That’s impact!

A large group sits and stands in a room.

We had good visits in Washington, D.C., last week with our commodity group and agency partners (the Washington State Department of Agriculture and the Washington State Conservation Commission). Thanks to Derek Sandison, Chris Voigt, Kristina Kelley, Mary Palmer Sullivan, Michelle Hennings, Marcie Green, Mark Powers, Kirk Robinson, and Gil Crosby for joining us! We were told repeatedly by House and Senate members and their staff how important it is to hear stories that demonstrate the impact of our work within CAHNRS and with our industry and USDA Agricultural Research Service (ARS) partners. Our commodity group and agency partners had powerful illustrations of how research and Extension efforts, in partnership with ARS and the industry, resulted in evident benefit to producers.

We know the work of CAHNRS faculty and staff has impact. Not everyone who needs to know does. We could benefit from conversations, planning, and examples of what others are doing. Vicki McCracken is working with colleagues at the University of California to learn how they are developing impact statements. Be on the lookout for more information on how CAHNRS program personnel can participate in trainings so that we can better share the impacts of CAHNRS research, teaching, and Extension in ways that are easy to understand and reflect solutions to problems that are important to the general public. The Extension team will continue the conversation during its annual meeting in October, but impact stories are about the value of all three of our mission areas. Using our soon-to-be-launched website, there is no better time than now to share our message.

I am in Pullman all week catching up on standing meetings with many of the unit directors. The town seems to be full of moving vans in the apartment complexes. I suspect we are only a couple weeks away from routing many appointment letters for graduate student, postdoctoral, and faculty employees. I am excited to meet our new colleagues.

Field days continue, though summer is going fast. I hear the Master Gardener Program 50th anniversary event at the Mount Vernon Northwestern Washington Research and Extension Center last week produced a full house. Congratulations to all involved in making it a success!