COLUMBIA, Mo. – A national search will soon be underway for a new director of University of Missouri Extension.

Stephen Ball, state extension specialist and MU associate professor of nutrition and exercise physiology, chairs the committee that will identify and evaluate candidates for the position of vice chancellor for extension and director of cooperative extension. The committee will use a search firm to assist with the process.

The new extension director will report directly to MU Chancellor R. Bowen Loftin.

Members of the search committee are:

  • Chair: Stephen Ball, state specialist and associate professor, Department of Nutrition and Exercise Physiology.
  • Carl Allison, member, State Extension Council.
  • Ronda Elfrink, member, Bollinger County Extension Council and Southeast Missouri Regional Extension Council.
  • David Hedrick, director, MU Extension Fire and Rescue Training Institute.
  • Blake Hurst, president, Board of Directors, Missouri Farm Bureau.
  • Sara Parker Pauley, director, Missouri Department of Natural Resources.
  • Marcia Shannon, associate professor of animal science and extension swine nutrition specialist.
  • State Sen. David Pearce, chair, Missouri Senate Education Committee.
  • Jim Spain, vice provost for undergraduate studies.
  • Jody Squires, MU Extension associate regional director, Urban East Region (St. Louis).
  • Marla Tobin, chair-elect, Board of Trustees, Missouri 4-H Foundation.
  • William Wiebold, professor of agronomy, College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources.
  • Steve Wyatt, associate vice chancellor and vice provost for economic development.
  • Lynda Zimmerman, president, UM Extension Association and extension regional nutrition/health specialist, Cole County, East Central Region.
  • Liaison to the MU chancellor: Brian Millner, special assistant to the MU chancellor.

MU Extension is currently under the leadership of Tom Henderson, interim vice provost and director of extension. Michael Ouart served as vice provost and director of extension from 2006 to May 2015, when he left that position to take on a new role as outreach and engagement coordinator for MU.

MU Extension serves rural and urban populations in every county and the city of St. Louis, drawing on the knowledge and experience of regional specialists as well as faculty on the four UM System campuses and Lincoln University Cooperative Extension. MU Extension delivers programs throughout the state in community development, business, agriculture and natural resources, 4-H youth development, and human environmental sciences. Extension’s continuing education programs in areas such as law enforcement, fire and rescue training, nursing and other fields draw mid-career professionals from across the U.S.

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