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Reflections on the Past Year and What Lies Ahead

Nearly Twelve O'clock Midnight,New Year Concept.


As 2018 comes to a close, the Extension Community Development team wishes you a new year filled with health, happiness and spectacular success. Enjoy reading our team’s reflections on the past year and what lies ahead.

Michael Wilcox, Assistant Program Leader Our 2018 turned out to be filled with successes, challenges and exciting new possibilities. Our Extension Community Development family has welcomed some new members and wished others well as they pursued new adventures in retirement. As our team continues to evolve, programmatically and personnel-wise, I am looking forward to supporting you in any way that I can. We should be proud of our collective impact this year strive to take advantage of every opportunity in 2019.

Dee Kleier, Franklin County educator As a new educator, I have really enjoyed connecting my community with the exciting opportunities the Purdue Extension Community Development has to offer. In 2019, I’m looking forward to further meeting my community’s needs and interests and getting to know better the many wonderful people working to empower communities across Indiana.

Kristi Whitacre, Vigo County educator 2018 was a chance for me to grow by learning and teaching both Facilitative Leadership and Manufacturing Skills for Success. I’m looking forward to all the learning opportunities that the new Fellows program can provide and hope to connect with many educators I don’t get to work with often.

Janet Reed, Lake County educator During 2018, I grew closer to accepting that I can only do what I can do with the help of those around me. I’m personally working on not comparing my work to others and accepting the “gifts” around me. I’m truly looking forward to working with a new CD co-worker in Lake County.

Tamara Ogle, regional educator I’m excited to see a lot of the work of the Purdue Land Use Team really roll out to communities in 2019.  This year has been a reminder of how much time and hard work goes into curriculum development and program planning and next year it will be neat to see American Citizen Planner and other land use programs and resources come to fruition.

Heather Strohm, regional educator It is time to say goodbye to 2018 with my head held high. A year of business success in Purdue. Community obstacles successfully navigated and achieved to create greater impact. Thank you for the growth opportunities that God placed in my path.

Embracing 2019 will hold much more excitement as Purdue Extension continues to pioneer business development across the state as well as establishing measureable impact with companies. New relationships and engagements will be forged to build bridges that lead to community development in sustainability and economic development.

John Hawley, Dearborn County educator 2018 was my first full-year working with Purdue Extension in Dearborn County. I am proud of the programming and services we brought to county residents and the impacts they made, especially On-Local Government. I am looking forward to many more years of great work with colleagues and residents!

Kris Parker, regional educator Looking back: 2018 was a productive year for Purdue Extension Community Development, with a record number of programs delivered for Beginner’s Guide to Grant Writing, Navigating Difference, and Facilitative Leadership, and several new Community Leadership Programs in the works. What I observe from that is that we collaborating with educators from all program areas to meet emerging community needs in an increasingly efficient way.

I think 2019 will be even more productive for each of these programs, as we hit our full stride. I’m looking forward to new conversations about race issues and racism in Indiana communities through Coming Together for Racial Understanding. Personally, I plan to get my schedule more tightly organized, so that I can manage teams more effectively with less stress.

Amanda Galloway, Tippecanoe County educator 2018 was a year for change for me, both personally and professionally. As I embark on this new journey in CD, I am so grateful for the chance to learn and grow in this new focus area. I look forward to gaining more connections in 2019 in my community and across the state and living each day with gratitude for the opportunities I have been given.

Bill Horan, Wells County educator Reflecting on this year and plans for the next, I am excited to be involved in establishing a new community garden. Our Master Gardeners, along with many other community partners, will be collaborating on this project. And thanks to our Community Foundation, we have funds to get us started with our big shopping list.

Gina Anderson, Floyd County educator As I look back on 2018, it amazes me how many people were reached through our Extension programs. As 2019, comes closer, I am looking forward to some new programs and new community efforts that will be taking place that will have a positive impact on our community.

Steve Yoder, regional educator In 2019, I plan to connect with more of my CD colleagues in other states to broaden my knowledge of similar types of programming taking place across the country.

Jeff Pell, Hendricks County educator Reflecting on my past year in Extension, I realize how important communication is to a successful program.  Creating a cohesive environment that allows individuals to share, build and utilize the skill sets that each individual brings to the table is essential.  I am looking forward to my new role in Hendricks County.  Within the next year, I will strive to meet the needs of the community and create opportunities that will build leadership, quality of life and community development.  I am also excited to work with a new set of Extension staff and colleagues.

Mary Foell, La Porte  County educator This past year has brought me flexibility in programming, developing key contacts, and cultivating communities for a better tomorrow. This year also has been a year of growth both personally and professionally.

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