Board Excellence Newsletter - Summer 2011

Board Excellence
Information for local K-State Research and Extension Board Members
Volume I, Issue 2 — Summer 2011

From the Associate Director …
Welcome to the second issue of the Board Excellence newsletter, a link in the partnership between K-State Research and Extension and local boards.

I am pleased to announce Barbara Stone as the new state leader of the Kansas 4-H program. She is visiting many activities across Kansas this summer to see firsthand how 4-H is making a difference through youth development programs in local communities.

Dr. Stone is a former Nebraska 4-H member and career advocate for youth development. She is returning to her educational roots, having earned her bachelor’s degree from Kansas State University.

Her career has included Cooperative Extension Service assignments in Nebraska, Oregon, Texas, and North Carolina. In addition, she has eight years of senior leadership experience at National 4-H Headquarters, USDA, and the National 4-H Council.

She said she was attracted to the 4-H leadership role in Kansas because the “state’s 4-H programs have a strong legacy and a compelling future.”

We are pleased to have Barbara leading the Kansas 4-H Youth Development program.

— Daryl Buchholz,

Review Board Responsibilities for Fairs
Fairs are important learning environments for K-State Research and Extension educational programs. A fair provides a setting in which individual achievements can be evaluated against established standards for recognition of the work and commitment to various projects. 

A long history and a variety of local traditions exist among fairs in Kansas: county fairs, community fairs, multicounty fairs, and 4-H fairs. The fairs vary in terms of funding and organizational structures, but are often the cooperative responsibility of local extension and fair boards.

Generally the local extension board, agents, and volunteers are responsible for the following:

  • coordinating 4-H fair events and activities
  • communicating about 4-H fair events to members, judges, volunteers, and families of members
  • maintaining regular contact with the local fair board regarding specific 4-H fair policies and procedures
  • designing fair exhibits that reflect the learning experiences of 4-H Youth Development
  • ensuring reasonable accommodation for individuals with disabilities.

Local fair boards are generally responsible for these tasks:

  • providing facilities, equipment, and personnel to operate the fair
  • maintaining, managing, and providing security of facilities
  • managing open class divisions
  • providing clerical support for fair board responsibilities
  • providing premiums and awards for exhibits
  • securing commercial exhibits and entertainment.

Start Recruiting New Members Now for Local Boards and PDCs
At recent partnership meetings, board members and agents identified qualities of effective board members. A few of these included: knowledge about K-State Research and Extension, vision, dependability, motivation, and community spirit. 

This is the time of year to begin thinking about recruiting members for program development committees and boards.

A tool is available to help board members recruit: the board leadership module “Recruiting Board and PDC Members.” It provides a step-by-step process to identify potential board members and has been successfully used by counties and districts to recruit new board members.

These steps are included in the module:

  • List characteristics desired in future members.
  • Determine local groups or audiences where potential members might be recruited.
  • Consider possible nominees. 
  • Decide who will contact potential nominees.
  • Contact possible nominees and describe the responsibilities of PDC and board members.
  • Ask nominees to complete the Consent to be Nominated form.

This module is available on the Board Leadership website at:

Board Members Play Important Role in Agent Performance Review
One role of board members is to help agents and staff to be successful employees. This comes through positive feedback and encouragement in doing what is important for local programs.

Between now and October 1, agents will complete their portions of the performance review, impact reports, and professional development plans. The evaluation documents will be e-mailed to board members for review and comments after October 1.

Board members provide an essential element in the process by offering feedback. The performance review includes sections on program planning, implementation, reporting and evaluation; professionalism; volunteer and staff development; interpersonal and communication skills; and administration and management skills.

What is Kansas PRIDE?
What K-State Research and Extension effort has involved youth in community betterment projects, worked to retain local grocery stores and cafes, supported development of community celebrations, implemented recycling programs, and established food pantries and social services?

Kansas PRIDE is a grassroots volunteer effort to improve the quality of life in local communities.  Each Kansas community is unique, but all share a common bond: a rich heritage based on self-reliance and pride.

The goal of PRIDE is to maximize community and economic development efforts by encouraging local groups to coordinate and work collaboratively for community betterment.

PRIDE is a cooperative effort of K-State Research and Extension, the Kansas Department of Commerce, and private companies and associations.

Kansas PRIDE was established in 1970. During the past 40 years, nearly 400 communities have participated. Eighty communities are currently enrolled.  To learn more about PRIDE visit:

Volume 1, Issue 2 - Summer 2011
Click here for a link to the weekly K-State Research and Extension Tuesday Letter.