2017 Henderson County Plan of Work

Approved: February 19, 2017

I. County Background

2017 Extension’s Plan of Work

Henderson County, located in the mountains of North Carolina, is one of the fastest growing counties in the western part of the state, with a 4.2% population change from 2010 to 2014, and a current population of 108,500. In 2014, the total population was 111,149, with 93.0% of these being Caucasian, 3.4% African American and 9.9% Hispanic. Median household income, 2009-2013 $44,815. About 22% of the county’s population is 65 years of age and older and 21% are 18 years of age or younger. The average home sale price is $268,190 and the median household income is $44,815. The poverty rate is 14.1% compared to the state’s 17.5%. The county enjoys a strong economic base with a four-pronged economy, and the leading contributors are Manufacturing, Retirement, Tourism, and Agriculture. There are over 37,947 acres of harvested cropland in the County. Agriculture land lost (2002-2007) 10,672 Acres. Total farm dollar value in 2014 was estimated at $101,725000 (NCDA, 2014 Census Data).

Henderson County, although now considered an urban county, is one of the leading agricultural producing counties in the state. Agriculture is a diverse industry characterized by hundreds of individual businesses varying in size and enterprise spread throughout the county. Though most individual operations may alone appear insignificant, taken together Henderson County’s farms and the businesses they support contribute significantly to the local economy. Farms and agribusinesses provide jobs, generate sales and property taxes and bring revenue to the county that is spent through the households they support. There are over 550 (average size 68 acres) farms that, together, contribute nearly $400,000,000 to the Henderson County economy. Every year agriculture spends over $80,000,000 on expenses, much of it locally. In 2011, Henderson County farms employed over 8,152 workers and had a payroll of over $18,542,000 the share of Henderson County Employment is 17.1% and the share of County “GDP” is 16.7%. In 2011 N.C. Agriculture Statistics, Henderson County, ranked 11th in NC for total crops cash receipts and 3rd in the state for vegetable, fruit and nut cash receipts, contributing nearly $38,000,000. annually. Since 2011 apple prices have increased 21% or $2.00 per bushel. The gross income apple crop in 2014 averaged $39,000,000!

Dr. Michael Walden of N.C. State University used economic data and models from IMPLAN, an economic research firm, to evaluate the economic impact of agriculture on North Carolina counties. In 2006, Henderson County businesses added $2,562,411,000 of value to the economy. This figure reflects the value of sales minus the cost of non-labor inputs and is also called gross product. Farming operations contributed $181,677,795 to the county’s total gross product, representing seven percent of all value added by businesses in the county. Agribusiness includes the manufacturing, wholesaling and retailing of food, fiber and forest products. The combined value of farming and agribusiness in 2006 was $428,516,787, or 16.7 percent of the county’s gross product. In 2006, Dr. Michael Walden , of N.C. State University conducted a Cost of Community Services study for Henderson County and found that agricultural lands contribute $1.03 in property taxes for every $1.00 in County services they receive, even under the Present-Use Value program. In contrast, residential properties contributed only $0.86 in property taxes, while commercial properties contributed $2.52 for every $1.00 in services they receive. The implication is that although residential expansion may be beneficial to the county for many reasons, when evaluating the impacts on the tax base, policy makers need to be aware that agricultural land use provides a net increase, whereas residential land use provides a net decrease.

In 2013 we had very unusual weather conditions, such as record rain fall throughout the Spring and Summer, Spring frost and scattered hail. Agriculture is still trying to recover from a sluggish economy that began in 2007. All of these factors have impacted all agriculture commodities in Henderson County. One of the largest segments effected was our Green Industry with reduced sales of over 25 percent. This down turn effected both groups of the ornamental industries. The recession continues to have a negative impact on most of the Ornamental and Green Industries in Henderson County. In particular, shrubs, trees, and sod are directly tied into the construction industry. The reduction of construction has resulted in reduced sales. In contrast, local sales of bedding plants, vegetable transplants, and most floral goods have remained somewhat stable. (NC Department of Agriculture) ranks Henderson County second in state income for Nursery, Greenhouse, Flori culture and Christmas Trees. The 2011 income was projected to be $42,300,000 for the production sector of the Ornamental Industry and about $25,000,000 for the service sector. Focus on ecosystem services, environmental landscaping, sustainability and site restoration as well as the need for various licenses and/or certification is driving the direction for the program inputs for these audiences.

In 2011 all Vegetables, Fruits, Nuts and Berries income ranked third in the state at $46,600,000. The county produces over 85% of the apples grown in NC on 5,660 acres on 117 farms (USDA, 2012) with an average gross income of approximately $21 million (yearly apple gross income averages $31M). In 2014 the County Apple Gross Income was estimated at $39 million. We have six new Hard Cider producers who are all expanding their operations, most notably,St. Paul Vineyards, Noble Hard Cider and Bold Rock. We have two local wineries: St. Paul Mtn. and Burntshirt Vineyards that total 43 ac. in the county. Most of our vegetables are produced in Mills River in the Western part of the county, on approximately 1,000 acres. Commercial vegetable production generates an average of $12 million in cash receipts each year. Henderson County ranks second in the state in harvested (600 acres) acres of tomatoes (USDA and NCDA). TriHishtle a new 24 ac. plant-grafting operation in Mills River started production in 2016. The company plans to produce 400,000 grafted plants a week with the initial target market in the SE states that produce watermelons. Small fruits, particularly blackberries, have become a new and expanding industry. Presently, we have over 100 acres in commercial blackberry and raspberry production.

Livestock and livestock products provide over $1,600,000 in farm income (USDA, 2010). Henderson County has three remaining dairies, one of which is one of the largest in N.C. The County remains a top producer of dairy products in the state, ranking eight in cash receipts in 2010 with $4,915,000 (USDA and NCDA).

In 2010, there were over 52,000 housing units, most of which have at least 1/2 acre to maintain; in addition there are over 35,000 acres of managed turf grass on golf courses, parks, athletic fields, and commercial landscapes. As an urban county, the local foods market is increasing with several small, part-time farmers producing both fresh and value added products on limited acreage. Because of this, the county has added five county farmers markets to meet the demand for local grown produce and agricultural products. Latino farmers, green industry employees, and agribusiness owners are a rapidly growing demographic groups (10% Hispanic) identified in the county. Programs for both migrant and permanent farm workers are considered to be high priority due to the growth of this population and the need for a dependable work force.

Consumer horticulture information demand continues to grow with our growing retirement population, with over 5,200 face to face contacts. The Master Gardeners program helps local homeowners with, proper plant selection and planting techniques, soil testing and nutrient management, pest/disease management, vegetable gardening, and environmental stewardship. The volunteers logged in over 5,000 hours, manning the Master Gardener "Info. line", handling walk-in clients, and working on projects within the county. All agricultural programs provide information to help the agribusiness industry stay profitable and help landowners make good economic decisions in planning for land use, farmland preservation, and agricultural sustainability.

The annual payroll from manufacturing provides the highest income for residents, with income from health and social assistance being second, and tourism third. Henderson County has gone over the 108,450 population mark, and many considered it an urban county. Henderson County is also a popular retirement spot, with 23% of the population age 65 or older. The state average is 13.2%.

While our county residents are affected by a global economy, they live in local communities which have to resolve an array of emerging issues brought about by the recent economic down turn and demographic changes. Community Development programs help local leaders, individual citizens and organizations improve their communities by providing educational programs to improve their quality of life.

Today’s families live in a rapidly changing world and are faced with decisions and choices every day. Family & Consumer Sciences educational programming efforts include foods, nutrition, health, sewing, food preservation, Buy Local 10% Campaign and food safety; human development including child development, aging, and care giving; and financial management, including home making, budgeting, and energy conservation.

Every year the Henderson County Public Education Department publishes a family/children's statistics report. The median county household income in 2011 was $46,789, above the median N.C. household income of $43,916. According to “Fast Facts 2014”, published by Henderson County Public Schools, there were 13,500 public school students in the 2013 – 2014 school year. Ethnic distribution was 71.3% Caucasian, 18.8% Hispanic, 3.7% African American, 3.7% Multiracial, 1.3% Asian, 0.3% Hawaiian Pacific, and 0.2% American Indian. The North Carolina Department of Non-public Education reports that Henderson County had 1575 home school students in the 2012 – 2013 school year, and 839 students in private schools. The NC Department of Public Instruction reports that the Henderson County Public Schools’ 2012-13 four-year cohort graduation rate was 88%, while the state rate was 83%. In the 2011 – 2012 school year, 107 students dropped out.

4-H Youth Development programs help youth with educational achievement and excellence in areas like public speaking, project records, leadership experiences, community service and citizenship. 4-H clubs and classes provide adult mentors and role models who enjoy helping youth learn skills they can use throughout their lives. 4-H teens help to teach younger members skills they have learned.

Youth educational programs at Bullington Gardens reach elementary school students to teach various elements of plant science, help high school sophomores to develop necessary job skills to become successful citizens and help students with significant developmental and physical disabilities to have a better quality of life. Additionally, as a complement to Urban Horticulture efforts, Bullington offers workshops throughout the year to adults on gardening, landscaping, soils, and other pertinent topics.

(NCCES) North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service, Henderson County also utilizes an ongoing needs assessment process, which involves Henderson County Commissioners, County Extension Advisory Council and Specialized Committees as well as the general public, to ensure that educational programs are meeting the people's educational needs.

Extension Programming Priorities are set forth in this year’s Plan of Work. The emphasis is based on Henderson Counties Agricultural Preservation Plan adopted by the Henderson County Commissioners. The purpose of this plan is to present recommendations to assist County Commissioners, government leaders, NCCES and its advisory groups in preserving agriculture in Henderson County by promoting agricultural and family farms to be sustainable. This plan also includes suggestion for economic development and farmland protection. To accomplish this, an assessment of the agricultural industry in Henderson County was made and its challenges and opportunities identified. The assessment was made by compiling information from statistical reports, by holding a series of five public input meetings held throughout the county and through individual interviews.

Farming and farmland are important to Henderson County for the contributions they make to the economy, rural heritage, the health of the environment and the overall quality of life. There are more than 500 farm businesses and families that utilize 16 percent of the County’s land base. Farms are one of the predominant land uses in the rural areas; they generate income for families, provide scenic beauty for residents and visitors, retain and filter storm water, and harbor wildlife.

Assessment of the Agricultural Industry – Highlight Review:

* Average annual cash receipts of $400,000,000/yr. (16.7% of the county GDP, 2014

* Portion of Henderson Counties Agribusiness Economic Output 20%

* 1,645 employees and $18.5 million payroll in 2007

* Ranked 3rd in the state in 2007 in cash receipts from crops

* 557 farms (280 Full-Time, 277 Part-Time) in 2007

* 37,947 acres of active farmland in 2007 (16% of total county area)

* 10,672 acres of farmland lost (between 2002 and 2007)

* Hired Farm Labor 1,645 Employees and 3,500 added Seasonal/Migrant Workers (Studies indicate 2.8 higher paying jobs are created per farm-worker)

* Total Ag. Employment 8,152

* Share of Henderson Co. Employment 17.1%

* Annual Farm Receipts $400M (2014)

* Total all Ag. Income $400M (source Dr. Mike Walden, NCSU Ag. Econ. Dept. 2008)

Agricultural revenues may appear high at the county level. But, many farmers and their families are operating with high production costs paired with low wholesale prices. Farms in Henderson County face these and other challenges that threaten the long-term viability and sustainability of our industry. The many challenges to the agriculture industry vary within the business enterprise and are depend on the commodity, quality and location within the county.

Highlight Challenges for Agriculture and the Family Farm:

* Low profitability due to ever increasing input costs, weather problems and foreign imports

* Need for infrastructure (machinery, coolers and equipment for the business enterprise) and capital improvements needed for improved productivity and quality.

* Residential growth and demand for farmland to be developed for housing

* Labor shortage

* Aging farmer population and concerns about the lack of future family farming generations

* High land prices and limited land availability for purchase or lease for young family farmers

* Cumbersome and costly food safety rules and regulation requirements

* Unsafe road conditions for farmers and their equipment, because of reckless and speeding vehicles on secondary roads.

NCCES also used an environmental scanning tool that included resident survey responses from a cross section of the population. We use guidance from the County Commissioners plus our advisory leadership system. The most significant need identified in the latest needs assessment was:

* Impact of rapid growth, Henderson County has experienced a 14.9% growth (2007) compared with the regional growth of the Asheville area at 7.2% and, there is an expected growth of over 23,000 people in the county over the next ten years.

* Improved agriculture production and agribusiness sustainability

* Improved natural resource management, and environmental stewardship

* Obesity and chronic disease health issues that impact our residents' health and medical care costs, especially with the county's percentage of overweight children ages 5-11 more than doubling from 2000-2010.

* Jobs/skills preparation is a high priority need for youth and adults. Improved family life skills is critical to the health and well- being of families in this changing and very difficult economy

In response to these significant identified local needs, NCCES Henderson County set the following top three priorities for local long-range programming efforts:

1. Improving Agricultural Production, Sustainability and Natural Resource and Environmental Stewardship

2. Improving Health & Nutrition

3. Improving Educational Achievement & Workforce Preparation for youth and adults.

In keeping with the NCCES mission, the Henderson County Center will continue to monitor its ongoing needs assessment process by involving the County Commissioners, NCCES Henderson County Advisory Council and its Specialized Advisory Committees, along with the general public. This will insure changing community needs are met with timely, relevant, researched based educational programs, empowering people by providing solutions to their problems.

II. Objectives to Address the Cooperative Extension Long Range Plan

North Carolina's plant production systems will become more profitable and sustainable.
North Carolina's agricultural crops industry makes major contributions to local communities and the state’s economy. In 2014, the estimated farm gate value of crops was $4.72 billion, placing NC as the 17th largest in the nation. North Carolina is one of the most diversified agriculture states in the nation. The state's 50,200 farmers grow over 80 different commodities, utilizing 8.4 million of the state's 31 million acres to furnish consumers a dependable and affordable supply of food and fiber. Tobacco remains one of the state's most predominant farm commodities. North Carolina produces more tobacco and sweet potatoes than any other state and ranks second in Christmas tree cash receipts. The state also produces a significant amount of cucumbers for pickles, lima beans, turnip greens, collard greens, mustard greens, strawberries, bell peppers, blueberries, chili peppers, fresh market cucumbers, snap beans, cabbage, eggplant, watermelons, pecans, peaches, squash, apples, sweet corn, tomatoes, and grapes. There is continual technological change and the relative profitability of individual farm enterprises changes over time; therefore, farmers must respond by modifying their farming operations. Changes in consumer demand create new opportunities for producers. Growth in alternative forms of agriculture will include, among others, organic and niche market production. Educational and training programs for producers of plant agricultural products and services will enhance their ability to achieve financial and lifestyle goals and to enhance economic development locally, regionally and statewide.
North Carolina's animal production systems will become more profitable and sustainable.
North Carolina's livestock industry makes major contributions to local communities and the state’s economy. In 2014, the estimated farm gate value of livestock, dairy, and poultry was $8.85 billion, placing NC as the 7th largest in the nation. Hogs & pigs have historically been an important part of North Carolina agriculture. The industry has changed dramatically since the 1980s from the small farm raising a few hogs to large confinement type operations. North Carolina's number of cattle & calves on farms has remained relatively stable throughout time. Milk cow inventory and milk production have continued to decline in the state. Unlike other commodities, broiler production in North Carolina is increasing throughout the state. There is continual technological change and the relative profitability of individual farm enterprises changes over time; therefore, farmers must respond by modifying their farming operations. Changes in consumer demand create new opportunities for producers. Growth in alternative forms of agriculture will include, among others, organic, niche market production, and pasture-raised livestock. Educational and training programs for producers of animal agricultural products and services will enhance their ability to achieve financial and lifestyle goals and to enhance economic development locally, regionally and statewide.
Producers will increase sales of food locally to more agriculturally aware consumers through market development, producer and consumer education, and new farmer and infrastructure support.
Farmers will increase their capacity to supply product for local food sales through market planning efforts, producer and consumer education, beginning farmer training programs and local market infrastructure development. The fastest growing area of consumer demand in agriculture continues to be organic. Farmers' markets continue to expand as do multiple efforts in local sustainable agriculture. Nationally, "Buy Local, Buy Fresh" movements have emerged in the face of concerns about the risks involved in long distance transportation of industrialized food production. Increasingly, public officials and business leaders see promotion of local farm products as good public policy and local economic development. Additionally, individuals will learn to supplement their current diet by growing their own fruits and vegetables as individuals or as community groups.
Agricultural producers, workers, food handlers and consumers will adopt safer food and agricultural production, handling, and distribution practices that reduce workplace and home injuries/illnesses, enhance food security, and increase the quality and safety of food that North Carolinians prepare and consume.
Training and educational programs for farmers, agricultural workers, food handlers, and consumers will provide research-based programming, materials, information and expertise to compel these individuals to implement practices relating to the overall safety and security for the food supply and farming systems. Components of this include on-farm, packinghouse, and transportation management, retail and food service establishments, and consumer’s homes. Therefore targeted audiences include farmers and agricultural workers and their families, food handlers and workers (both amateur and commercial), transporters, processors, business operators, food service and retail staff, supervisors of any food facility, long term care facility staff and individuals who purchase, prepare and serve food in their homes. With an estimated 76 million foodborne illnesses annually, costing an estimated $1.4 trillion, food safety highlights a specific area of risk to be addressed by Cooperative Extension. The recent produce-related foodborne illness outbreaks have brought public attention to a problem that has been increasing nationally for the last ten years. The issues of foodborne illness and food safety pose immediate risks for farmers affecting the areas of economics, consumer demand, and market access. Because no processing or kill steps are involved with produce that is typically eaten raw, the best measures to limit microorganisms and fresh produce related illness are to prevent microbes from contaminating the product. Practices like Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs), Good Handling Practices (GHPs), and Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points (HACCP) represent a systematic preventive approach to food safety, protecting agricultural products as they move from farm to retail and restaurants and finally to families. While there is currently no legal requirements for growers to implement GAPs, buyers have responded to the public concern by requiring their produce growers to adhere to current guidelines and possibly even require GAPs certification. The main areas of concern incorporate production, harvesting, packing, and transporting produce in the areas of water quality, manure management, domestic and wildlife management, worker health and hygiene, transportation, traceability, and documentation. For North Carolina growers to be competitive and produce safe product, it is important that they gain knowledge about and implement food safety programs that minimize physical, chemical and biological hazards Food safety risks do not stop at primary production. As risks associated with pathogens can occur at many junctions between primary production and consumption, food safety is a truly farm-to-fork issue. The World Health Organization and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have defined 5 factors that lead to foodborne illness outbreaks: Inadequate cooking or processing procedures; improper storage and holding temperatures, cross-contamination between potentially contaminated raw materials and ready-to-eat foods (either directly or through poor sanitation); and poor implementation of personal hygiene practices. The preventative steps targeting risk reduction taken at each of the components making up the food supply chain are critical in preventing food-borne illness. Educational programs including ServSAFE, School HACCP workshops, food safety at childcare and senior centers, and targeted farm-to-fork food safety inclusion for all food handlers is necessary for important for advances in knowledge and implementation of preventative programs. Equally important is that families and children have a secure food supply. Hunger in American households has risen by 43 percent over the last five years, according to an analysis of US Department of Agriculture (USDA) data released in the report "Household Food Security in the United States, 2004." The analysis, completed by the Center on Hunger and Poverty at Brandeis University, shows that more than 7 million people have joined the ranks of the hungry since 1999. The USDA report says that 38.2 million Americans live in households that suffer directly from hunger and food insecurity, including nearly 14 million children. That figure is up from 31 million Americans in 1999. Limited-resource, socially disadvantaged and food-insecure individuals, families and communities will be provided with information and opportunities to enhance household food, diet and nutritional security. Agriculture is one of the most hazardous industries in the United States, and consistently ranks as the first, second or third most deadly industry along with mining and construction. Agriculture is unique in that the work and home place are often the same, exposing both workers and family members to hazards. In the United States on average each year, there are 700 deaths and 140,000 injuries to those who work in agriculture, defined as farming, forestry and fishing. Farmers, farmworkers and their families are at high risk for fatal and nonfatal injuries (primarily from tractor roll-overs, machinery entanglements, and animal handling incidents), musculo-skeletal conditions, work-related lung diseases, noise-induced hearing loss, heat stress and heat stroke, pesticide exposure and illness, skin diseases, behavioral health issues, and certain cancers associated with chemical use and prolonged sun exposure. The health and safety of migrant and seasonal farmworkers are complicated by other conditions such as infectious disease, hypertension, and diabetes, as well as cultural and language barriers. Farmers and farmworkers alike are subject to lack of access to health care. Agricultural injury and illness are costly, with total US annual costs reaching $4.5 billion and per farm costs equaling $2,500, or 15% of net income. Median health care coverage for farm families is $6,000 per year. In North Carolina, 27% of farm families do not have health insurance, while 29% of farmers do not have health insurance. Many others have health care coverage with high annual deductibles and high premiums. Agromedicine is a comprehensive, collaborative approach involving both agricultural and health scientists to develop solutions addressing the health and safety issues of the agricultural community through research, education and outreach. The North Carolina Agromedicine Institute, a partnership of NC State University, NC A&T State University and East Carolina University in collaboration with others, develops and evaluates effective programs to reduce injury and illness in agriculture, forestry and fishing. One such program is called Certified Safe Farm (CSF) and AgriSafe. CSF and AgriSafe were first developed and researched in Iowa. CSF and AgriSafe are being adapted to North Carolina agriculture by the NC Agromedicine Institute and its Cooperative Extension collaborators. Certified Safe Farm combines AgriSafe health services (wellness and occupational health screenings and personal protection equipment selection and fit services) conducted by trained AgriSafe health providers, on-farm safety reviews conducted by trained Extension agents, and community education and outreach to achieve safety and health goals established by participating farmers and their employees and families. Insurance incentives and safety equipment cost-share programs for participating farmers are still being developed. Other ongoing educational programs addressing agricultural health and safety include farm safety days for children, youth, or families, employee hands-on farm safety training, the National Safe Tractor and Machinery Operation Program for youth, and youth ATV operator safety certification programs.
Individuals and groups will acquire leadership and decision making capacities needed to guide and actively participate in local and state organizations.
Leadership is important to every level of a community sharing in the creation of wealth and well-being. Youth and adult leaders must be capable of motivating groups to achieve common goals that impact North Carolina families and communities.They will need the confidence and skill to guide and support North Carolina community and state organizations. Citizens participating in the 2007 NC Tomorrow survey denoted the importance of leadership by clearly requesting leadership training (54%), social advising, community advising and technical assistance (45%)from their university system.
Community members, organizations and local government will engage in collaborative dialog and decision-making to build economically, socially and environmentally resilient communities. This will be done through inclusive engagement, partnership building, and/or community planning.
Throughout North Carolina, communities that come together to collaboratively address issues and/or interests are enhancing the community's quality of life and its economic, social and environmental resiliency. The state's growing population and economy is producing significant changes in its communities and in some cases resulting in the emergence of new communities. The perspectives, capacity and skills of all community members are essential to aligning community decisions and actions with local needs, assets and priorities. NC Cooperative Extension has an important role in engaging and supporting the ongoing work of citizens, organizations, and communities in decision-making, and strategic dialog to influence positive public policy, foster development of partnerships, create empowered communities, be prepared to address the high potential for natural and human-caused disasters.
Futures that Work: School to Career Pathways
We are living in a new economy powered by technology, fueled by information and driven by knowledge. Extension programs provide opportunities for youth and adults to improve their level of education and increase their skills that enable them to be competitive in our global society and workforce.
North Carolinians will make decisions and adopt practices that implement effective resource protection and conservation.
The natural resources in North Carolina are an important asset that benefit all citizens, but many citizens are unaware of the consequences of actions and practices they implement. The continued population growth of North Carolina is putting pressure on natural resources in terms of quantity and quality. To have a healthy and productive natural environment, professionals and citizens must be knowledgeable of environmental issues and conservation and management opportunities.
Consumers and communities will enhance the value of plants, animals, and landscapes while conserving valuable natural resources and protecting the environment.
Residential, commercial and public entities will make decisions regarding plant selection, placement and management that will decrease water consumption, preserve and improve water quality, mitigate storm water contaminants, reduce erosion, energy consumption, and greenwaste, expand wildlife habitat, improve real estate value, and improve diet and nutrition of consumers. The horse and "farmer lifestyle" industry will continue to grow and have an increasing impact on North Carolina's economy, while protecting the environment. The NCDA&CS reports that 65,000 horse producers own over 225,000 horses which annually generates over $704 million of gross revenue from training, showing, boarding and breeding establishments in addition to agri-business sales of horse-related products. The total economic impact of the NC green industry is $8.6 billion, involving 151,982 employees, and 120,741 acres of production (Green Industry Council, 2006). North Carolina residential consumers spend $5.9 billion dollars per year on garden and landscape related expenses (Green Industry Council, 2006). For 2007, North Carolina's population is estimated to be 8,968,800 (LINC). The population grew by 1,323,288 (15%), between 1997 and 2007 and it is projected to grow by another 1,330,055 (13%), over the next ten years (LINC). Over 50% of the population now lives in urban areas. Despite evidence of the ecological and financial benefits, environmentally responsible landscaping strategies are not being implemented widely. Renovating a landscape to incorporate water conserving strategies may result in using 36% less water. Urban water run-off accounts for the majority of water pollution, mostly pesticides and fertilizers, that does not come from a specific industrial source. Selection of well-adapted plants, effective pest management, and appropriate care and feeding of plants will greatly reduce dependence on fertilizers and pesticides. Rain water that is not absorbed by the soil becomes erosive storm water runoff, which transports pollutants such as fertilizer, pesticides, sediment, motor oil, litter, and animal waste to local streams and rivers. Landscape designs will include rain gardens and other runoff catchment facilities (underground cisterns, etc.) that are attractive and easy to maintain in residential areas. Homeowners will learn that proper plant selection and placement can reduce winter heating bills by as much as 15% and summer cooling bills by as much as 50 percent, while reducing the need to prune over-sized plants. Wild habitat areas are rapidly being converted into housing and commercial properties, displacing native plants and animals. Choosing native or adapted plants that provide food and shelter creates a haven for butterflies, birds, lizards, and other animals. Edible landscaping can increase the amount and expand the variety of fresh fruits and vegetables consumed.
Youth and adult program participants will make healthy food choices, achieve the recommended amount of physical activity and reduce risk factors for chronic diseases.
Many North Carolinians are affected by chronic disease and conditions that compromise their quality of life and well-being. Heart disease, stroke and cancer continue to be leading causes of death in our state. In addition, obesity and obesity related chronic diseases such as diabetes continue to rise at alarming rates. Healthy eating and physical activity are critical to achieve optimal health. Many North Carolinians have diets that are too high in calories and too low in fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Portion sizes, foods eaten away-from-home and consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages continue to rise. In addition, most North Carolinians do not engage in regular physical activity. The prevalence of overweight and obesity has nearly doubled in the past 10 years. If the trend of overweight is not slowed, it will eliminate the progress we have made in reducing the burden of weigh-related chronic disease. One in every three US children born after 2000 will become diabetic unless many more people start eating less and exercising more. The cost of obesity in North Carolina in health care costs alone is over 2 billion dollars. There are many proposed reasons for the obesity epidemic, however unhealthy eating and physical inactivity are widely recognizes as primary contributors to the problem. Those who make healthy food choices and are physically active are more likely to achieve and maintain a healthy weight as well reduce chronic diseases. Ultimately, this will lead to reduction in health care costs, increased longevity, greater productivity and improved quality of life.

III. Other Objectives

Community, leader and volunteer development Environmental stewardship and natural resources management Sustainable, profitable and safe plant, animal and food System Youth and adults achieve educational success
North Carolina's plant, animal and food systems will become more profitable and sustainable. Educational and training programs for producers of agricultural, horticultural and of forest products and services will enhance their ability to achieve financial and lifestyle goals and to enhance economic development locally, regionally and statewide. North Carolina's producers produce a wide variety of agricultural, food, fiber, and horticultural products that make major contributions to local communities and the states economy. In 2006, the estimated farm gate value of agricultural and horticultural production was $8.2 billion, placing NC as the 8th largest in the nation. The total economic impact of these agricultural, horticultural and food industries accounts for approximately one-quarter of the states economy. North Carolina farm numbers have declined consistently for decades as a result of economies of scale and global competition in traditional agricultural commodities. Producers of traditional commodities have been forced to expand or leave agriculture. There is continual technological change and the relative profitability of individual farm enterprises changes over time; therefore, farmers must respond by modifying their farming operations. Changes in consumer demand create new opportunities for producers unable or unwilling to compete in commodity production. North Carolina's rapidly growing population creates competition for resources and the need for well informed and well crafted public policy to resolve conflicts and meet societies goals. New enterprises will develop or agriculturally-based enterprises will add value to and diversify farms by producing energy feedstocks, bioenergy, or other value-added products that will increase rural economic development. Growth in alternative forms of agriculture will include, among others, organic, niche market production, and pasture-raised livestock. Opportunities for diversification of operations and increased income on North Carolina farms will increase as emerging, alternative and entrepreneurial agricultural business opportunities are created in the marketplace. Producers will increase sales of food locally to more agriculturally aware consumers through market development, producer and consumer education, and new farmer and infrastructure support. Farmers will increase their capacity to supply product for local food sales through market planning efforts, producer and consumer education, beginning farmer training programs and local market infrastructure development. The fastest growing area of consumer demand in agriculture continues to be organic. Farmers' markets continue to expand as do multiple efforts in local sustainable agriculture. Nationally, "Buy Local, Buy Fresh" movements have emerged in the face of concerns about the risks involved in long distance transportation of industrialized food production. Increasingly, public officials and business leaders see promotion of local farm products as good public policy and local economic development. Additionally, individuals will learn to supplement their current diet by growing their own fruits and vegetables as individuals or as community groups. Agricultural producers, workers, food handlers and consumers will adopt safer food and agricultural production, handling, and distribution practices that reduce workplace and home injuries/illnesses, enhance food security, and increase the quality and safety of food that North Carolinians prepare and consume. Training and educational programs for farmers, agricultural workers, food handlers, and consumers will provide research-based programming, materials, information and expertise to compel these individuals to implement practices relating to the overall safety and security for the food supply and farming systems. Components of this include on-farm, packinghouse, and transportation management, retail and food service establishments, and consumer’s homes. Therefore targeted audiences include farmers and agricultural workers and their families, food handlers and workers (both amateur and commercial), transporters, processors, business operators, food service and retail staff, supervisors of any food facility, long term care facility staff and individuals who purchase, prepare and serve food in their homes. With an estimated 76 million foodborne illnesses annually, costing an estimated $1.4 trillion, food safety highlights a specific area of risk to be addressed by Cooperative Extension. The recent produce-related foodborne illness outbreaks have brought public attention to a problem that has been increasing nationally for the last ten years. The issues of foodborne illness and food safety pose immediate risks for farmers affecting the areas of economics, consumer demand, and market access. Because no processing or kill steps are involved with produce that is typically eaten raw, the best measures to limit microorganisms and fresh produce related illness are to prevent microbes from contaminating the product. Practices like Good Agricultural Practices (GAPs), Good Handling Practices (GHPs), and Hazard Analysis Critical Control Points (HACCP) represent a systematic preventive approach to food safety, protecting agricultural products as they move from farm to retail and restaurants and finally to families. While there is currently no legal requirements for growers to implement GAPs, buyers have responded to the public concern by requiring their produce growers to adhere to current guidelines and possibly even require GAPs certification. The main areas of concern incorporate production, harvesting, packing, and transporting produce in the areas of water quality, manure management, domestic and wildlife management, worker health and hygiene, transportation, traceability, and documentation. For North Carolina growers to be competitive and produce safe product, it is important that they gain knowledge about and implement food safety programs that minimize physical, chemical and biological hazards Food safety risks do not stop at primary production. As risks associated with pathogens can occur at many junctions between primary production and consumption, food safety is a truly farm-to-fork issue. The World Health Organization and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have defined 5 factors that lead to foodborne illness outbreaks: Inadequate cooking or processing procedures; improper storage and holding temperatures, cross-contamination between potentially contaminated raw materials and ready-to-eat foods (either directly or through poor sanitation); and poor implementation of personal hygiene practices. The preventative steps targeting risk reduction taken at each of the components making up the food supply chain are critical in preventing food-borne illness. Educational programs including ServSAFE, School HACCP workshops, food safety at childcare and senior centers, and targeted farm-to-fork food safety inclusion for all food handlers is necessary for important for advances in knowledge and implementation of preventative programs. Equally important is that families and children have a secure food supply. Hunger in American households has risen by 43 percent over the last five years, according to an analysis of US Department of Agriculture (USDA) data released in the report "Household Food Security in the United States, 2004." The analysis, completed by the Center on Hunger and Poverty at Brandeis University, shows that more than 7 million people have joined the ranks of the hungry since 1999. The USDA report says that 38.2 million Americans live in households that suffer directly from hunger and food insecurity, including nearly 14 million children. That figure is up from 31 million Americans in 1999. Limited-resource, socially disadvantaged and food-insecure individuals, families and communities will be provided with information and opportunities to enhance household food, diet and nutritional security. Agriculture is one of the most hazardous industries in the United States, and consistently ranks as the first, second or third most deadly industry along with mining and construction. Agriculture is unique in that the work and home place are often the same, exposing both workers and family members to hazards. In the United States on average each year, there are 700 deaths and 140,000 injuries to those who work in agriculture, defined as farming, forestry and fishing. Farmers, farmworkers and their families are at high risk for fatal and nonfatal injuries (primarily from tractor roll-overs, machinery entanglements, and animal handling incidents), musculo-skeletal conditions, work-related lung diseases, noise-induced hearing loss, heat stress and heat stroke, pesticide exposure and illness, skin diseases, behavioral health issues, and certain cancers associated with chemical use and prolonged sun exposure. The health and safety of migrant and seasonal farmworkers are complicated by other conditions such as infectious disease, hypertension, and diabetes, as well as cultural and language barriers. Farmers and farmworkers alike are subject to lack of access to health care. Agricultural injury and illness are costly, with total US annual costs reaching $4.5 billion and per farm costs equaling $2,500, or 15% of net income. Median health care coverage for farm families is $6,000 per year. In North Carolina, 27% of farm families do not have health insurance, while 29% of farmers do not have health insurance. Many others have health care coverage with high annual deductibles and high premiums. Agromedicine is a comprehensive, collaborative approach involving both agricultural and health scientists to develop solutions addressing the health and safety issues of the agricultural community through research, education and outreach. The North Carolina Agromedicine Institute, a partnership of NC State University, NC A&T State University and East Carolina University in collaboration with others, develops and evaluates effective programs to reduce injury and illness in agriculture, forestry and fishing. One such program is called Certified Safe Farm (CSF) and AgriSafe. CSF and AgriSafe were first developed and researched in Iowa. CSF and AgriSafe are being adapted to North Carolina agriculture by the NC Agromedicine Institute and its Cooperative Extension collaborators. Certified Safe Farm combines AgriSafe health services (wellness and occupational health screenings and personal protection equipment selection and fit services) conducted by trained AgriSafe health providers, on-farm safety reviews conducted by trained Extension agents, and community education and outreach to achieve safety and health goals established by participating farmers and their employees and families. Insurance incentives and safety equipment cost-share programs for participating farmers are still being developed. Other ongoing educational programs addressing agricultural health and safety include farm safety days for children, youth, or families, employee hands-on farm safety training, the National Safe Tractor and Machinery Operation Program for youth, and youth ATV operator safety certification programs. Individuals and groups will acquire leadership and decision making capacities needed to guide and actively participate in local and state organizations. Leadership is important to every level of a community sharing in the creation of wealth and well-being. Youth and adult leaders must be capable of motivating groups to achieve common goals that impact North Carolina families and communities.They will need the confidence and skill to guide and support North Carolina community and state organizations. Citizens participating in the 2007 NC Tomorrow survey denoted the importance of leadership by clearly requesting leadership training (54%), social advising, community advising and technical assistance (45%)from their university system. Youth and adults will address community issues and/or challenges through volunteerism. Youth and adult volunteers in North Carolina contribute thousands of hours each year to strengthen communities and create strong foundations for the future. As these individuals engage in service, they are gaining new skills, generating new programs to serve their communities, building successful organizations, and fostering an ethic of service. Cooperative Extension is poised to support the development of interpersonal skills, leadership experiences, and content knowledge to ensure that citizens are prepared to engage in meaningful service throughout the lifespan. Current research suggests that youth and adult participation positively impacts civic engagement and contributes to the development of leadership capacities. With its presence in every county, Cooperative Extension is uniquely positioned to contribute to building a stronger ethic of service among youth and adults. Futures that Work: School to Career Pathways We are living in a new economy powered by technology, fueled by information and driven by knowledge. Extension programs provide opportunities for youth and adults to improve their level of education and increase their skills that enable them to be competitive in our global society and workforce. North Carolinians will make decisions and adopt practices that implement effective resource protection and conservation. The natural resources in North Carolina are an important asset that benefit all citizens, but many citizens are unaware of the consequences of actions and practices they implement. The continued population growth of North Carolina is putting pressure on natural resources in terms of quantity and quality. To have a healthy and productive natural environment, professionals and citizens must be knowledgeable of environmental issues and conservation and management opportunities. Consumers and communities will enhance the value of plants, animals, and landscapes while conserving valuable natural resources and protecting the environment. Residential, commercial and public entities will make decisions regarding plant selection, placement and management that will decrease water consumption, preserve and improve water quality, mitigate storm water contaminants, reduce erosion, energy consumption, and greenwaste, expand wildlife habitat, improve real estate value, and improve diet and nutrition of consumers. The horse and "farmer lifestyle" industry will continue to grow and have an increasing impact on North Carolina's economy, while protecting the environment. The NCDA&CS reports that 65,000 horse producers own over 225,000 horses which annually generates over $704 million of gross revenue from training, showing, boarding and breeding establishments in addition to agri-business sales of horse-related products. The total economic impact of the NC green industry is $8.6 billion, involving 151,982 employees, and 120,741 acres of production (Green Industry Council, 2006). North Carolina residential consumers spend $5.9 billion dollars per year on garden and landscape related expenses (Green Industry Council, 2006). For 2007, North Carolina's population is estimated to be 8,968,800 (LINC). The population grew by 1,323,288 (15%), between 1997 and 2007 and it is projected to grow by another 1,330,055 (13%), over the next ten years (LINC). Over 50% of the population now lives in urban areas. Despite evidence of the ecological and financial benefits, environmentally responsible landscaping strategies are not being implemented widely. Renovating a landscape to incorporate water conserving strategies may result in using 36% less water. Urban water run-off accounts for the majority of water pollution, mostly pesticides and fertilizers, that does not come from a specific industrial source. Selection of well-adapted plants, effective pest management, and appropriate care and feeding of plants will greatly reduce dependence on fertilizers and pesticides. Rain water that is not absorbed by the soil becomes erosive storm water runoff, which transports pollutants such as fertilizer, pesticides, sediment, motor oil, litter, and animal waste to local streams and rivers. Landscape designs will include rain gardens and other runoff catchment facilities (underground cisterns, etc.) that are attractive and easy to maintain in residential areas. Homeowners will learn that proper plant selection and placement can reduce winter heating bills by as much as 15% and summer cooling bills by as much as 50 percent, while reducing the need to prune over-sized plants. Wild habitat areas are rapidly being converted into housing and commercial properties, displacing native plants and animals. Choosing native or adapted plants that provide food and shelter creates a haven for butterflies, birds, lizards, and other animals. Edible landscaping can increase the amount and expand the variety of fresh fruits and vegetables consumed. Youth and adult program participants will make healthy food choices, achieve the recommended amount of physical activity and reduce risk factors for chronic diseases. Many North Carolinians are affected by chronic disease and conditions that compromise their quality of life and well-being. Heart disease, stroke and cancer continue to be leading causes of death in our state. In addition, obesity and obesity related chronic diseases such as diabetes continue to rise at alarming rates. Healthy eating and physical activity are critical to achieve optimal health. Many North Carolinians have diets that are too high in calories and too low in fruits, vegetables and whole grains. Portion sizes, foods eaten away-from-home and consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages continue to rise. In addition, most North Carolinians do not engage in regular physical activity. The prevalence of overweight and obesity has nearly doubled in the past 10 years. If the trend of overweight is not slowed, it will eliminate the progress we have made in reducing the burden of weigh-related chronic disease. One in every three US children born after 2000 will become diabetic unless many more people start eating less and exercising more. The cost of obesity in North Carolina in health care costs alone is over 2 billion dollars. There are many proposed reasons for the obesity epidemic, however unhealthy eating and physical inactivity are widely recognizes as primary contributors to the problem. Those who make healthy food choices and are physically active are more likely to achieve and maintain a healthy weight as well reduce chronic diseases. Ultimately, this will lead to reduction in health care costs, increased long

IV. Relationship to County Government Objectives

The Henderson County 2020 Comprehensive Plan, which was developed at the request of the County Commissioners, is intended to provide guidance for a broad range of decisions made by government and the private sector for the next 20 years. All Departments will improve accountability and fiscal stewardship by increasing cost effectiveness of county government. The Henderson County Center will continue to stay on budget and will increase efforts to conserve office energy and resources.

The following are key elements of the NC Cooperative Extension, Henderson County Center Comprehensive Plan.

Section 3

1 Economic Development – Reduce Farmland Loss: Only by having profitable farms and agribusinesses will these entrepreneurs remain in business and farmland loss be minimized. Cooperative Extension assists farmers through education, using the newest researched based crop production technology, develop ongoing feasibility studies and marketing plans to determine the most profitable and sustainable crops for their land. In addition, Extension assists farmers in utilizing cutting edge technology and research to produce the most profitable crops or livestock production. Our role, involves working with both the producer and the consumer of these commodities. We provided services to our local agriculture industries helping them to increase yields, profits and their markets.

4-H clubs, classes, and volunteer opportunities help youth to develop skills that will benefit them in the workforce: good work ethic, responsibility, public speaking, citizenship, community service, as well as an interest in learning.
Address the needs of children within the community: 4-H youth development educational programs build essential life skills in leadership, public speaking, citizenship and community service, science and technology, and career awareness to assist youth in becoming competent, coping members of a global society.

The Family & Consumer Sciences Program efforts will address child nutrition and wellness include child obesity prevention, child care provider skills training, and parenting skills education for strengthening local families.

2 Agriculture – Support the County's agriculture industry as directed by the County Commissioners because of its importance to our local economy: Cooperative Extension provides education and technical assistance to growers, managers, and employees in agricultural production and the green industries to support the success of local businesses such as: apple, vegetable, small fruit, row crops, hay, livestock and dairy producers. Also very important are the turf managers, nursery/greenhouse growers and landscapers. In addition, Extension also helps promote the sale of local agricultural products that are sold at tailgate and direct markets. This effort helps growers increase the profitability and movement of their: produce, meat, poultry, fiber and other value added products. Agents based in Henderson County are working with local producers to help them meet (GAP) Good Agricultural Practice standards, plus new food safety, legal requirements.

4-H clubs, classes and contests teach about livestock, poultry, horses, sheep, gardening, and careers in agriculture. Developing an interest in these fields at a young age will encourage our youth to explore careers or hobbies in the field of agriculture.

3 Natural Resources –Protect Water Quality: Extension provides information on cutting edge practices for sediment and erosion control and storm water management. This supports County Planning Department's efforts for development plans related to future county ordinances. The most important Extension water quality effort is providing public education to all sectors of the community, related to storm water, sediment and erosion control best practices. In addition, Extension provides technical training to local professionals in a variety of industries (e.g. landscapers, turf grass professionals, farmers, livestock producers, nurserymen, grading and building contractors, etc.); as well as private landowners, to build capacity to implement water quality (BMP) Best Management Practices that meet county, state and federal requirements. Extension programs also have been implemented to assist growers and landscapers with water conservation practices to help reduce their dependency on municipal water sources.

Address solid waste management issues including recycling and upcoming pertinent solid waste legislation: Extension promotes participation in solid waste management among a variety of niche audiences across the county. Through regular Extension programs, agents have the opportunity to educate the public about solid waste management activities appropriate to each audience, e.g., pesticide and pesticide container disposal through pesticide certification programs, composting and organic waste management in gardening, landscaping, and farming programs, etc.

4-H participants in the Wildlife Habitat Education program learn how to protect and manage for wildlife. Most second grade students in Henderson County participate in 4-H Embryology, in which they learn about Bobwhite Quail. Teachers report that students develop an interest in wildlife and caring for wildlife. One 4-H club recycles Christmas lights, keeping them out of the landfill, and contributes the funds earned to nonprofit organizations in the county.

Address the needs of aging and elderly within the community: The Family & Consumer Sciences Program will include adult caregiver training and support nutrition and wellness for elderly to prevent malnutrition, energy conservation education to help older adults extend resources so they can continue to live at home, and Family Financial Management Skills such as "Identity Theft Prevention" and home budget Education.

V. Diversity Plan

The (NCCES) North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service, Henderson County Center values diversity as a positive attribute in our county, state and county. Diversity is reflected in the cultural and core differences in our society. These differences are the basis for our feelings, values, attitudes, beliefs, religion and perceptions, that has allowed our county to develop into the "melting pot" of the greatest country in the world! Diversity should bring our society, our country, our community together as one, the United States of America.

Programs in Henderson County are open to all people and are advertised to the general population through local media as well as the Extension web pages and newsletters. Efforts are made to reach minority and other under-served populations through networks, community efforts, and our advisory system. As and example, our Staff, working with volunteers conducted our fourth Migrant and Seasonal Farm-worker Health and Safety Fair. We conducted classed on: food preservation, health screening, children's educational games, dental health, sun safety, gang prevention, pesticide and tractor safety. Our Center will continue efforts to build links and market educational materials and opportunities to minority populations. Also, every effort is made to try to get local Spanish speaking clientele enroll in English as a second language. Free course are offered at our local Blue Ridge Community College. Our services are open to all, regardless of religion, age, income, ethnic, gender, educational level, sexual orientation, or physically challenged.

Our equal opportunity statement is on all of our printed material: "North Carolina State University and North Carolina A&T State University commit themselves to positive action to secure equal opportunity regardless of race, color, creed, national origin, religion, sex, age, veteran status, or disability. In addition, the two Universities welcome all persons without regard to sexual orientation. North Carolina State University, North Carolina A&T State University, U.S. Department of Agriculture, and local governments cooperating."

VI. Primary Delivery and Evaluation Methods

Delivering timely, relevant educational programs that meet critical local needs is the cornerstone of Extension’s mission. Extension educational programs are designed to equip the citizens of Henderson County with the knowledge, skills and tools to improve their economic prosperity, environmental stewardship and quality of life. An Extension program delivery system is a planned and organized eclectic mix of educational methods used during an educational program. Extension educational methods are the specific ways by which research-based information is shared with targeted learners. Extension educators in our county employ a wide variety of hands-on, experiential educational methods, such as interactive workshops and classes, demonstrations, field days and tours, that allow learners to fully engage in the learning process, test new knowledge and/or practice new skills during the educational session. Equally important, this plan will also include educational methods such as seminars, client visits, home study kits, fact sheets, newsletters, and other social media such as: email, YouTube, texting, Blogs, Facebook, Webinars, Twitter and Extension related websites.

All of these serve to support and reinforce learning as well as provide motivation for continued learning. Armed with the most current literature on effective teaching and learning, Extension educators also skillfully select educational methods based on the learning style preferences and special needs of the targeted learners. These client-focused methods afford learners the opportunity to gain the necessary knowledge and skills to change their lives in meaningful ways. Another key feature of Extension program delivery that is evident in this plan is our commitment to being customer driven and customer focused. As such, in addition to the County Extension Center, Extension educational programs are delivered online, in community centers, on farms, and other locations in order for our programs to be available and accessible to, and fully utilized by, the citizens of Henderson County.

The measure of success for Extension programs is the impact those programs have on the citizens of Henderson County. Evaluation methods are important tools to gauge the knowledge citizens have acquired due to these programs and the subsequent changes that are a result. Measures of change in knowledge gained, the application of that knowledge, the number and types of new skills gained are done by using quantitative research tools such as retrospective testing, pre and post tests and surveys. Extension as a results-oriented organization is also committed to assessing the social, economic and environmental impact that these programs have on the individuals who participate, their families and the community as a whole. Plans are to measure both the short and long term impacts of these programs. The financial impact and cost benefit analysis of our primary evaluation methods is outlined in this annual plan. Additionally, as Extension values listening to and dialoguing with targeted participants, this plan also includes qualitative evaluation methods such as testimonials and interviews with participants

VII. Membership of Advisory Leadership System

Henderson County Advisory Council
Henderson County Advisory Council
1. Chairman: Dunkin FitzSimons, Landscape Service Professional Rep.
2. 1st Vice Chair: Alan Ward, Grape & Apple Rep.
3. Jason Davis, Veg. Rep.
4. Liz Enloe, Community Dev.
5. Chris English, BRCC
6. Steven Godfrey, Apple Rep
7. Briana Gover, 4-H
8. Joellen Johnson, Bullington rep.
9. Dan Poeta, Bullington rep
10. Juan Ramirez, Member at Large
11. Noland Ramsey, CARET Rep.
12. Wells Shealy, Commercial Livestock Rep.
13. Larry Stepp, Jr. Commercial Caneberry Rep.
14. Eric Stoneman, Green Industry
15. Judy Swensen, FCS
16. Hannah Worrell, 4-H rep
17. Juan Ramirez - Mbr at Large
Advisors:
Ken Allison, Kenny Barnwell, Rick Jordan, Theron Maybin, Fred Pittillo,
Liason:
Tommy Thompson, Chairman, Co. Commissioner
Jonathan Wallin Dir. Soil and Water Con.
Charlie Messer, Co. Commissioner
Bill Lapsley, Co. Commissioner
John Mitchell, Asst. Co. Mgr.
Roger Snyder, Mills River, Board Member
Jeff Chandler, MHCREC
Jimmy Cowan, NC Farm Bureau
Trey Enloe, President BRAG
Kirby Johnson, Flavor 1st

4-H & Youth Advisory Committee
Kate Raevuori-Wilson
John Newcomer
Anna Pereira
Tony Bryant
Kimberly Gage
Hanna Worrell
Donna Dixon
Jenna Brackett



Green Industry Advisory Committee
Ken Allison
Tim Boone
David Bradley
Sotero Estrada
Bill Glenn
Alan Johnson
Anthony LeBude
Bert Lemke
Jamie Lopez
Joel McCraw
Dennis Neimeyer
Brian Crisp
Dunkin Fitzsimmons
Joey Galloway
John Wayne Hardison
Hope Janowitz
Livestock/Field Crops Advisory Committee
Tony Carland
Joe Taylor
Dickie King
Jimmy Cowan
Noland Ramsey
Beverly Hargus
Family and Consumer Science Advisory Committee
Jill Geis
Rosie Blackwell
Marilyn Duggins
Roxanna Pepper
Valerie Sen
Urban Horticulture Advisory Committee
Nancy Gilchrist
Joellen Johnson
Betty Lockwood
Kathy Connors
Sharon Mendelsohn
Jane Grossman
Deb Daniel

Beekeeping Advisory Committee
Phil Holbert
Kathy Taylor
Lewis Cauble
Chris Aamodt
David Stallings
David Foti
Blue Ridge Apple Growers Advisory Committee
Jason Blackwell, Pres.
Jerred Nix, Vic. Pres
Lola Coston, Sec.
Dawn Creasman Tres.
Nathan Lyda
Hunter Newman
Christen Nix
Trey Enloe
Jason Justice
Doug Marshall
Tony Hill
Richard Staton
Advisors:
Greg Nix, Kenny Barnwell, Geraldine & Bo Lamb, Don Ward, Jack Ruff, Alan Ward and Juan Ramirez










Henderson County Vegetable Advisory Committee
Jason Davis, Chair
Danny McConnell
Randy Edmunson
Kirby Johnson
Esmeralda Sandoval
Theron Maybin
Mary Maybin
Blue Ridge Farm Direct Marketing Committee
Randy Newman, Pres.
Dawn Creasman
Sonya Holingsworth
Lola Coston
David Butler
Donald Price
Bullington Center Advisory Committee
Bill Burdett, Chair
Jane Davis
Mary Louise Corn
Nancy Gilchrist
Pam Johnson
Joellen Johnson
Juanita Lambert
Larason Lambert
Fritz McCall
Kerrie Roach

VIII. Staff Membership

Terry Kelley
Title: County Extension Director and Extension Agent, Agriculture - Tree Fruit
Phone: (828) 697-4891
Email: wtkelley@ncsu.edu

Karen Blaedow
Title: Extension Agent, Agriculture - Vegetable and Small Fruit
Phone: (828) 697-4891
Email: karen_blaedow@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Responsible for providing educational programs in vegetable and small fruit horticulture as well as technical assistance to commercial farmers.

Brent Buchanan
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Dairy
Phone: (315) 212-1277
Email: brent_buchanan@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Dairy Extension Programming in Western North Carolina Counties of Haywood, Madison, Buncombe, Transylvania, Henderson, Yancey, McDowell, Polk, Rutherford, Mitchell, Avery, Burke, Cleveland, Watauga, Caldwell, Catawba, Lincoln, Gaston, Ashe, Wilkes, Alexander, Iredell, Alleghany, Surry, Yadkin, and Davie.

Lauren Greene
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agribusiness - Poultry
Phone: (336) 651-7347
Email: lauren_greene@ncsu.edu

Noah Henson
Title: Area Agent, Agriculture - Livestock, Dairy, Equine, Forages
Phone: (828) 255-5522
Email: nbhenson@ncsu.edu

Marissa Herchler
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Animal Food Safety (FSMA Programs)
Phone: (919) 515-5396
Email: marissa_herchler@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Marissa is an Area Specialized Agent for animal food safety, with emphasis on the new Food Safety Modernization Act rules, as they apply to feed mills in North Carolina. Please contact Marissa with any FSMA related questions, or PCQI training inquiries.

Sue Janowiak
Title: 4-H Program Assistant
Phone: (828) 697-4891
Email: sue_janowiak@ncsu.edu

Renay Knapp
Title: Extension Agent, Family and Consumer Sciences
Phone: (828) 697-4891
Email: renay_knapp@ncsu.edu

Bill Lord
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Water Resources
Phone: (919) 496-3344
Email: william_lord@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Water quality education and technical assistance

Craig Mauney
Title: Extension Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Commercial Vegetables & Fruits
Phone: (828) 684-3562
Email: craig_mauney@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Provides educational opportunities, training and technical support to commercial fruit and vegetable growers, agents, and industry in Western NC.

John Murphy
Title: Bullington Gardens Director
Phone: (828) 698-6104
Email: john_murphy@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Manages Bullington Gardens property, oversees staff and volunteers and leads educational programs for adults and children.

Currey Nobles
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Food Safety
Phone: (919) 515-9520
Email: canobles@ncsu.edu

Ivy Olson
Title: County Extension Administrative Assistant
Phone: (828) 697-4891
Email: ivy_olson@ncsu.edu

Steve Pettis
Title: Extension Agent, Agriculture
Phone: (828) 697-4891
Email: steve_pettis@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Commercial and Consumer Horticulture Agent

Elena Rogers
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Food Safety - Fresh Produce Western NC
Phone: (828) 352-2519
Email: elena_rogers@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Provide educational programs, training and technical support focusing on fresh produce safety to Agents and growers in Western NC.

Denise Sherrill
Title: Extension Agent, 4-H Youth Development
Phone: (828) 697-4891
Email: denise_sherrill@ncsu.edu

Debbie Stroud
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Consumer and Retail Food Safety
Phone: (910) 814-6033
Email: dlstroud@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Area Specialized Agents in Consumer and Retail Food Safety help to ensure that Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS) Agents have access to timely, evidence-based food safety information. This is accomplished by (1) working with FCS Agents in their counties, (2) developing food safety materials and (3) planning and implementing a NC Safe Plates Food Safety Info Center.

Amanda Taylor
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Nursery and Greenhouse, Western Region
Phone: (828) 475-2915
Email: amanda_jo_taylor@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Provides programming to commercial nursery and greenhouse producers in Alexander, Alleghany, Ashe, Avery, Buncombe, Burke, Caldwell, Catawba, Cherokee, Clay, Cleveland, Gaston, Graham, Haywood, Henderson, Jackson, Lincoln, Macon, Madison, McDowell, Mitchell, Polk, Rutherford, Swain, Transylvania, Watauga, Wilkes, and Yancey Counties.

Skip Thompson
Title: Area Specialized Agent - Aquaculture
Phone: (828) 456-3575
Email: Skip_Thompson@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Provide educational opportunities and technical support to the trout and carp aquaculture industries in 38 counties and the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians (EBCI) in western North Carolina. Fish health, production management, and waste management educational programs will assist trout farmers, fee-fishing pond managers, carp ponds and trout fingerling producers with the management and sustainability of their facilities.

Barbara Walker
Title: County Extension Support Specialist
Phone: (828) 697-4891
Email: barbara_walker@ncsu.edu

Mitch Woodward
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Watersheds and Water Quality
Phone: (919) 250-1112
Email: mdwoodwa@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: NC Cooperative Extension's Goals include: - NC's natural resources and environmental quality will be protected, conserved and enhanced. - NC will have profitable, environmentally sustainable plant, animal and food systems. Protecting our environmental resources, particularly drinking water quality, is a top priority in NC. NC Cooperative Extension is a leader in teaching, researching, and accelerating the adoption of effective water quality protection practices.

IX. Contact Information

Henderson County Center
100 Jackson Park Rd
Henderson County Center
Hendersonville, NC 28792

Phone: (828) 697-4891
Fax: (828) 697-4581
URL: http://henderson.ces.ncsu.edu