2018 Hertford County Plan of Work

Approved: January 26, 2018

I. County Background

Hertford County is located in rural northeastern North Carolina about 60 miles from major urban areas of Virginia such as Norfolk, Hampton Roads, and Virginia Beach. There are 3 major towns in Hertford County; Ahoskie, Murfreesboro and Winton. The county is located about 2 and 1/2 hours from the Raleigh, NC area.
The county is mostly rural agriculture. Major employment is found outside the county in Virginia. The Public School System and Vidant Roanoke-Chowan Hospital have the largest employee base in the county. Over the past 20 years the county has lost numerous manufacturing jobs.
According to the 2010 Census county demographics indicate: the per capita income is $17,993; and 4,000 residents are without public or private insurance. The poverty rate is 25%. The county population is 24,669 of which 60.6% are African Americans and 3.1% are Hispanic/Latinos. Health data indicates that the top issues affecting Hertford County residents are obesity, diabetes, cancer, AIDS/HIV, and adolescent pregnancy.
Higher educational resources located in Hertford County consist of Roanoke-Chowan Community College, Chowan University and Shaw University. Additional educational resources are East Carolina University and Elizabeth City State University located in the northeast district.
The Environmental Scanning process previously conducted consisted of a mail survey to every 10th resident on the county tax list and one community forum conducted. A total of 150 surveys were returned from citizens aged 26 to 92. In addition, other agency's surveys and data, such as the Health Department, have also been used to identify priority areas for Hertford County.
The priority issues identified were: 1) Keeping fit through nutrition and health, 2) Building youth character and life skills; 3) Prevention of youth at-risk behavior, 4) Alternative sources of income for farmers; 5) Increase farm profitability and safe practices.

II. Objectives to Address the Cooperative Extension Long Range Plan

North Carolina's plant production systems will become more profitable and sustainable.

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.

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.

Individuals and groups will acquire leadership and decision making capacities needed to guide and actively participate in local and state organizations.

Futures that Work: School to Career Pathways

North Carolinians will make decisions and adopt practices that implement effective resource protection and conservation.

Youth and adult program participants will make healthy food choices, achieve the recommended amount of physical activity and reduce risk factors for chronic diseases.

III. Relationship to County Government Objectives

Hertford County Cooperative Extension Service's has worked hard to keep a good relationship between County government and Board of Commissioners. The County Extension Director attends monthly Commissioners meetings and special group Department Head meetings, where reports on Extension programming is provided when appropriate. Throughout 2017 Hertford County Extension continued to model the 7 core values that county government identified as important characteristics all employees should demonstrate while serving the public, those being: accountability, customer service, leadership, teamwork, respect, integrity and professionalism. The County Extension Director and staff up holds these values in Extension programming in order to carry out the county government's standards. The County Manager and Board of Commissioner's also stress the importance of serving all Hertford County Citizens and being the lead county in the state for the services provided to our county. Hertford County Extension will continue to strive to reach this goal by delivering highly effective programs.

IV. Diversity Plan

NC Cooperative Extension's Hertford County Center is committed to employing a diverse staff and providing educational opportunities that will help improve the quality of life for all audiences including those that have traditionally been under-served. Programs are open to persons without regard to race, color, creed, national origin, religion, sex, age, disability and other dimensions of human diversity. All reasonable efforts are made to ensure accessibility including translation services for non-English speaking individuals and accommodations for the visually and hearing-impaired.

Hertford County's Extension staff works to serve all communities in the County through 4-H clubs and programming, healthy lifestyles and food safety programs, agricultural programs or in response to individual requests reaching under-served audiences.

V. 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 Hertford 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 Hertford 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, fact sheets, newsletters, videos, and home study kits that 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 Hertford County.

In Extension, success is defined as the extent to which our educational programs have made a difference in the lives of the citizens of Hertford County. Evaluation methods are the way we make those observations about first and foremost whether any changes occurred as a result our educational programs, and subsequently the significance of those changes. As an educational organization, the changes we seek focus on key outcomes such as the knowledge and skills participants gain from our programs. More specifically, in this plan, we are using quantitative research methods such as retrospective testing, pre and post tests and/or surveys to measure change in knowledge gained, the application of that knowledge, number of new skills developed, and types of new skills developed. Extension, as a results-oriented organization, is committed to also assessing the social, economic and/or environmental impact that our programs have on the individuals who participate, their families and communities and ultimately the county as a whole (i.e. true significance of the changes stemming from our programs). We plan to measure these impacts in both the long and short-term. In this annual plan (short-term), we have outlined financial impact and cost benefit analysis as our primary evaluation methods. Another value held in Extension is actively listening to and dialoguing with targeted learners. Therefore, this plan also includes qualitative evaluation methods such as testimonials from program participants, and interviews and focus groups with participants.

VI. Membership of Advisory Leadership System

FCS Advisory Committee
Pat Byrd
Lisa Newsome
Sheila Eley
Hope Eley



Agriculture Advisory Committee
Wiley Gillam
Johnny Powell
Jamison Eley
Ronald Gatling
4-H and Youth Advisory Committee
Joel McCormick
Sara Grace Briton
Sonya Ashe
Danelle Ashe
Chris Langston
Tiffany Lewis
Mikaeyla Lewis

Hertford County Advisory Council
Chris Langston
Sheila Eley
Johnny Powell
Pat Byrd
Danielle Ashe
Karen Berrymen
Kathy Van Roy
William Moore


Small Farms Advisory Committee
Johnny Powell
Kathy Van Roy
William Moore
Jamison Eley
Marvin Watford
Jackson Cumbo
Alice Horton
Ben Moses
Joseph Johnson
Emy Winstead
Avis Gray

VII. Staff Membership

Stephanie Parker-Helmkamp
Title: County Extension Director
Phone: (252) 358-7822
Email: stephanie_m_parker@ncsu.edu

Anassou Banna
Title: Area Agent, Small Farms Management
Phone: (252) 358-7822
Email: anassou_banna@ncsu.edu

Becky Castello
Title: County Extension Administrative Assistant
Phone: (252) 358-7822
Email: rebecca_castello@ncsu.edu

Candice Christian
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Consumer and Retail Food Safety
Phone: (919) 515-9148
Email: Candice_Christian@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: The overall goal of the Area Specialized Agents (ASAs) in Consumer & Retail Food Safety is to support FCS Agents in delivering timely and evidence-based food safety education and information to stakeholders in North Carolina.

Erin Eure
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Commercial Fruits & Vegetables
Phone: (252) 357-1400
Email: erin_eure@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Provides educational opportunities and technical support to commercial fruit and vegetable growers, agents, and industry in northeastern NC.

Steve Gabel
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Aquaculture
Phone: (252) 482-6585
Email: steve_gabel@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Responsible for aquaculture educational programs for the NC NE extension district.

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.

Lynette Johnston
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Food Safety
Phone: (919) 515-0303
Email: lynette_johnston@ncsu.edu

Danny Lauderdale
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Nursery and Greenhouse, Eastern Region
Phone: (252) 237-0111
Email: danny_lauderdale@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Provides programming to commercial ornamental nursery and greenhouse producers in eastern North Carolina.

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

Margaret Ross
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Poultry
Phone: (252) 670-8254
Email: margaret_ross@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Working with commercial poultry producers to assist in writing nutrient management plans and conducting educational programming.

Chip Simmons
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Food Safety
Phone: (919) 414-5632
Email: odsimmon@ncsu.edu

Scott Tilley
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Field Crops
Phone: (252) 793-4428
Email: scott_tilley@ncsu.edu

Vicki Wiggins
Title: Extension Agent, 4-H Youth Development
Phone: (252) 358-7822
Email: Vwiggins@ncat.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.

VIII. Contact Information

Hertford County Center
301 W Tryon St
Winton, NC 27986

Phone: (252) 358-7822
Fax: (252) 358-7880
URL: http://hertford.ces.ncsu.edu