialist, for this DYK Webinar July 22, 10 a.m., Reaching Latinx Audiences through Outreach and Marketing, on Zoom, https://iastate.zoom.us/j/93089850212.

Gain access to foundational Latinx audience research and understanding, tips on how to better engage with the Latinx community, and access to newly developed strategic planning documents and marketing items designed for the Latinx community. There will also be time for Q & A. This webinar will be recorded and available on MyExtension.

More notes

  • The Iowa Department of Public Health is conducting the Iowa Health Assessment Survey and is encouraging wide participation to assess the health of our state. IDPH is not collecting personal health information through the survey. Instead, the survey is an opportunity for Iowans to tell IDPH what we all can work on together to improve health in Iowa. The survey is part of step one in the Healthy Iowans state health assessment process. Consider completing the survey and encouraging other Iowans to participate as well.
  • ISU Extension and Outreach continues as a sponsor of "Iowa History 101." The mobile museum from the State Historical Society of Iowa features a new exhibition of “Iowa’s People and Places” and begins its 99-county tour July 9-11 at the Pomeroy Sesquicentennial (Calhoun County). You can follow the mobile museum's statewide journey on facebook.com/IowaHistory.
  • Did you know? Recreating the Extension Staff Directory has been part of the county website transition. Staff profiles (which include staff photos from SmugMug) now will feed automatically from the staff directory to the county websites, so that staff only need to maintain one profile.

John D. Lawrence
Vice President for Extension and Outreach