Skip to main content

UF/IFAS’ Place chosen for elite leadership institute.

Nick Place, University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences dean and director for Extension

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Nick Place, University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences dean and director for Extension, was accepted for the Food Systems Leadership Institute, an executive leadership development program for high-level academia, industry, and government officials.

“Through participation in this program, my goal is to learn and apply strategies that will help me expand my leadership capabilities, which will hopefully benefit UF/IFAS Extension,” said Place, who returned to UF in 2012 following a five-year stint at the University of Maryland. “I am also aiming to identify and apply ways that will help us grow and expand our UF/IFAS Extension program around the campus and the state.”

Place, who has begun his studies with the institute, is responsible for meeting the mission and goals of the University of Florida Extension program. He oversees faculty and researchers located in the Extension offices in each of Florida’s 67 counties, 13 research and education centers, 15 academic departments and the School of Forest Resources and Conservation.

Institute officials select participants who are in senior agricultural leadership positions at colleges and universities, along with industry and government professionals. FSLI is dedicated to advancing and strengthening food systems by preparing a set of new leaders with the skills and knowledge necessary to invent and reinvent the food systems of the future.

It is a program of the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities, with the initial funding provided by the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. North Carolina State University is the host site. The Ohio State University and California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo are residential sites responsible for implementation of the program.

The institute is designed to enhance personal and professional development by emphasizing leadership competencies, skills for organizational change, and a broad, interdisciplinary perspective of food systems. FSLI prepares scholars for upper-level leadership roles in food system programs, and to assume broader leadership responsibilities within their organizations. Scholars work with expert instructors, leadership development coaches, and an upper level mentor to help increase their leadership abilities.

Additional information is available at

By Kimberly Moore Wilmoth, 352-294-3302,

Sources:      Nick Place, 352-392-1761,