February 2021 Director’s Message
After an unprecedented series of events, including the Covid-19 pandemic, 2021 has brought us an historic winter storm that has affected all 254 counties in Texas. Throughout, Extension has worked diligently and thoughtfully to educate and serve Texans as we all cope with new and often dangerous situations. We have worked tirelessly to improve Texan’s lives at the intersection of health, agriculture and environment throughout our Texas communities.
By all accounts, 2021 has furthered the adaptability of AgriLife Extension as we respond to the need of Texans. While programs look pretty different than they did a year ago, our mission to serve Texans has not wavered. Workshops have moved into virtual or hybrid formats. You’ve generated many ideas for new educational videos and online courses. You’ve been there for Texans, and Texans have noticed. I am proud of the work that we have done and excited about the agency’s future.
I hope you are all staying safe in the midst of this ice storm and pandemic. As we all work to improve how we serve Texans, I wanted to provide a few brief updates on important and timely items as we continue into spring.
We are excited to tell our story in the legislative session that recently began. Your work has generated tremendous support in Austin. In addition to advocating for our base budget, which was reduced by 5% from the current budget, we are requesting exceptional items that would allow us to recover that 5% (our top priority) and provide funds to invest in tools that will enhance our digital engagement with Texans. Updates will be shared as the session develops.
Strategic Plan Implementation
In the virtual State of AgriLife Event, I mentioned that the Extension strategic plan would be rolled out soon. I’m happy to let you know that we will be presenting it on a webinar scheduled for 1:00 on Friday, March 5. Your feedback and engagement have been vital to creating this plan. And your contributions will be equally critical to its successful implementation. The broad purpose for creating the plan was to continue to strengthen a legacy of service. We have decades of service to Texans and we want to position ourselves to be a force for good for decades to come. As we have seen again in recent days and months, Texans need Extension and we need to make sure that we are there for them. I look forward to sharing more and working with you to implement the plan.
Thank you for all you do to serve Texas. Stay well!
Director, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension
|Superior Service Awards|
Texas A&M AgriLife came together virtually for a live premiere of theAgriLife Extension Superior Service Awards in January . For those of you who were not able to watch live, recordings are now available online. We are so proud of every one of these deserving recipients.