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December 21, 2006

Oldest agent passes away

Sanderlin at groundbreaking
Elizabeth Poyner Sanderlin, center, breaks ground in August on the new Currituck County Extension center.

Elizabeth Poyner Sanderlin, the retired North Carolina Cooperative Extension agent for whom the auditorium of Extension’s new $6.6 million Currituck center will be named, passed away Dec. 20, 2006 at her home. She was 102.

Sanderlin, “Miss Liz” to her many friends, spent much of her working life helping her community grow from a rural, swamp-dotted backwater to a major agriculture- and tourism-supported county.

A funeral service will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday, Dec. 23, at Moyock United Methodist Church. Burial will follow in the Moyock Cemetery. The family will receive visitors from 6-7:30 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 22, at the church.

Memorial donations may be made to either the Currituck County Library or the Elizabeth P. Sanderlin Auditorium fundraiser by making a check payable to Currituck 4-H Foundation, c/o NCCE Currituck County, P.O. Box 10, Currituck, NC 27929.

To sign the online guest register, visit www.twifordfh.com.

In August, Cooperative Extension employees and residents joined Sanderlin and county officials at the 28,262-square-foot education and outreach center’s groundbreaking. The 500-seat Elizabeth P. Sanderlin Auditorium named in her honor and the new center will be available to the public when they open in late 2007.

Sanderlin smiled throughout the groundbreaking ceremony and stepped up to a shovel to have her photo taken with commissioners and others.

The new building, on U.S. 158 at Barco, will include four classrooms, two conference rooms, a demonstration kitchen, an Extension library and offices, which will allow Extension to concentrate many services and programs now offered by 14 full-time staffers from the county courthouse.

Landscaping will include water quality best management practice demonstration ponds and botanical gardens.

At the groundbreaking, Rodney Sawyer, Currituck Cooperative Extension director, noted that Extension’s Currituck operations began in the 1920s. He also recounted events in the life of Sanderlin, Currituck's home demonstration agent from 1951 to 1969.

“Miss Liz is an 'Extension icon,'” he said. “Her contributions to the citizens of Currituck County and North Carolina exemplify the Extension philosophy of helping people put knowledge to work to improve the quality of life.”

”During my career, her words of encouragement and support for our current efforts have fueled a desire to live up to her accomplishments,” Sawyer said. “She is like a guardian angel who looks over our programs and staff to herald the efforts and sing our praises. Miss Liz has inspired me to greater heights and gives credence to continuing the cause. She truly is a beloved citizen of Currituck.”

When Currituck County commissioners in 2004 declared Sept. 27 “Elizabeth Poyner Sanderlin Day,” speakers noted her longtime efforts to help rural women. One commissioner said he learned from her about 4-H, Extension's youth development program.

Sanderlin was born in Moyock, a village along the as-yet-unnamed Intracoastal Waterway, then edged by marsh-laced fields and woods. A 1926 Louisburg College graduate, she returned to Currituck, where she taught home economics, then worked for the Depression-era Works Progress Administration and later, the Farmers Home Administration.

She joined the then-North Carolina State College of Agriculture and Engineering’s Agricultural Extension Service (now Cooperative Extension at North Carolina State University) as a home extension agent in the 1950s and ’60s.

When David Cecelski profiled Miss Liz for The News and Observer (Raleigh) in December 2002, she recalled her childhood one-room schoolhouse, socializing with friends at the Northern & Southern railway station at Moyock when trains came in, roads so horrible that people “stayed stuck,” closing the gate against free-ranging cattle between Moyock and Snowden, and families raising what they ate (although her father owned a grocery store).

She remembered the excitement of “company coming in and church meetings.

“You never knew who was going to eat at our house because people would come from up the creek and other places to shop, and there weren't any restaurants over yonder,”
she said in the N&O story.

Such sociability served her well in her generations of Extension and other public-spirited work in the county. Sanderlin, with other county ag extension agents and the Works Progress Administration, developed the idea of farmer-supplied and operated roadside stands on U.S. 158/N.C. 168, Currituck County’s linear main thoroughfare, to snare the ever-increasing Outer Banks-bound tourist trade. For most of Miss Liz’s career, that five-lane asphalt highway was at best a narrow, yet critically important concrete strip. But as the county grew, so did its Extension programs, and Sanderlin remained a critical component of that growth.

-A. Latham

Posted by Art at 01:37 PM

Coconut trees in N.C.? Warm up to the idea

"Hardiness zones" for various plants and trees have shifted northward as temperatures have climbed since the U.S. Department of Agriculture last published a hardiness zone map in 1990.
Read more from the Greensboro News & Record

Posted by Dave at 08:23 AM

December 20, 2006

News from N.C. A&T State

The Cooperative Extension Program at A&T is one of nine 1890 land-grants that recently received funding from USDA’s Cooperative States Research Education and Extension Service to bring delegations to the 2007 National 4-H Conference March 24-29.

The conference is held annually at the National 4-H Youth Conference Center in Chevy Chase, Md., and the recommendations from youth, volunteers and 4-H youth development professionals attending the conference play a major role in shaping 4-H programs and activities. Five 4-H’ers from Forsyth County have been selected for the A&T Extension delegation to the National 4-H Conference.

Read more from ag e-dispatch

Posted by Natalie at 01:28 PM

December 18, 2006

Wilmington school installs rain garden

Wilmington raingarden
Jason Wright, a North Carolina Cooperative Extension coastal stormwater management associate, helps students from Wilmington's Gregory Elementary School start planting the new rain garden in front of the school. (Art Latham photo)

On a pleasant autumn day in a south-central Wilmington neighborhood known as The Bottom, third- and fifth-graders spilling out of Gregory Elementary School of Science and Math seemed glad to get a chance to stretch outdoors.

But the students weren’t headed for the playground.

Joined by their teachers and the principal, they filed out to an area between the school’s front parking lot and Anne Street, where a small chore awaited: helping construct a rain garden to keep polluted parking lot water from reaching Burnt Mill Creek, then the Cape Fear River and the Atlantic Ocean.

Read more

Posted by Art at 03:54 PM

For N.C. soybean growers, less really is more

Over the last five years, North Carolina soybean growers have been putting fewer seeds in the ground yet harvesting roughly the same amount of soybeans.

The result, as one might expect, is a healthier bottom line. Indeed, Dr. Jim Dunphy, a soybean specialist at North Carolina State University, estimates that soybean growers statewide made about $26 million more in 2006 than they would have had they continued doing what they were doing in 2001.

It was Dunphy, a North Carolina Cooperative Extension specialist in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at N.C. State, working with Extension agents across the state, who persuaded growers that they could reduce seeding rates while maintaining yields.

Read more

Posted by Dave at 02:30 PM

December 13, 2006

N.C. 4-H poultry team places 9th in nation

The Henderson County 4-H Poultry Judging Team represented North Carolina on Nov. 16 at the National 4-H Poultry and Egg Conference in Louisville, Ky.

This team placed ninth in the national contest. In individual scoring, Katie McCraw placed 10th overall in judging market eggs.

Read more from the Hendersonville Times-News

Posted by Suzanne at 11:09 AM | Comments (0)

December 12, 2006

Hass is associate POD director

Lanny Hass

Dr. Lanny Hass has agreed to serve as the associate director of Personal and Organizational Development, effective Dec. 1. Hass replaces Dr. David Jenkins who retired in 2006.

Hass has worked for Cooperative Extension for over 25 years
serving in Virginia and North Carolina as an area agent and specialist. He grew up on a farm in rural North Carolina and received degrees from the University of North Carolina at Asheville (economics) and the University of Tennessee (agricultural economics). Hass earned his doctorate from N.C. State University in occupational education and is known nationally for his skills in organizational development and leadership.

"Dr. Hass brings a wealth of experience to this new position, and I know he will do great things for the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service," said Dr. Jon Ort, director of the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service at N.C. State.

Posted by Natalie at 08:31 AM

December 11, 2006

Horse Progam Leader Conference is Jan. 27-28 in Greensboro

People interested in working with young people and horses may be interested in the Carolina/Virginia Horse Volunteer Leader Training Conference Jan. 27-28 in Greensboro.
Read more

Posted by Dave at 01:52 PM | Comments (0)

December 07, 2006

Watauga agent takes top Farm Bureau honors

Callie Birdsell receives award
North Carolina Farm Bureau (NCFB) Vice President J.M. Wright Jr. (left) and Young Farmer and Rancher Chairman Brandon Moore (right) present Callie Birdsell (center) the Young Farmer and Rancher Discussion Meet Award. (Farm Bureau photo)

Callie Birdsell, assistant Extension agent with North Carolina Cooperative Extension in Watauga County, took first place recently in the N.C. Farm Bureau's Discussion Meet.

Read more from the Farm Bureau's news release

Posted by Natalie at 09:54 AM

December 05, 2006

Call for nominations to Diversity Catalyst Team

TO: All NC Cooperative Extension Employees
FROM: Dr. Jon F. Ort Assistant Vice Chancellor, Associate Dean and Director
Dr. M. Ray McKinnie Administrator/Associate Dean for Extension
DATE: December 5, 2006
SUBJECT: Diversity Catalyst Team – Call for Nominations

The Diversity Catalyst Team is seeking nominations for new members. The Diversity Catalyst Team is a representative group from every sector of the organization. This team is comprised of members of all group identities across the range of differences that include but are not limited to gender, race, sexual orientation, spiritual beliefs, abilities, class, rank, tenure and age. This group is supported by the organization to work together to design the implementation strategies that create the climate for change. They work in partnership with the administrative leadership to actualize the strategies as well as serve as a resource to the system on diversity and multicultural organizational development.

Please take a few moments to consider those individuals who would be a good fit for this team. The team members must embrace the commitment toward all aspects of open and participatory diversity and pluralism and further develop the skills necessary to lead the organization in the process. Please nominate yourself or a co-worker for this awesome opportunity. The Diversity Catalyst Team will receive ongoing training to develop a common language and to learn more about managing diversity for organizational change. There will also be system recognition and support for participation. This will not just be a committee; it is a group of individuals that have a passion about helping our organization be all that it can be…the best in the country.

The nomination form for Diversity Catalyst Team members was sent to all Extension employees in a Dec. 5 email memorandum. You may contact either of the individuals listed below for other details or questions you may have.

Chiquita McAllister
NC A&T Personnel
P.O Box 21928
Greensboro, N.C. 27420

Harvey Lineberry, II
NC State University
CALS Personnel
Campus Box 7917
Raleigh, NC 27695

We are requesting that nominations be submitted by December 15, but will accept nominations after this date. Please consider nominating yourself or a coworker for this team.

Posted by Natalie at 10:45 AM

December 04, 2006

New publications available from Communication Services

Chemical Treatments to Control Turbidity on Construction Sites, AG-439-62, has been delivered. This Soil Facts publication by Rich McLaughlin describes several chemical treatment options for reducing turbidity in impounded water. To order copies, use the online ordering system available through the online publications catalog at http://www.ces.ncsu.edu/xrdb or contact Jeanne Marie Wallace in Communication Services.

Practicing Forestry Under Local Regulations, WON-41, has been delivered. This Woodland Owner Note provides guidance on practicing forestry under local government regulations. To order copies, contact the author, Robert Bardon.

Level Spreaders: Overview, Design, and Maintenance,
AG-588-9W, is now on the Web at
http://www.bae.ncsu.edu/stormwater/PublicationFiles/LevelSpreaders2006.pdf. Level spreaders are stormwater structures that can support the filtering action of riparian buffers if designed and installed properly. This publication presents the latest research findings on level spreaders in North Carolina and describes recommended practices for designing, installing, and maintaining these structures. This publication by Bill Hunt and Jon Hathaway is part of the Urban Waterways series. It is only available on the Web; please do not order print copies from Communication Services.

Posted by Natalie at 04:28 PM