In this week’s issue:

Regional redesign updates

Here is a summary of recent updates in our regional redesign process, as shared at the May 18 Quarterly Conversation. This information is also available on our redesign resource page.

  • West Central: Richard Riggs will serve as regional director, effective May 25.
  • East: Regional director search is still in process.
  • Metro: Regional director search in process. The position posting closes June 18. Search chair is Dave Stone.
  • Extension roles task force:
    • We are forming a short-term task force to examine current roles, review input provided to date, and develop recommendations.
    • The purpose of the task force is to clarify and assess the specific roles and responsibilities needed for essential positions of the OSU Extension Service across our statewide organization—regional director, local leader, office manager, faculty, staff, etc.
    • We will list task force members, updates on their work, and additional opportunities for input on the resource page and in ConnEXTions.

Extension Web Update

We have some exciting news. The first phase of our project to update the OSU Extension family of websites is close to realization! We are planning to launch the site the week of May 29, and “go live” by Thursday next week. What may seem like “flipping a switch” to make the new site public is actually a sequence of behind-the-scenes steps and collaboration with OSU’s central web services team. If we run into any unforeseen delays or issues, we’ll post updates on the project website and email affected groups as needed. In the lead up to the launch, there are still aspects in progress. Learn more in this week’s post on the project website and see a preview of the new website. If you have questions at any time, please contact the project team.

Innovation in OSU Extension: Continue the momentum and get involved

At the May 18 Quarterly Conversation, a team of OSU Extension colleagues who attended the eXtension Designathon One event shared inspiration and examples of both an innovation process tool (Adobe Kickbox) and an innovative idea sparked from discussion at the event (Virtual Forest Ranger).

They also issued calls to action for anyone who would like to share ideas for helping address hurdles to innovation in our organization:

Communication and connection opportunities

Is there anything about which you are interested, curious, or concerned? Here are some ways to share and ask:

  • Online form to submit questions (Think of this like a virtual comment box.)
  • OSU Extension Slack workspace for informal communication and collaboration
  • Note: We recently added a new channel to our workspace called “Ask us.” This is a place to ask questions of your O&E exec team. We will respond, and others can chime in, too.
  • Read ConnEXTions weekly, and contribute!
  • O&E blog with First Monday videos (Engage via the comment section!)
  • Outreach & Engagement Quarterly Conversations (Next: August 17, 2018)

Diversity Highlights

Please contact with any questions or comments or if you have suggestions for events or news stories to include in Diversity Highlights.

Events & Resources

Creating Anti-Racist Communities: The College of Engineering and the President’s Commission on the Status of Women present: “Creating Anti-Racist Communities.” In today’s society what does it take to create a just community? How can we break through the deeply ingrained layers of structural racism to create an equal America? On May 30 at 6 p.m. in the LaSells Stewart Center, Tricia Rose, acclaimed scholar and award-winning author and the Chancellor’s Professor of Africana Studies, and director of the Center for the Study of Race and Ethnicity in America at Brown University, attempts to tackle this in our political landscape. For information or accommodations contact, University Events 541-737-4717 or

Our Story. Our Voice. Our Culture: Oregonians from Bhutanese, Micronesian, and African communities will introduce their cultures and share stories in an evening of fun and learning. Women will tell birth stories, offering a glimpse of experiences that carry vital lessons to be learned by health professionals and the broader Portland community. For more information visit the event page.

Tualatin: Online Community Engagement – Strategies for Success: Join Engaging Local Government Leaders members from Bang the Table for this interactive roundtable utilizing case studies to help you successfully integrate online tools into your community engagement strategy so you can create an accessible and inclusive space. For more information, visit the even page.

The Space Between Us: Immigrants, Refugees, and Oregon: In this conversation, Manuel Padilla, who has worked with refugees in Haiti, Chad, and Washington D.C., asks participants to consider questions of uprootedness, hospitality, identity, perception, and integration and how we might build more informed, responsive, resilient, and vibrant communities. The event will take place June 8, from 6:00 pm to 7:30 pm at the Coos History Museum & Maritime Collections in Coos Bay. For more information check out the event page.

In the News

Parents Are Divided Over a Book in a Popular Student Reading Program in Oregon
The book “George,” a debut novel for readers between the ages of 8 and 12, has set off a storm within a popular student reading competition in Oregon. Written by Alex Gino, the book is the story of George, a 10-year-old transgender girl struggling for acceptance among her friends and family while standing up to school bullies. George, who has secretly renamed herself Melissa, longs to play Charlotte in the fourth-grade production of “Charlotte’s Web.”

Student group plans veteran suicide awareness march (Gazette-Times)
The Student Veterans Association of Oregon State University and local community members are planning a 22-kilometer march Saturday to raise awareness of veteran suicide rates.

As Oregon Grows, So Does Its Demand For Ethnic Grocery Stores 
Grocery stores can provide some hints into who lives — and doesn’t live — in a neighborhood. As Oregon gets more diverse, the demand for ethnic grocery stores grows.

Racial or ethnic discrimination impacts Latinas’ satisfaction with contraceptive services, study finds 
Young Latina women who have experienced racial or ethnic discrimination are less satisfied overall with their contraceptive care, which could affect their access to more effective contraceptives, a new study from Oregon State University has found. (see also Psych Central)

OSU resource center helps students in need
Johannah Hamilton, 26, grew up in Louisville, Kentucky. She picked up a degree from the University of Kentucky in agricultural economics with minors in business and Spanish and added a master’s in agricultural economics from Auburn in Alabama. Then she was recruited to enter a four-year doctoral program in public policy at Oregon State University.

What are you reading?

Please share an interesting book, blog, or article you’ve read lately. What’s one insight you gleaned?

Extension in the news

Is homegrown food safer? Only if gardeners take precautions
The Washington Post (via AP)
“The odds are better there won’t be any contamination from the things we grow ourselves, but no fresh foods are safe,” said Jeanne Brandt, a family and community health specialist with Oregon State University Extension. “Gardening and cooking are a food safety continuum. Safety must be considered with every step in the process, from pre-planting to placing meals on the table.”

Analyze Agriculture
Baker City Herald
The animals are medium-framed and usually have a good disposition, Leticia Henderson, Oregon State University Extension livestock and natural resources agent told her first group of students Tuesday morning as the second day of the two-day event got under way.

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