Extension Leadership Team Meeting Minutes December 11, 2020

Extension Leadership Team Meeting Minutes
December 11, 2020
Virtual Meeting (9:00 AM – 12:00 PM)

Facilitator: Hannah Carter
Note taker: Fran Sulinski

Please note: Due to the confidentiality and sensitivity of some agenda items, these ELT minutes do not represent the full content of each meeting.


The Extension Connections with President Ferrini-Munday and Provost Volin was well attended and well received. The fact that they took the time to be with Extension staff and expressed sincere positive feelings toward our work was uplifting.

4-H Camp and Learning Centers Update

The 4-H Learning Center team has been hard at work on grant and contract-funded programming. Significant developments include the acquisition of programming and operating support grants from the Onion Foundation, and the kickoff of the AFRI project. A spring proposal to the Northern Border Regional Commission was funded last month. Expenses are limited to absolute necessities and are being paid from gift accounts whenever possible.

The 4-H Centers are continuing to play a prominent role with both the Black Bear PAWS (deferred students) and OPTIONS (first year experiential orientation) programs this winter, and next summer-fall.  Extension and Maine Bound pitched expanded OPTIONS programming to the Dean’s Council in October, which was well-received. In partnership with the UMaine Foundation and 4-H Foundation, as well as the 4-H Center boards, annual appeal letters have all gone out. Small-scale fundraisers such as the Thanksgiving Day 5K “Wobble Gobble” race (held virtually this year) continue to generate a trickle of external funds, and 4-H Camp staff are managing several current grant projects in various stages.

The ELT wants to thank the camp staff members who, in the face of challenges of the pandemic, have innovated, acquired new funding, and persevered.


Activities that Would Not be Remote in the Event of a Civic Stay at Home Order

The Extension list would be the same activities that were approved during the March remote work order. Those include the DRL lab services and the food service authority.

Extension Salary Offset

There were requests to use more than the 50% salary offset to help support current work which allows for the staff person to participate more fully in different grant funded projects without neglecting current work. Rather than changing the policy, if staff need to utilize more than the 50% salary offset they can come to the ELT to ask for an exception. To do so, they should either utilize the independent proposal process or ask their PA to bring the request to the ELT.

Increase in Social Media Support

The ELT agreed to expand our social media presence by adding hours to Lynne Holland’s current appointment. Lynne has done a great job, and we are confident that additional hours will further enhance our social media presence.

ELT Meeting Dates for 2021

The ELT scheduled future meeting dates.


SalesForce Update and Goals

After multiple meetings with UMS:IT and a demonstration of the SalesForce CRM and its capacity we are poised to move ahead with a planning process that will result in implementation, hopefully within the next year.  The process will be governed by a master planning document that will clarify goals and guide the team.  The ELT expressed their thoughts about high-level goals for the project and confidence that an advanced CRM will benefit Extension. Appreciation to Dennis and the Communication Team who are involved in preparing for the implementation of the system.


Faculty Laptop Incentive Program

UMS:IT has announced that there will be a Faculty Laptop Incentive Program this year. For Extension, we will proceed as we have in previous years and include professional staff. Michele Lodgek will send out the ‘request for proposals’ soon and administer the applications.

Announcements & Congratulations

Video Projects: Here is an example of one of our funded video projects. The overall video project was slowed down a bit due to Covid, and therefore a few more videos are still in process. Stay tuned!  HERE

Congratulations Melanie Bryan on the award and conditional contract of $243,000 from the Maine Children’s Trust so that UMaine Extension can continue to administer and deliver the Maine Families parenting education program in Waldo County.

Congratulations to Jennifer Doherty on the award and conditional contract of $560,000 from the Maine Children’s Trust, so that the Parent Program of Mid-Coast Maine in partnership with UMaine Extension can continue to administer and deliver the Maine Families parenting education program in Knox, Lincoln and Sagadahoc counties, and now expanding to serve northern Cumberland County (Brunswick, Cumberland, Falmouth, Freeport, Harpswell and Yarmouth).

Congratulations to Jeffrey Colpitts on the award of $20,000 from the Onion Foundation to offset the wages of professionals at 4-H Camps to support public schools in pandemic-related educational activities.

Improving Collaboration and Cooperation for Organization-wide Initiatives

This is a reminder to staff and organizational committees that Extension administration is here to support and partner with you and we can do so in a myriad of ways.  For example, when you are involved in developing organization-wide training or working on financial components of grant proposals or programs, collaboration and cooperation with the appropriate administrator will ensure that we pool our efforts and funds efficiently.

Search Updates

Administrative Specialist CL2 (PT) (Somerset) – Interviewing
Assistant Extension Professor and Fish Nutrition Specialist – Advertising

2021 ELT Meeting Dates

Meetings are from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm, unless otherwise noted

Dates Facilitator Notes Location
January 4 Sulinski Phelps Virtual (8:30-11:30)
January 25 Phelps Carter Virtual (8:30-11:30)
February 25 Carter Prichard Virtual (1:00-4:30)