State Coordinators' Biographies
Recently Nick has done applied cover crop research and developed the OSU Organic Fertilizer and Cover Crop Calculator. He also teaches agricultural composting workshops and is evaluating simple methods for protecting water quality at agricultural composting sites. Nick also organizes beginning farmer training programs in Oregon.
With its unique climate and geography, Arizona hosts a wide variety of agricultural opportunities. While many question whether agriculture can be sustainable in a desert, low rainfall climate, various cultures have proved over thousands of years that life can indeed be sustainable in the Southwest. To be successful, however, all people must learn how to carefully live and work with, instead of against, the climate.
In many ways, the Southwest is ideal for the activities of life, including the production of food and fiber. Still, significant hurdles challenge the development of a long-term, sustainable agriculture. Rick and the Arizona Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education program, working with interested participants throughout the state, strive to understand and help apply the principles of sustainable agriculture in the desert.
As an extension research associate at Utah State University, Bob focuses on soil and water conservation, land use and hydrology. His research plots, located throughout Utah, are related to diversified farming systems, including direct seeding technology, use of animal manures and compost and windbreak establishment. His wide range of research and extension activities also encompasses alternative crops, agroforestry, riparian habitat restoration and range/fire rehabilitation.
Born in Indianapolis ("I was a city boy with an ag background that was 100% consumer"), Bob split his time growing up between Indiana and Southern California. He attended Ricks College (now Brigham Young University-Idaho), earning an associate degree in biological science. He received a bachelor's in soil science and agronomy and a master's in soil conservation and hydrology at Utah State University.
Before returning to USU in 1984, he was plant manager and a salesman for U.S. Steel's Ag Chemical Division in Paul, Idaho, and a soil conservationist with what was then the USDA Soil Conservation Service in Logan, Tremonton and Fillmore, Utah.
He and his wife Maurine have six children, three grandchildren, two dogs and two cats. Bob enjoys gardening (fruit and vegetables), walking, reading and camping.
At Colorado State Steven has program responsibilities for commercial greenhouse production. By partnering with county faculty with similar responsibilities, he maintains a series of educational programs targeting commercial greenhouse growers based on an established needs assessment plan. Those efforts have developed in more recent years into a series of programs co-sponsored by cooperative extension and commodity groups. These collaborative programs are formulated with industry input and utilize recognized speakers, in- and out-of-state, to provide the best educational opportunities in the Rocky Mountain west for green industry professionals. He received his B.S. in Agricultural Production from Montana State University; a M.S. in Horticulture from University of Nebraska-Lincoln, and a Ph.D. in Horticulture from Texas A & M University.
From 1992 to 2004 Jackson was Assistant Campus Director/Agriculture and Natural Resources Extension Agent, with responsibility for plans of work, program planning, implementation and evaluation. He coordinated extension activities on Pohnpei from 1990 to 1992, coordinated 4-H youth activities on Pohnpei from 1987 to 1990 and was a research assistant from 1985 to 1987.
Jackson was Assistant State Agriculturist with the Pohnpei State Government from 1982 to 1985 and assists chief from 1980 to 1982. He served from 1972 to 1980 as extension aide for the Division of Agriculture's Department of Resources and Surveillance, conducting training for agricultural extension agents and farmers.
He is a member and former chair of the Pohnpei Soil & Water Conservation District Board, chair of the Pohnpei Invasive Species Task Force and was named chair in 2003 of the Urban and Community Forestry Advisory Council.
Among his major accomplishments are establishing procedures for storage and disposal of hazardous materials; assisting with the first insect pest survey for Micronesia; helping coordinate sustainable kava cultivation in lowland agroforestry systems; conducting pesticide application training for employees and farmers; and demonstrating animal waste management systems with NRCS.
Stephanie was first exposed to agricultural field work when she accepted a co-op job as a cotton pest field scout while working on her B.S. degree. She completed her degree in biology, specializing in microbiology, from New Mexico State University in 1984. She accepted the position of Quality Control Supervisor with Pet Inc. at its Old El Paso processing facility in Anthony, Texas in 1985. After 10 years of experience and positions of increasing responsibility in the food processing industry, Stephanie joined NMSU?s Chile Pepper Breeding program, where she studied the genetics of resistance to phytophthora root rot and foliar blight in Capsicum annuum. After earning an M.S. in Horticulture, she accepted the position of Research Specialist in the Agronomy and Horticultural Department at NMSU, working on post-harvest vegetable physiology and breeding sweet onions and paprika. Stephanie completed her Ph.D. in Agronomy in 2007, studying the impact of cultivar attributes on mechanical harvest efficiency in paprika.
Stephanie has two children and has resided in Las Cruces, New Mexico since 1973.
Cinda helps to organize and conduct professional development workshops, tours and conferences related to sustainable agriculture, including composting, direct marketing, organic production, soil quality, and agricultural entrepreneurship. She has helped develop satellite broadcasts, videos and curriculum related to sustainable agriculture education and has been a reviewer for all three types of SARE grants.
Cinda was a co-founder of Rural Roots, a nonprofit small acreage farming group in Northern Idaho and eastern Washington, serving as technical advisor since 1999. She has helped form a longstanding collaboration between Rural Roots and University of Idaho Extension, including organizing and offering multiple workshops, farm tours and small farm conferences and helping to garner support for several grant funded projects including a USDA IFAFS Direct Marketing for Small Farms research grant, a Higher Education Challenge Grant to develop a certificate program for Sustainable Small Acreage Farming and Ranching and a Western SARE PDP grant for outreach and training on the Cultivating Success curriculum.
In addition to her work with SARE and Rural Roots, she is currently co-leader of the UI CALS Small Acreage Team and is also the state co-coordinator for the USDA Small Farm Program. She teaches a course for UI students and community members on "Sustainable Small Acreage Farming and Ranching" and is a co-instructor for WSU/UI summer field course on "Field Analysis of Sustainable Food Systems."
Cinda received both her B.S. and M.S. degrees from U of Idaho in Plant Science/Horticulture. Her previous work experience includes four years as a Horticulture and 4-H Extension Educator, four years in a Forest Service Soil Health laboratory and two years as a Horticulturist at a plant nursery. Cinda lives with her husband and two boys in Troy, Idaho.
Tara earned her B.A. in Biology from Whitman College in 1996 and M.S. in Environmental Horticulture and Urban Forestry from University of Washington in 2003. She served as a Peace Corps volunteer in the Solomon Islands from 1997 to 1999, where she taught science and mathematics in secondary school.