Location: Van Buren, Ark.
Staff Chair and County Extension Agent: Herb Ginn
History: “The Extension Service reaches back to agriculture clubs and societies formed soon after the American Revolution, but wasn’t federally formalized until 1914. Arkansas records show the University of Arkansas Extension formally began in 1905 and now serves all 75 counties,” County Extension Agent and Staff Chair Herb Ginn, who has beein with Extension since 2005, explained.
Services: “The Extension Service covers four major areas: agriculture, family and consumer science, 4-H and community economic development. There are five of us at the Crawford County Extension office, with each staff member specializing in one area although we all help each other out whenever needed. Agriculture in this county is diverse. There are row crops, such as corn, soybeans and wheat, in addition to commercial fruit and vegetable producers. We also service livestock and forage producers, as well as rural and urban homeowners who approach us with garden, lawn and tree issues. Extension offers a wide variety of services to the public, including soil testing, on-farm demonstrations, forage testing, Arkansas’s Go Green program for cattle producers and many others. Information on all available services is available on Extension’s website at www.uaex.edu.”
Philosophy and future: “The purpose of what we do is to respectfully work with all people in evaluating needs, and providing and using research-based information. We are not out to sell anything but to present scientifically verified information for the diverse needs of our county’s people.
“I believe the Extension Service is valuable and will continue to grow in importance. Succeeding and prospering in agriculture is becoming increasingly more difficult with rising input prices being a significant factor. Presenting research-based information on old and new methods for increasing profitability is critical for the survival of our producers.”