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Posts Tagged: Barbara Allen-Diaz

UC ANR rebuilds its academic staff

Barbara Allen-Diaz, left, and Chris Greer spoke with AgAlert about their efforts to rebuild the ranks of UC Cooperative Extension academics.
By hiring 68 new UC Cooperative Extension advisors and specialists since 2010 - and with 23 positions being actively recruited plus more planned - UC leaders are reversing a downward trend in the number of UCCE academic staff, reported Ching Lee in AgAlert.

Barbara Allen-Diaz, vice president of UC Agriculture and Natural Resources, noted in the story that 2013 was the first time in recent years that UC hired more Cooperative Extension faculty than had retired. In December, she approved hiring of another 29 advisors and 16 specialists for the 2015-16 cycle.

"So we turned the corner for the first time in this long downward spiral," she said. "My goal is to continue to rebuild the footprint of Cooperative Extension."

Lee also interviewed UCCE vice provost Chris Greer, who said he expects ANR to end 2015 with a net gain of academics.

"It's not huge leaps and bounds; it's a small gain, but we're hoping as we continue this process of filling these positions, that we'll start gaining some ground," he said.

Rather than automatically refilling vacant positions, Greer said much thought is put into revamping job descriptions or creating new positions to better fit the evolving needs of agricultural business. To help prioritize which positions should be hired first, UC sought public input, receiving more than 900 individual comments last year, including from agricultural organizations.

Jim Sullins, the UCCE director for Tulare County who is planning to retire in mid-2015, said more advisors are covering multiple counties and must travel longer distances to make farm visits, so they are turning to new communications strategies in their work, such as email, social media, and other web technology. But traditional farm calls are still a mainstay service.

Katherine Pope, the new UC Cooperative Extension orchard systems advisor in Yolo County, was also featured in the AgAlert story. She talked about the importance of having enough staff to enable advisors to call on farmers personally. Pope said going out to the farm gives her a fuller picture of what she's dealing with that she can't get over the phone or with photos via email. Sometimes she may notice other issues unrelated to the original problem, or the visit may prompt other questions from the farmer.

"My job is to spread information and knowledge, and doing that in person is absolutely the best way to do that," she said.

Posted on Wednesday, January 21, 2015 at 9:28 AM

UCCE partners with UC Merced on critical issues

University of California Cooperative Extension has headquartered two new specialists on the UC Merced campus, reported Scott Hernandez-Jason of UC Merced University News. Karina Diaz-Rios, specialist for nutrition, family and consumer sciences, joined UCCE on Sept. 2. Tapan Pathak, specialist for climate adaptation in agriculture, will start Feb. 2, 2015.

"These positions come with a focus on interacting with the community, conducting applied research, and translating UC research to help the ag economy and local residents,” said Tom Peterson, UC Merced Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor. “We are pleased that UC Merced can partner with UC ANR (UC Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources) on these important issues.”

Karina Diaz-Rios
According to the news release, Diaz-Rios will be housed in UC Merced's Health Sciences Research Institute and focus on nutrition research and education and food security. She will connect with a larger team of nutrition researchers and educators throughout the UC system addressing issues related to healthy food and human health.

Tapan Pathak
Pathak, who will be housed in the Sierra Nevada Research Institute at UC Merced, will help farmers and ranchers adapt to new conditions created by variable and changing climate. He will collaborate with UC colleagues and state and federal agencies in statewide efforts to address climate variability and climate change adaptation and mitigation. He is currently an extension educator in climate variability at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln.

UC ANR continuously provides research-based solutions to the California agriculture industry, said Barbara Allen-Diaz, ANR vice president.

“California agriculture is a world-recognized marvel, and we'd like to think the university, through ANR's research and outreach, is a big reason why,” she said. “Adding UC Merced to our existing, thriving partnerships with UC Davis, UC Berkeley and UC Riverside will only strengthen UC efforts in helping California and the world to sustainably feed itself.”

Posted on Wednesday, October 15, 2014 at 10:03 AM

UC research center in Tulelake commemorates UCCE centennial

The annual field day at the UC Intermountain Research and Extension Center held last week provided an opportunity to mark the 100th anniversary of UC Cooperative Extension with leaders of the organization, reported Todd Fitchette in Western Farm Press.

The research activities at the Intermountain center, situated near the California-Oregon border in Tulelake, focus on peppermint, horseradish, small grains, wheat, potatoes, alfalfa and onions. At the field day, UCCE researchers discussed the progress of alfalfa production in the Klamath Basin, suppressing white rot disease in processing onions, maximizing profitability of wheat, pest management in peppermint and other topics.

The Intermountain Research and Extension Center is one of nine centers under the UC Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources (ANR). The 140-acre facility provides UCCE advisors and specialists the space and support needed to conduct agricultural research in a high mountain interior valley climate zone.

Participants in the Intermountain REC field day included (from left) UCCE vice provost Chris Greer, IREC director Rob Wilson, REC system associate director Lisa Fischer, ANR vice president Barbara Allen-Diaz and ANR associate vice president Bill Frost. (Photo: Todd Fitchette, courtesy of Western Farm Press),
 
See 18 more pictures of the event in the Western Farm Press gallery.
Posted on Tuesday, August 19, 2014 at 9:04 AM

It's National Pollinator Week!

Norm Gary, emeritus professor of entomology at UC Davis who recently retired as a professional bee wrangler, talks bees with Barbara Allen-Diaz, UC ANR vice president. The bee sculpture, in the Häagen-Dazs Honey Bee Haven on Bee Biology Road, UC Davis, is the work of Donna Billick. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

It's National Pollinator Week! Do you know where your pollinators are? It was good to see the University of California Agriculture and Natural...

Norm Gary, emeritus professor of entomology at UC Davis who recently retired as a professional bee wrangler, talks bees with Barbara Allen-Diaz, UC ANR vice president. The bee sculpture, in the Häagen-Dazs Honey Bee Haven on Bee Biology Road, UC Davis, is the work of Donna Billick. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Norm Gary, emeritus professor of entomology at UC Davis who recently retired as a professional bee wrangler, talks bees with Barbara Allen-Diaz, UC ANR vice president. The bee sculpture, in the Häagen-Dazs Honey Bee Haven on Bee Biology Road, UC Davis, is the work of Donna Billick. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Norm Gary, emeritus professor of entomology at UC Davis who recently retired as a professional bee wrangler, talks bees with Barbara Allen-Diaz, UC ANR vice president. The bee sculpture, in the Häagen-Dazs Honey Bee Haven on Bee Biology Road, UC Davis, is the work of Donna Billick. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

That's one pollinator! Barbara Allen-Diaz, vice president of UC ANR, holds up a finger designating one pollinator. This is Donna Billick's bee sculpture in the Haagen-Dazs Honey Bee Haven. It was funded by Wells Fargo. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
That's one pollinator! Barbara Allen-Diaz, vice president of UC ANR, holds up a finger designating one pollinator. This is Donna Billick's bee sculpture in the Haagen-Dazs Honey Bee Haven. It was funded by Wells Fargo. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

That's one pollinator! Barbara Allen-Diaz, vice president of UC ANR, holds up a finger designating one pollinator. This is Donna Billick's bee sculpture in the Haagen-Dazs Honey Bee Haven. It was funded by Wells Fargo. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Posted on Tuesday, June 17, 2014 at 10:26 PM

Bee Stunt: A First and a Last

A handful of bees, held by Barbara Allen-Diaz. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

It was Norm Gary's last bee wrangling stunt. And it was Barbara Allen-Diaz' first close-up encounter with bees. The occasion: Barbara Allen-Diaz,...

A handful of bees, held by Barbara Allen-Diaz. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
A handful of bees, held by Barbara Allen-Diaz. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

A handful of bees, held by Barbara Allen-Diaz. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Norm Gary shows Barbara Allen-Diaz the sign in front of the Harry H. Laidlaw Jr. Honey Bee Research Facility. It is the work of Davis artist Donna Billick. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Norm Gary shows Barbara Allen-Diaz the sign in front of the Harry H. Laidlaw Jr. Honey Bee Research Facility. It is the work of Davis artist Donna Billick. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Norm Gary shows Barbara Allen-Diaz the sign in front of the Harry H. Laidlaw Jr. Honey Bee Research Facility. It is the work of Davis artist Donna Billick. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Barbara Allen-Diaz and Norm Gary talk bees. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)
Barbara Allen-Diaz and Norm Gary talk bees. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Barbara Allen-Diaz and Norm Gary talk bees. (Photo by Kathy Keatley Garvey)

Posted on Thursday, May 22, 2014 at 8:38 PM
Tags: Barbara Allen-Diaz (20), bee stunt (1), bee wrangling (1), honey bees (354), Norm Gary (25), UC ANR (16)

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