WVU Extension Service
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The traditional Extension Focus newsletter has been retired. It’s been replaced by a new blog, the Extension Voice. Items will be added as they are received, rather than on a set publication schedule. As in the past, critical items will still be sent ES-ALL to make sure no one misses them.


In Memoriam: Larry Cote

Dr. cote_portrait Lawrence (Larry) Sylvester Cote died on Sunday, July 24, 2016, in Saint Petersburg, Florida.

Dr. Cote was the associate provost for Extension and Public Service and director of the WVU Extension Service for over a decade. During Cote’s time with the University, he made lifelong friendships and a lasting impression with Extension educators, partners, families and community members. Despite decreases in funding in other land-grant universities throughout the nation, Cote’s leadership helped WVU Extension Service’s impact expand to serve thousands of West Virginians with a four-fold growth in private and grant funds providing resources to county faculty and staff and supporting Extension offices in all of the state’s 55 counties.

Cote’s emphasis on partnerships and collaboration on local, state and national levels helped to expand the reach of WVU Extension agents and to facilitate the construction of the Fire Service Extension State Fire Training Academy at WVU Jackson’s Mill.

His commitment to higher education and passionate advocacy work for the mission of service helped put West Virginia at the forefront of the national Extension landscape, and he will be greatly missed by the WVU Extension Service family.

Dr. Cote was a past chair of the Extension Committee on Organization and Policy (ECOP).

Arrangements are incomplete at this time.


Families and Health Director Search to Continue

On June 30, Dean Steve Bonanno announced that WVU Extension had been unable to negotiate a contract with the selected candidate for the position of Families and Health Program Unit Director.

Gina Taylor will continue serving as interim director as the search for a permanent director continues.


PEIA Announces Special Open-Enrollment Due to Late Budget Passage

The PEIA SUPPLEMENTAL Shoppers Guide 2016-2017 for web-1 Public Employees Insurance Agency has set up a special open-enrollment period for insureds who want to change coverage plans or options for dental or vision coverage. PEIA Executive Director Ted Cheatham says the special open-enrollment will run from July 1 to July 15, with any plan changes being retroactive to July 1.

PEIA has published a Supplemental Shopper’s Guide for the special enrollment period, outlining the benefit and premium changes resulting from the recently passed 2017 budget.

Remember – any changes must be made by July 15.


Clark Named Head of 4-H Youth Development

Brent Brent Clark Clark has been named director of the West Virginia 4-H Youth Development program unit, effective July 1.

Dean Steve Bonanno made the announcement on June 9.

A native of Princeton, West Virginia and a longtime 4-H’er, Brent has been with a part of Extension faculty for more than 14 years and has served as interim program director since October of last year.

Brent received a bachelor’s degree in sports medicine from Bluefield College and earned a master’s degree in strategic leadership from Mountain State University.

“Our statewide 4-H unit plays a critical role in helping West Virginia youths grow and become leaders within their communities, a mission that helps support a brighter future in West Virginia,” said Bonanno. “Brent will focus on researching new ways to reach West Virginia youths and will look critically at our 4-H programs to see how we can continue to help address the needs of our state for years to come.”


Performance Review Changes Announced

WVU Employee Relations has announced changes to the Performance Review forms and processes in order to provide a better supervisor and employee experience.

These changes are highlighted and outlined on the Employee Relations webpage.

Extension Human Resources must submit this year’s reviews to Employee Relations no later than October 31. To meet that deadline, WVU Extension – like most divisions and colleges – will be setting an earlier due date. Supervisors will be notified when that date has been set.

Employee Relations will be offering multiple training sessions for supervisors throughout the summer to provide updates on the forms, tools and processes as well as providing training on the importance of the performance review conversation. To see the schedule of general campus training sessions, please visit: https://wvutnd.augusoft.net/ and click on “courses” to view the list of workshops and to register.

Extension HR is working with Employee Relations to schedule regional training sessions. For more information, contact Extension Human Resources at 304-293-4555.


Michael Named Head of CEWD

David Tony Michael “Tony” Michael will become director of the Community, Economic and Workforce Development program unit, effective July 1.

Michael has been on faculty in Extension’s Institute for Labor Studies and Research program for more than 14 years, and has been the program leader of ILSR for 8 years.

During his announcement on June 2, Dean Steve Bonanno said, ” Tony will focus on developing collaborations to ensure Extension’s programs are available to the widest extent possible.”

The Talcott, West Virginia native holds a master’s degree from the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences, and a juris doctor from the WVU College of Law.

Learn more from WVUtoday.


ANR Director Search to Continue

On May 25, Dean Steve Bonanno announced that WVU Extension had been unable to negotiate a contract with the selected candidate for the position of Agriculture and Natural Resources Program Unit Director.

“We will renew our advertisements and continue to take applications until a sufficient pool of qualified applicants is reached,” said Bonanno. “We are committed to finding the best, and right, director for our program units. Ronnie Helmondollar has graciously agreed to continue in the interim role.”