2022 Annual Report

University of Maine Cooperative Extension Knox & Lincoln Counties

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Pear tree in bloom —Liz Stanley photo

Download a print-friendly copy of the 2022 Annual Report.

Table of Contents

Knox-Lincoln County Extension Association

Executive Committee

  • Aaron Englander, President
  • Craig Currie, Secretary
  • Jack Green, Treasurer
  • Dawn Jones
  • Wendy Roberts
  • Gail Varga
  • Brett Willard
  • Nancy Wood

UMaine Extension Knox-Lincoln Counties
377 Manktown Road
Waldoboro, ME 04572-5815
207.832.0343 or 800.244.2104 (in Maine)
Fax: 207.832.0377

UMaine Extension Knox-Lincoln Counties Staff

Extension Educator

yellow blossoms of Clintonia plant with its green leaves
Native Clintonia —Liz Stanley photo
  • Mark Hutchinson


  • Ellen Baker
  • Ruth Griffin
  • Marylou Cook
  • Ryan LeShane
  • Jennifer Doherty
  • Hannah Pennington
  • Heather Elowe
  • Brooke Sanborn
  • Gretchen Gee
  • Claudia Williamson

Community Education Assistants

  • Cindy Rogers
  • Liz Stanley

Administrative Specialist

  • Pamela Doherty
Knox-Lincoln Extension office
UMaine Cooperative Extension office in Waldoboro —Liz Stanley photo

University of Maine Cooperative Extension seeks volunteers to serve on the Knox-Lincoln Counties Executive Committee

UMaine Extension can only be successful with the help of county residents serving on the Executive Committee. Board members provide oversight and support to staff, as well as help promoting programs.

Knox-Lincoln Extension is one of the most active in the state providing a broad range of programs: 4-H youth development, assistance to commercial farmers and home gardeners, and in-home education for new parents.

Executive Committee members are asked to attend four two-hour meetings a year focusing on county programming, building maintenance, and
finances. Members can certainly follow their interests and become more involved in any of the county programs.

If you’re interested in UMaine Extension Programs and giving back to your community, serving on the Executive Committee is a great place to be! For more information, please contact Ryan LeShane 207.832.0343, in Maine 800.244.2104 or email: ryanleshane@maine.edu.

field covered with snow with mountains in the distance
Looking east from Clarry Hill Preserve in Union —Cindy Rogers photo

President’s Message

Dear Knox-Lincoln Cooperative Extension Community,

Happy Summer! This is my third year as President of the Knox-Lincoln Cooperative Extension Association Executive Committee (KLCEA-EC). It has been an honor and a pleasure to work with the staff, board members, and volunteers involved with KLCEA. As a farmer and educator at Maine Coast Heritage Trust’s Erickson Fields Preserve, I deeply value the work of University of Maine Cooperative Extension. I get to see the benefits of the services offered by Extension daily through our collaborations with Kids Can Grow, Master Gardener Volunteers, 4-H, and outreach with local farmers.

As we carefully move out of the Covid-19 pandemic, it has been great to reconnect in person, and see firsthand the impact Extension has on the community. I am proud of our resilience to make it through challenging times and continue Extension’s important work. From infant and early childhood support to K-12 youth development, climate change initiatives, technical support for home gardeners and commercial farmers, Master Gardener Volunteer projects, and programs for local youth at Blueberry Cove 4-H Camp and Learning Center, 4-H clubs and other collaborating sites, KLCEA is a true asset to the community.

Thank you to all the KLCEA Staff, Executive Committee (EC) members, volunteers and program participants who make Extension what it is: a community-based program that serves the greater good. Thank you to the University of Maine, and Knox and Lincoln Counties, whose tax funding supports the KLCEA facility and staff.

Special thanks to Agriculture Educator and Professor, Mark Hutchinson, who retired from Extension at the end of 2022 after 23 years of dedicated service. Based out of our Waldoboro office, Mark provided crucial technical support to local farmers, co-developed the Maine Compost School, and was a statewide, national, and international expert on composting. An essential part of our community, Mark will be greatly missed. We are currently in the hiring process for a Sustainable Agriculture and Farm Business Management Educator to serve Midcoast Maine (Knox, Lincoln, and Waldo Counties).

The EC committee oversees the budget, facility, vision, and program direction of KLCEA. We’re a volunteer committee that needs more members to support all the great work happening at KLCEA. If you are interested in joining the EC or being involved with the KLCEA as a volunteer or in any capacity, please contact our office for more information.

closeup of two yellow coreopsis flowers
Coreopsis —Liz Stanley photo

Please enjoy this report and you may be as amazed as I at all the great work going on at Knox-Lincoln Cooperative Extension.


Aaron Englander
KLCEA Executive Committee President
Maine Coast Heritage Trust
Erickson Fields Farm and Program Manager
Rockport, Maine


UMaine Extension Knox-Lincoln Counties Financial Resources

This graph illustrates the financial resources for programs offered, supported and managed from the Knox & Lincoln Counties office. Each year, Knox & Lincoln Counties tax dollars support UMaine Extension with physical office space, support staff salaries, office supplies, equipment and programming expenses. As a unique partnership among federal, state and county governments, UMaine Extension uses funding from Maine counties and the University to match and leverage support from the United States Department of Agriculture, other federal grantors, state agencies and private foundations. Each UMaine Extension county office is also part of a statewide organization and the national Extension system. Pie chart depicting Knox-Lincoln Extension Financial Resources Local Salaries & Benefits UMaine 58.6%, Prorated Support UMaine 31.3%, Logistical Support UMaine 1.7%, Animal Diagnostic Lab 1.0%, Local Programming 1.2%, Knox County Support 3.1%, Lincoln County Support 3.1%

4-H Youth Development

Knox-Lincoln 4-H Club Program

  • 30 youth members, 23 adult volunteers enrolled in 2022
  • The 4-H Farm-to-Fair Youth Helper scholarship program at Union Fair provided scholarships for two current members and one recent 4-H graduate. “Helpers” assist adult leaders and staff in the operation of the 4-H Farm-to-Fair agricultural exhibit at the fair. In return, funds are awarded for youth to attend programs such as National 4-H Trips, or to help with college expenses.
  • John Van Dis of Hurricane Island Center for Science and Leadership worked with the Rockport Public Library, while 4-H volunteer Carney McRae partnered with the Rockland Public Library, each delivering a five-week 4-H outreach program designed for youth 8 and up to learn about the life, science, and beauty of the Gulf of Maine, and the impacts of climate change through STEM learning activities, art, cooking, and exploration.

Blueberry Cove 4-H Camp & Learning Center

  • Blueberry Cove 4-H Camp & Learning Center in St. George hosted campers at full capacity in 2022.
  • Camp Director, Ryan LeShane continued to work with the school system in St. George to offer in-school and after school learning experiences for K-8 youth.
  • Ground was broken on a new 4-H Science Center on the grounds of the camp. Work is expected to be completed in the spring of 2023.

Information: ryan.leshane@maine.edu

Parent Education

Maine Families Home Visiting Program

a group of adults with children in arms or in strollers outside in a park setting
Group Connections walks the Rockland Boardwalk and tours the Farmers Market in June, 2022. —Maine Families Knox County photo
  • As part of a statewide network of Maine Families Home Visiting Programs, our team of seven parent educators provided 1,509 home, virtual and phone visits to 188 families living in Knox, Lincoln and Sagadahoc Counties and the Cumberland Towns of Brunswick, Harpswell, Freeport, Yarmouth, Cumberland and Falmouth.
  • In October 2022, our team earned Blue Ribbon Affiliate status, a prestigious logo including a blue ribbon witha symbol of a parent and baby in the centerendorsement from Parents as Teachers National Center, Inc. The endorsement makes us one of the top-performing home visiting affiliates within Parents as Teachers’ international network.
  • Families are positively impacted by Maine Families, which includes personalized visits, group connections, developmental and health screenings, as well as connections to community resources. This relationship-based program is designed to address public health priorities and support families with knowledge and resources to prepare children for a strong start in life and greater success in school.
  • Learn more about our Maine Families affiliate and see parent testimonials.

Information: jennifer.d.doherty@maine.edu

Home Horticulture

Master Gardener Volunteer Program

The 2022-2023 Maine Master Gardener Volunteer training is in-progress statewide with county cohort groups. Trainees receive self-paced material on UMaine’s learning platform and connect virtually to specialists and industry experts on each topic. Master Gardener Volunteers contribute to their communities in four focus areas:

  • Maine Harvest for Hunger: Teaching people how to grow food, donating produce from home and community gardens, gleaning at farms, and working directly with food pantries and food councils.
  • Ecological & Sustainable Landscapes: Teaching about best practices, native plants, invasive species, pollinator- and wildlife-friendly habitat, and climate change.
  • Youth & School Garden Programs: Working with teachers and students to discover gardening and Maine’s food system.
  • Educational Programming: Presenting talks, writing articles & creating educational materials.

Home Horticulture

  • UMaine Extension’s state-wide horticulture team developed multiple webinar series and videos featuring sustainable best practices for beginning and more advanced gardeners.
  • More than 400 client calls to the Knox-Lincoln Extension office and through our headquarters in Orono included requests for research-based information about plant diseases, plant ID, invasive insects and plants, native plants for the Maine Landscape and soil testing.

Information: elizabeth.stanley@maine.edu

Man standing cross-armed outside
Parker Gassett —Maine Sea Grant photo

Welcome Parker Gassett

As of 2023 Parker Gassett, Marine Extension Associate with Maine Sea Grant has a partial appointment with Cooperative Extension as well. Parker’s new affiliation with Extension will allow him to contribute to operational roles in the Knox-Lincoln office and work with the Knox-Lincoln Cooperative Extension Association Executive Committee.

Parker is the marine and coastal community specialist with the Maine Climate Science Information Exchange (MCSIE) which “accelerates climate solutions by strengthening networks of research and decision-making in support of Maine Won’t Wait and its implementation.” Since 2017 he has been a co-coordinator of the Climate Change Adaptation Providers Network, working to build climate change resilience through community-based efforts throughout the State. As a staff member for Maine Sea Grant, MCSIE, and Cooperative Extension Parker brings together best practices for climate change adaptation at a local scale and supports communities and resource managers in implementing science-based strategies for resilience.

Information: parker.gassett@maine.edu

Commercial Agriculture

  • According to the latest USDA Agricultural Survey Knox and Lincoln counties have over 50,000 acres of land in agricultural production. On this land farmers produce forages, livestock, vegetables, and fruits for local and regional use.
  • In 2022, Cooperative Extension assisted growers by providing timely research and information on current issues such as High Pathogenic Avian Influenza affecting poultry, Spotted Wing Drosophila affecting small fruit, Spotted Lanternfly in ornamentals, and updates on pesticides and much more.
  • Cooperative Extension offered educational programming in carcass management, vegetable and small fruit
    production and low bush blueberry production.
  • Extension staff provided hundreds of consultations on soil and forage analysis to clients throughout the region. Cooperative Extension continues to be an important resource for local commercial agriculture.

Congratulations Mark!

Man sitting in rocking chair on front porch
Mark Hutchinson —Liz Stanley photo

Mark Hutchinson retired from the University of Maine Cooperative Extension January, 2023 after 23 years of service. Mark’s work exemplified research, scholarship, and creative activity that resulted in national and international recognition for the University of Maine, and important outcomes for his students, clients, and profession. He was highly respected for his work in educational programs in commercial agriculture production, and as an internationally recognized authority on carcass mortality management. Mark extended his horticultural education programs to a unique, underserved offender population within the Maine State Prison, and he authored or partnered with others in more than $3.3 million in funding in support of his programs. He was a sought-after graduate advisor, mentor, colleague, and collaborator.

Many of you have had the pleasure to learn from and work with Mark, whose activities over the years have been diverse and impactful. His leadership and wisdom will be truly missed at the Knox Lincoln County Extension office. Thank you, Mark! We hope you find joy in your new adventures.

Jon Prichard
Program Administrator
University of Maine Cooperative Extension

woodland trees surrounding a pond in autumn with leaves floating on the surface
Woodland pond in Union —Cindy Rogers photo

The County Extension Act

The County Extension Act explains the role of county government in funding local Extension offices.

Cooperative Extension work shall consist of the giving of practical demonstrations in agriculture and natural resources, youth development, and home economics and community life and imparting information on those subjects through field demonstrations, publications and otherwise. For the purpose of carrying out this chapter, there may be created in each county or combination of two counties within the State an organization known as a “county extension association,” and its services available to all residents of a county. The county extension is viewed as a unique and important educational program of county government. The executive committee of each county extension association shall prepare an annual budget as requested, showing in detail its estimate of the amount of money to be expended under this chapter within the county or counties for the fiscal year. The executive committee shall submit to the board of county commissioners on a date requested by the county commissioners, and the county commissioners may, if they deem it justifiable, adopt an appropriate budget for the county extension program and levy a tax therefore. The amount thus raised by direct taxation within any county or combination of counties for the purposes of this chapter shall be used for the salaries of clerks, provision of office space, supplies, equipment, postage, telephone, a contribution toward the salaries of county educators and such other expenses as necessary to maintain an effective county extension program.1

Pink blossoms of a rhodora plant
Native rhodora —Liz Stanley photo

1Excerpted from Title 7, Chapter 7 of the Maine Revised Statutes, §191–§195.

Additional Resources

University of Maine Cooperative Extension 2022 Annual Report

Garden & Yard Page for Home Gardeners





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