Albany County extension offers Master Gardener program

Kellie Chichester

Master Gardener training in Albany County starts in January.

Trainees will receive training in horticulture from University of Wyoming Extension specialists and are encouraged to share their new skills and knowledge through volunteerism.

“This is a great opportunity to meet others who enjoy horticulture and volunteering,” said Kellie Chichester, UW Extension educator in Albany County. “These classes are for anyone who enjoys volunteering, working with community groups or individually, and especially for folks who enjoy the outdoors and plants.”

An informational meeting is 6-9 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 28, at the Albany County extension office at the Albany County Fairgrounds south of Laramie.

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Worland study group helps prepare applicants for commercial driver license tests

Sandra Frost

A free study group in Worland will help steer applicants toward their Wyoming commercial driver license (CDL).

UW Extension and Northwest College are offering the CDL study group 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Dec. 3-7, Monday-Friday, in the Worland Community Center Complex.

“The goal is to help prepare participants for the written and vehicle inspectiontests,” said Sandra Frost, UW Extension educator in Powell. “The class does not include driving practice.” Attendees are provided study materials and regional resources including instructional materials from the Wyoming Department of Transportation. Additionally, local farmers and ranchers will discuss the practical aspects of operating commercial vehicles.

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UW professor receives national excellence in teaching award

Karen Williams

A family and consumer sciences professor at the University of Wyoming has been recognized for excellence in teaching and service to students.

Karen Williams in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources is one of six regional recipients of the Excellence in College and University Teaching in the Food and Agricultural Sciences Award from the USDA Association of Public and Land-grant Universities.

Williams received the award during the national APLU meeting Sunday, Nov. 11, in Denver from Catherine Woteki, chief scientist and under secretary for USDA’s Research, Education, and Economics.

“This award is a great honor, but it is really a recognition of our college, its support for teaching and the scholarship of teaching and learning, and of our students,” said Williams. “I learn more from the children I work with and the college students I’m privileged to teach than they learn from me. I have the best job in the world.”

Frank Galey, dean of the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources, and Donna Brown, associate dean and director of the Office of Academic and Student Programs in the college, accompanied Williams. Brown, one of the nominators, was head of family and consumer sciences when Williams was recommended.

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UW Extension bulletin outlines personal protective equipment for farm, ranch safety

Solutions for Living

A new UW Extension publication offers suggestions to ranchers and farmers purchasing and using personal protective equipment.

Every day, 243 agricultural workers in America suffer serious lost-work time injuries, and 5 percent of these injuries result in permanent impairment, according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration.

“In 2010, the injury rate for agricultural workers was 20 percent higher than the rate for all workers,” said Randy Weigel, UW Extension human development specialist. “Many farm and ranch injuries could be prevented or their impacts reduced if they wore proper personal protective equipment (PPE).”

The “Solutions for Living: Personal Protective Equipment for Agriculture” bulletin, B-1233, outlines considerations for purchasing and using PPE. The bulletin can be accessed free at

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UW Extension honors educators, specialist for exemplary performance

Karla Case

A Natrona County University of Wyoming Extension educator has received extension’s most prestigious award, and two others received newer employee and creative excellence honors.

Karla Case, a nutrition and food safety educator, was presented the Jim DeBree Excellence in Cooperative Extension Award in Laramie Wednesday, Nov. 7, during extension’s annual training conference.

The award, honoring the retired extension administrator, is given to those who demonstrate a high level of professional performance and leadership within their program areas and communities.

Nominations noted Case’s ability to work well with others, collaboration in creative efforts and providing innovative and inspiring contributions. Case is also the Cent$ible Nutrition Program coordinator for the county. A registered dietician, Case joined UW Extension in 2006.

Jennifer Jacobsen

Vision, finesse and confidence helped Jennifer Jacobsen receive the organization’s Newer Employee Recognition Award. Jacobsen, a nutrition and food safety educator based in Jackson, serves Lincoln, Sublette, Sweetwater, Teton and Uinta counties.

“She is an example of an outstanding educator and exemplifies enthusiasm, professionalism, creativity and a strong work ethic,” wrote one nominator.

“She continuously looks for new ways to serve and educate in the western area, and provides successful programming in andoutside of Teton County,” said another.

Jacobsen began her position in 2009.

Creating and enhancing client websites and delivering creative and impressive projects has earned website designer and developer Ann Tanaka the Creative Excellence Recognition Award.

Ann Tanaka

Tanaka, in the Office of Communications and Technology in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources in Laramie, was recognized for her commitment to improving extension’s Web presence.

“In a very short time, Ann has transformed extension’s Web presence from static pages to an interactive experience,” wrote a nominator.

Wrote another, “Ann approaches each project with a curiosity to learn something new, persistence to make the current better and determination to deliver a product that reflects the desires of her clientele. Her ideas and creativity in building and improving websites always exceed my expectations.”

Tanaka joined UW Extension in 2011.