Four members of UW-Extension’s Community, Natural Resource and Economic Development (CNRED) program were recently recognized by their peers for their exceptional educational and organizational contributions.
Program director Karl Martin presented the awards at the CNRED in-service conference held recently in northern Wisconsin.
John Haack, natural resources educator based in Spooner, Wisconsin received the Outstanding Specialist Award 2016 Program Innovation Award. Haack has developed over a dozen innovative outreach tools, including the Wisconsin Lakes Trivia game with 102 question-and-answer cards covering lake topics; My Lakeshore Field Journal, a rustic 27-page publication that engages youth in exploring lakeshore natural life; and a variety of YouTube videos and public service announcements designed to address issues identified by shoreland owners.
Matt Kures, community resource development specialist with the Center for Community & Economic Development was recognized with the Outstanding Specialist Award. Kures was honored for his responsiveness to Extension educators and their clientele, and in particular for the strong research that underpins his work, along with his “outstanding teaching.” Kures pioneered the use of geospatial (GIS) tools to bring data to life. By using maps and other sophisticated graphic modeling techniques, Kures has helped learners quickly understand important, yet complicated, concepts.
The 2016 Outstanding Educator Award was presented to Steve Grabow of UW-Extension Jefferson County. Grabow was honored for his strong ability to build working relationships and teams, and to deliver research-based programs that are driven by stakeholders, focused on solving problems and that achieve significant outcomes. For many years, Grabow has contributed leadership and scholarship to UW-Extension programs, co-authoring Comprehensive Planning and Citizen Participation, writing the Principles and Practice of Community Placemaking, and serving in many and varied leadership roles, including as team leader of the Strategic Planning Team and the Community Vitality and Placemaking Team. Grabow’s leadership has led to positive impacts not only for UW-Extension, but for the state as a whole.
Mary Ellen Rodriguez of the CNRED central program office received the 2016 Program Excellence Award. Rodriguez is known for her communications skills that bridge both internal and external audiences and for consistently going above expectations in her efforts for her colleagues. She is credited for effectively facilitating smooth transitions for new leadership and key staff while taking on additional responsibilities.
Photo: Matt Kures accepts the Outstanding Specialist Award from program director Karl Martin at the recent CNRED in-service.