Extension Leadership Team Meeting Minutes March 14, 2022

Extension Leadership Team Meeting Minutes
March 14, 2022
Virtual Meeting 8:30-10:30 AM

Facilitator: Fran Sulinski
Note taker: Jon Prichard

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 IDI Team met with the ELT to present on the Maine 4-H IDI Core Team and the background, intervention, and results of the Intercultural Development Inventory (IDI) project funded through the Libra Diversity Visiting Professor project.The IDI project engaged 25 UMaine 4-H & EFNEP staff in a robust eight month professional development experience with the intention of increasing the capacity of UMaine staff to apply culturally competent practices in their work. The IDI Core Team helped ELT members to recognize the IDI process and how it helps UMaine Extension build the capacity of our staff to do Extension work. This was a significant effort with rewarding results.  The team would like to continue this work and have submitted a budget for consideration to provide this opportunity to more Extension staff in the next three years.

ELT Decision Making & Approvals for Positions

The ELT discussed decision-making and approvals for positions.

4-H Community Education Assistant (CEA) in Waldo County

The ELT agreed to refill in Waldo County the 4-H CEA position that became vacant following a recent resignation.

Meeting with EC Presidents and Staff Liaisons in March

The ELT will meet with Extension Association Presidents and Staff Liaisons on Wednesday, March 16 at 6 pm.

Extension Association Presidents, Extension Leadership Team and Staff Liaisons, March 16, 2022 6 pm – 7:30 pm – Via Zoom

  • Welcome and thanks from Dean Hannah Carter  15min

(Attendees chat in their Name and Affiliation)

  • Highlights of Recent and Upcoming Extension Work  30 min
  • Sharing the Highlights Sent in by Extension Association Presidents 15 min
  • Discussion, Comments and Questions

Initial questions from Extension Association Presidents

  • Our group would love some tips on recruiting new members.
  • How are the association offices handling the Covid issues i.e. ventilation changes, air purifiers, reception areas?
  • A clarification of how executive committees interact with staff, and the role of the county coordinator in serving as liaison between the board and administration. I guess a clarification of the role of the county extension association and the county coordinator.

Transitional Reassignment of County Supervision and Responsibilities

With Dick’s transition back to faculty, we will need to assign supervision of Aroostook, Waldo and York counties. The ELT will be having a larger discussion in the future on county supervision. For the short term these counties will be reassigned as follows:

  • Aroostook – Jim Dill
  • Waldo – Jon Prichard
  • York – Tori Jackson

PAC Follow-up on Part-time PA involvement at PAC meetings.

After surveying PAC members, the majority feel part-time PAs should not be involved with full meetings. However, there will be more discussion on this and the PAC will be revisiting to find appropriate ways to include these PAs.


Salesforce Update

Salesforce is live! Over the coming weeks, Monica Palmer, CRM System Professional, will be meeting with several groups to discuss needs that may be addressed by the CRM. An initial project has not yet been identified, but several Extension members have stepped forward with interest in being early adopters.

  • Initial setup of the CRM is underway. This includes setting up user permissions and duplicate matching rules, customizing screens and navigation, building basic automations (i.e. looking up a person’s County using their Zip Code), evaluating data sources by mapping how they are handled in the CRM (please see working diagram below) and designing the data hierarchy. Many individuals are helping in the effort to define fields and values to ensure the CRM is compliant and will accommodate all of our groups and services.
  • Evaluation of an Extension-wide email tool has begun. This will result in one, fully supported email platform for all of Extension. The top considerations are Pardot (a Salesforce product) and a vastly upgraded and revamped version of Mailchimp. Once chosen, implementation will require consolidation of users and mailing lists from all units, migration of templates and other content assets and training on the chosen tool, all of which will be enthusiastically supported by Monica Palmer.
  • Evaluations of workshop/event tools, form building tools, portal tools and ticket management options have also started.
  • The C&M Team will be trialing a Project Management app for Salesforce to see if it will help them organize incoming requests and projects.

Hiring New Staff – Search Process and Support

When planning to hire a new staff member, please get in touch with Fran Sulinski and Beth Hawkyard before you develop a job description. They will help with a number of aspects of the search, one being a job description template. Using a template, and the other support from Fran and Beth will make the search process more efficient.

Search Updates

4-H Youth Development Professional – Aroostook – position offered, not accepted
Assistant Professor of Sustainable Ag/Dairy Forage – Preparing for HireTouch
Agricultural Engineer Professional – Interviewing
CRM Professional – Monica Palmer hired
Maine West Education Director – Bryant Pond 4-H Learning Center – Beth Clarke hired
Marketing and Communications Director – Melissa Arndt hired
Master Gardener Volunteer Manager – Mary Wicklund hired
Program Coordinator (2 positions) – Blueberry Cove and Tanglewood – Advertising
Statewide Small Business Educator & Assistant Extension Professor – Failed Search/Preparing updated JD for HireTouch
Sustainable Ag and Horticulture Professional – Aroostook – Search Committee formed
Sustainable Ag and Horticulture Professional – Franklin – Posted
Sustainable Ag and Horticulture Professional – Somerset – Posted

2022 ELT Meeting Dates

Dates Facilitator Notes Location
April 11 Prichard Phelps/Bolton Virtual
April 21 Spring Retreat  8 AM – 3 PM UMA
May 9 Phelps Scott Virtual
June 13 Scott Sulinski Virtual
July 11 Sulinski Arndt Virtual
August 8 Arndt Bailey Virtual
September 12 Bailey Bolton Virtual
October 11 Bolton Carter Virtual
October 20 Fall Retreat 10 AM – 2 PM TBD
November 14 Carter Dill Virtual
December 12 Dill Harrington Virtual