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Reflections and Resolutions

You see it often this time of year. The year in review, the top ten stories for the past year, things to work on in the year ahead. It’s that time of year when we take pause to reflect on what we accomplished or focused on over the last twelve months, and we also look ahead to a new year filled with fresh goals and opportunities.

2017 has been a productive one for UF/IFAS Extension. Our administrative offices have moved out and then back into their renovated office space in McCarty Hall in Gainesville. The new space encourages greater collaboration between all program leaders, district directors, senior leadership and Extension business operations. While we have moved in, we are still unpacking a few boxes and planning out the interior decorations for the main reception area. We are looking forward to getting this completed and then showcasing our new area in 2018.

2017 has been a productive one for UF/IFAS Extension.

Much of the year was spent reviewing and improving our relationships with Florida Farm Bureau. Listening sessions were held across the state and produced some valuable insights into how both organizations may improve our ongoing working partnership. As we reflect on this important relationship we know that its continued growth and development is a must for our 2018 resolutions.

Destruction of greenhouses caused by Hurricane Irma in Manatee County

Hurricane Irma hit the state hard in September and its aftermath will continue to impact our work throughout 2018. UF/IFAS Extension faculty and staff responded with heroic levels of service and continue to work in temporary offices, assisting ag producers devastated by the storm and leading their communities forward with recovery efforts.

Looking to 2018, our organization needs to continue to be digitally savvy. So many of those we serve now get their information online and we need to be there as well. Blogging about our programs and services and providing information via social media and delivering programs online is a high priority for all of us in 2018.

Another resolution for UF/IFAS Extension is to continue working on our fiscal goals, including establishing 182 and 171 accounts in every county and creating at least one endowment in every county to support local Extension positions, programming or initiatives. This Road to 67 effort is part of UF’s Capital Campaign and stands to have a significant impact on our future success.

Lastly, one resolution that we renew every year is our commitment to service. It’s not only our mission but in the Extension DNA. As we resolve to provide the best service that we possibly can, let’s also resolve to take care of ourselves and each other so that we are healthy and able to be there where and when we are needed.

All the best for a wonderful holiday and for a productive and happy 2018!

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