2019 New Hanover County Program Impact Report

Approved: January 21, 2020

I. Executive Summary

The great work of New Hanover County Cooperative Extension continued in 2019 in spite of a few unexpected setbacks. Our FCS agent serving Brunswick, New Hanover and Pender counties resigned from her position. The demands of serving three counties was unsustainable, our request for New Hanover County funding for 1/3 of a single county position beginning FY19-20 was unsuccessful. (Our Extension Advisory Council is supporting a new request for the county to fund 2/3 of a single county FCS agent in FY20-21.)

The County Director experienced two serious health issues in 2019, both resulting in hospitalizations. In spite of the work interruptions, significant progress was made in the community development arenas of work on tree canopy issues, storm resilience, food systems improvement and stormwater management education. Relationships with over 35 community organizations were forged resulting in multiple collaborative efforts throughout the year. Tree plantings, increased sales at farmers market, construction of stormwater management models and programs on sustainable landscapes were results.

The 4-H program continued to grow, with the embryology program now offered in all nine public elementary schools in New Hanover County. Summer camps and clubs engaged additional youth as did after school programs. The Empower Youth and Families program successfully completed two cohorts, with a third beginning this winter. Volunteer leader and youth recruitment efforts for 4-H continue.

The consumer horticulture program remains the first in the state in volunteer hours. The Extension Master Gardener Volunteer Association hosted another record-breaking plant sale, providing funds for important community grant applications. The stellar reputation of the MG training is evidenced by the current class with 80+ applications, narrowed to 35 student participants for this winter/spring 2020 class.

New Hanover County hosted a very successful student intern in 2019, supporting the Extension functions of assisting with Donation Station, SNAP benefits/RAFI Double Bucks, Farm Tour planning, FEMA Property evaluations for New Hanover County Parks & Gardens, and "Vacation Veggies".

The partnership with NHC Parks & Gardens for grounds maintenance at our center's Arboretum is progressing well. A new Lead Technician has successfully transitioned into the challenging role of meeting the educational role of the garden, coordinating with the many volunteers for maintenance tasks, supporting the fundraising event functions of the Friends of the Arboretum, and leading his team.

The Ability Garden can look back on a successful year of therapeutic horticulture programming, and look forward to becoming a model for urban extension centers with the new agent position.

The Friends of the Arboretum hosted two annual fundraising events in 2019 and plan some slight modifications for the events in 2020. The Board is developing a refined focus on fundraising.

Some additional accomplishments and recognition for our center this year include hosting the N.C. Cooperative Extension State Advisory Council, facilitating a group visit to the capital for Ag Awareness Day, being awarded a Tree Award by the Wilmington Tree Commission and honored with a local beautification award by the Cape Fear Garden Club.

II. County Background

New Hanover County encompasses the city of Wilmington and the towns of Carolina Beach, Wrightsville Beach, Kure Beach and Castle Hayne. Roughly 50% of the total population of 227,000 lives within the Wilmington city limits. New Hanover is North Carolina’s second smallest county in geographic area at 191 square miles. Population increases of more than 13% annually are expected through 2030.

As might be expected 98% of the population is considered urban with a small rural population in the Castle Hayne area on the north side of the county.

The region’s popularity as a retirement destination is reflected by 22% of the population being over 60 years old.

Service businesses tied to housing and commercial building are busy again with the area's growth. Current unemployment numbers hover around 4%.

According to the New Hanover County Tourism Development Authority, visitors during 2017 had a $578 million impact on the local economy which represents a 4.3% increase from the previous year. Tourism supports over 6300 local jobs.

Cooperative Extension’s county budget has changed to reflect the transfer of two part-time NCSU employees previously working on the grounds of the Arboretum to NHC Parks and Gardens budget. A new Landscape Technician position was added by the Parks & Gardens team to oversee the garden maintenance in cooperation with the new Extension Director. Additional funds will be requested for FY 2020 - 2021 to support a single or two county FCS agent. Currently, the FCS agent is serving three counties and is not financially supported by NHC.

New Hanover County adopted a new strategic plan for 2018 - 2023, with three focus areas: 1) Intelligent Growth and Economic Development, 2) Superior Education & Workforce, and 3) Superior Public Health & Safety. Extension programming will be tailored in support of each of these objectives to serve our citizens. In particular, 4-H and Family and Consumer Science and the County Extension Director are each engaged in an opioid addiction prevention initiative, Empowering Youth and Families Program for 2019, partnering with the county's Public Health, Community Services, New Hanover Regional Medical Center and UNCW Public Health department.

Continuing development in all Extension disciplines offer exciting opportunities related to the new strategic plan as well as traditional educational programs.

III. Objectives to Address the Cooperative Extension Long Range Plan

Our family and consumer sciences programs improve the well-being of individuals, families, and communities.

Our plant production programs improve production, profitability, and sustainability of the agriculture sector.

Value* Outcome Description
225Number of pesticide applicators receiving continuing education credits
96Number of pesticide credit hours provided
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.
Value* Impact Description
100Number of farmers, employees or family members adopting regular use of appropriate PPE following AgriSafe or Certified Safe Farm participation
150Number of crop (all plant systems) producers adopting best management practices, including those practices related to nutrient management, conservation, production, cultivars, pest management (weeds, diseases, insects), business management, and marketing
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.

Our community development programs build strong and thriving communities.

Value* Impact Description
96546Value of grants received by organizations, communities, or Extension where Extension was instrumental in initiating, facilitating, or providing technical assistant in the development of the grants to support community or economic development work
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.

Our 4-H youth development programs grow the skills young people need to succeed in life and career.

Value* Outcome Description
19Number of teachers trained in 4-H STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) curriculum
966Number of youth (students) increasing knowledge in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math)
554Total number of female participants in STEM program
46Number of high school age youth (students) participating as members of 4-H clubs
1Number of high school age youth (students) participating as members in 4-H clubs that have dropped out of high school
337Number of youth increasing knowledge of life skills
56Number of children/youth who improved knowledge of local food and agricultural systems.
87Number of youth increasing/improving knowledge, attitudes, skills, and/or aspirations regarding leadership
220Number of youth demonstrating increased knowledge of natural resources and environmental issues
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.
Value* Impact Description
23Number of teachers using 4-H STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math) curriculum in their classrooms
79Number of youth (students) gaining career / employability skills
35Number of youth (students) gaining entrepreneurship skills
120Number of youth using effective life skills
85Number of youth willing to participate in conservation actions
15Number of youth increasing their physical activity
8Number of youth volunteers serving in new or expanded roles within Extension
9Number of youth volunteers serving in new or expanded roles beyond Extension, including community boards and task forces
14Number of youth assuming new/expanded leadership roles in the community
10Number of youth increasing their fruit and vegetable consumption
18Number of youth who grow food in school gardens.
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.

Our natural resource and environmental programs conserve our precious natural resources and maintain a clean and healthy environment.

Value* Outcome Description
2088Number of participants willing to participate in conservation actions (such as rain gardens, wildlife management, conservation easements, land trusts, generational planning, etc.)
68Number of participants increasing their knowledge about best management practices (including storm water systems, septic system maintenance, erosion control, rain gardens, forestry, etc.)
8200Number of adults demonstrating increased knowledge of natural resources and environmental issues
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.
Value* Impact Description
9000Number of participants implementing extension-recommended practices to conserve water use and protect water quality
3000Number of participants that adopted recommended agroecosystem adaption strategies for production agriculture or natural resource management, including for invasive species, pest management, pollutant loads, and wetlands.
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.

Our consumer horticulture programs teach families and communities about environmentally friendly methods for gardening and controlling pests.

Value* Outcome Description
523Number of individuals who gain knowledge or acquire skills related to vegetable/fruit gardening
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.
Value* Impact Description
24Number of individuals who grow food in community gardens.
37Number of individuals who begin home food production by starting a vegetable and/or fruit garden
10Number of individuals who begin home food production by starting to raise backyard livestock.
7200Number of participants who use extension-recommended best management practices in landscapes, turf, and gardens, including pest (insect, weed, disease, wildlife) and soil management
9021Number of participants selecting appropriate landscape plants (adapted, drought tolerant, appropriate size, etc.)
45Number of participants growing food for home consumption
7000Number of participants adopting composting
* Note: Values may include numbers from multi-county efforts.

Our food safety and nutrition programs create a safer and more sustainable food supply and improve the health and nutrition of individuals, families, and our communities.

IV. Number of Contacts Made by Extension

Type of ContactNumber
Face-to-face* 45,563
Non face-to-face** 2,520,966
Total by Extension staff in 2019 2,566,529
* Face-to-face contacts include contacts that Extension personnel make directly with individuals through one-on-one visits, meetings, and other activities where staff members work directly with individuals.
** Non face-to-face contacts include contacts that Extension personnel make indirectly with individuals by telephone, email, newsletters, news articles, radio, television, and other means.

V. Designated Grants Received by Extension

Type of GrantAmount
Contracts/Grants $867,916.00
Gifts/Donations $13,671.00
In-Kind Grants/Donations $640.00
United Way/Foundations $0.00
User Fees $9,380.00
Total $891,607.00

VI. Volunteer Involvement in Extension Programs

Number of Volunteers* Number of Volunteer Hours Known client contacts by volunteers Dollar Value at 25.43
4-H 113 616 288 $ 15,665.00
Extension Master Gardener 1,516 16869 11402 $ 428,979.00
Extension Master Food Volunteers 40 213 0 $ 5,417.00
Other: Food & Nutrition 3 1440 0 $ 36,619.00
Total: 1672 19138 11690 $ 486,679.00
* The number of volunteers reflects the overall number of volunteers for multiple events.

VII. Membership of Advisory Leadership System

New Hanover County Cooperative Extension Advisory Council
Carol Bales
Nathan Bales
Qailinn Bowen
Clayton Hamerski
Colleen Higgins
Susan Jewell
Mary McKernan
Shirley Melito
Charles Mincey
Beth Ann Scisco
Christy Spivey
Roselyn Upchurch
William Walsh
Scott Winslow
Gabriella deSouza
Nicolas Field
4-H Advisory Council
Liz Sharpe
Ralph Mead
Tina Sharpe
Melissa Hight
John Lenfestey
Kitty Bass
Consumer Horticulture Advisory Committee
Sherrel Bunn
Kathy Savage
Rita Burgess
Roy Van Teyens
Jay Denmark

Ability Garden Advisory Council
Larry Sackett
Karen Root
Lorraine Perry
Denise Miller
Candy Ashton
Lona Popovic (Staff)
Heather Kelejian (Staff)
Carolina Sotomayor
Dagmar Cooley
Eva Elmore
Friends of the Arboretum
Betty Arlant
Carolyn Thomas
Karen Root
John Ranalli
Marie Warren
Carol Bales
Josh Rickards
Jeffrey Sackrison
Stephen Mahaffey
Sandra Jackson
Sherrel Bunn
Denise Aikeman
Diana Kraus-Anderson
Laura McCabe

VIII. Staff Membership

Lloyd Singleton
Title: County Extension Director, Commercial Horticulture - Landscape
Phone: (910) 798-7666
Email: losingle@ncsu.edu

Haylee Allen
Title: Program Assistant, Empowering Youth and Families Program
Phone: (910) 253-2610
Email: hballen2@ncsu.edu

Susan Brown
Title: Extension Agent, Consumer Horticulture
Phone: (910) 798-7674
Email: susan_brown@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Consumer Horticulture

Deborah Chappell
Title: Program Coordinator - EMFV
Phone: (910) 798-7660
Email: dgchappe@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Providing leadership, opportunities and training for Extension Master Food Volunteers in the county. Connecting county extension with other community partners. Providing food,nutrition and health educational programs to community members.

Breyana Davis
Title: SNAP-Ed Steps to Health, Nutrition Educator
Email: bddavis5@ncsu.edu

Marti Day
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Dairy
Phone: (919) 542-8202
Email: marti_day@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Responsible for educational programs for dairy farmers, youth with an interest in dairy projects and the general public with an interest in dairy foods and the dairy industry.

Danyce Dicks
Title: County Extension Support Specialist - Consumer Horticulture, Pesticide Education
Phone: (910) 798-7662
Email: danyce_dicks@ncsu.edu

J. Scott Enroughty
Title: Extension Agent, 4-H Youth Development
Phone: (910) 798-7660
Email: scott_enroughty@ncsu.edu

Mike Frinsko
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Aquaculture
Phone: (252) 448-9621
Email: mofrinsk@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Provide technical training and assistance to commercial aquaculture producers in the Southeast 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.

Roben Jarrett
Title: County Extension Administrative Assistant, Agriculture - Commercial Horticulture
Phone: (910) 798-7671
Email: roben_jarrett@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Admistrative Assistant to County Dorector

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

Heather Kelejian
Title: Extension Agent, Agriculture - Therapeutic Horticulture
Phone: (910) 798-7682
Email: heather_kelejian@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Director of therapeutic gardeing program, including program development and implementation, setting program budget, fundraising and training staff and volunteers.

Colby Lambert
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Forestry
Phone: (910) 814-6041
Email: colby_lambert@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Provides educational opportunities and technical support to forest landowners, agents, and forest industry in eastern North Carolina.

Danny Lauderdale
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Ornamental 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.

Lori McBryde
Title: Area 4-H Agent, East Region
Phone: (919) 989-5380
Email: lori_mcbryde@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Provide support the Eastern 34 Counties of the Northeast and Southeast Districts in 4-H Youth Development.

Stephanie McDonald-Murray
Title: Regional Nutrition Extension Associate - Southeast EFNEP and SNAP-Ed
Phone: (910) 296-2143
Email: stephanie_mcdonald@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Job Description: Provides programmatic supervision to the EFNEP program in the South East District.

Amy Mead
Title: Program Associate, Volunteer Coordinator
Phone: (910) 798-7660
Email: afmead@ncsu.edu

Angela Pearsall
Title: Horticulture Program Assistant
Phone: (910) 798-7670
Email: apearsa@ncsu.edu

Marge Porrazzo
Title: Receptionist, N.C. Cooperative Extension, New Hanover County
Phone: (910) 798-7660
Email: marge_porrazzo@ncsu.edu

Diana Rashash
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Water Quality/Waste Management
Phone: (910) 455-5873
Email: diana_rashash@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Water and wastewater issues of all types: stormwater, aquatic weed ID & control, water quality & quantity, septic systems, animal waste, land application of wastewater, environment & sustainability, climate, etc.

Ashley Robbins
Title: Area Specialized Agent - Dairy
Phone: (919) 542-8203
Email: ashley_robbins@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Marti Day and I are the Area Specialized Dairy Agents - the county-based arm of the Cooperative Extension Dairy Team. We are out here in the counties to help you set and reach your farm, family and business goals. We have collaborative expertise in the areas of Waste Management, Udder Health, Cow Comfort, Nutrition and Forage Management with specialties in (Ashley)Reproduction, Records Management, Animal Health and (Marti)Alternative Markets, Organic Dairy, Grazing Management, and On-farm Processing. We hope to provide comprehensive educational programs for our farmers, consumers and youth for every county across the state. We are here for you by phone, email or text and look forward to working with you!

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.

Marianne Schroeder
Title: County Extension Support Specialist - Horticulture, Consumer Horticulture
Phone: (910) 798-7667
Email: mmschroe@ncsu.edu

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

Alyssa Spence
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agromedicine, Farm Health & Safety
Phone: (252) 527-2191
Email: arramsey@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: I work with the NCSU Applied Ecology-Toxicology & Agromedicine Department to serve the18 counties in the Southeast District, providing health/safety resources and programming to field agents in this area.

Wesley Stallings
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture- Grain Crops
Phone: (910) 455-5873
Email: wcstalli@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Agriculture-Grain Crops

Allan Thornton
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Agriculture - Commercial Vegetables and Fruits
Phone: (910) 592-7161
Email: allan_thornton@ncsu.edu
Brief Job Description: Vegetable Extension Specialist. Conducts Extension and applied research programs for commercial vegetable and fruit growers and agents in eastern North Carolina.

Mitch Woodward
Title: Area Specialized Agent, Watersheds and Water Quality
Phone: (919) 414-3873
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

New Hanover County Center
6206 Oleander Dr
Wilmington, NC 28403

Phone: (910) 798-7660
Fax: (910) 798-7678
URL: http://newhanover.ces.ncsu.edu