Montana State University

MSU Extension announces 2012 award winners

November 20, 2012 -- MSU News Service

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MSU News Service
Tel: (406) 994-4571
BOZEMAN - Montana State University Extension recently announced its 2012 list of award-winning Extension agents, employees and supporters.

Awards were presented in October during MSU Extension's annual conference in Bozeman. A list of those awards follows:

Dave Bertelsen, MSU Extension agent in Wibaux County, received the 2012 Silver Buffalo Award in recognition of his 25-plus years of exceptional service. The award, given by Montana's Joint Council of Extension Professionals, is the organization's highest honor.

Bertelsen received the Silver Buffalo Award because he "has developed a comprehensive and well-rounded program in the areas of Agriculture, 4-H, and Community Development," said colleague Sharla Sackman, MSU Extension agent in Prairie County.

Bertelsen's work on noxious weeds, crop demonstration plots and the building of a community center at the Wibaux County Fairgrounds are just some of his contributions.

Joel Schumacher, MSU Extension family ecomonics specialist, received the Anne Wiprud Memorial Award, which recognizes an MSU Extension agent with less than 10 years experience who has developed outstanding special programs. Montana's Joint Council of Extension Professionals presented the award for Schumacher's work with the Solid Finance program.

"This new financial education program has evolved into series of web-based seminars with participants from all over Montana and several other states," said colleague Marsha Goetting, professor with MSU's Department of Agricultural Economics and Economics and MSU Extension family economics specialist.

Montana PBS received the 2012 Arrowhead Award for documenting the 4-H experience in "4-H: 6 Montana Stories" and for its support of Montana Extension programming.

Paul Lachapelle, MSU Extension community development specialist, received the Distinguished Service Award of the Montana chapter of Epsilon Sigma Phi, a national fraternity of Extension educators.

The Montana chapter of Epsilon Sigma Phi presented other awards: Visionary Leadership award to Joel Shumacher, Marsha Goetting, and Keri Hayes of MSU Extension Family Economics; Early Career award to Mandie Reed, MSU Extension agent in Wheatland County; Mid-Career Service award to Sharla Sackman, MSU Extension agent in Prairie County; Retiree Service award to Jim Knight, MSU Extension wildlife specialist.

The Montana Association of Extension 4-H agents made the following awards: 25 Years of Service award to Jill Martz, Interim Director of Extension; Achievement in Service award to Meghan Phillippi, Sanders County, and Roubie Younkin, Valley County; Meritorious Service award, Todd Kesner, 4-H agriculture and natural resources coordinator for the Montana 4-H Center for Youth Development; Distinguished Service award to Eric Miller, Garfield County, and Denise Seilstad, Fergus County.

Extension 4-H agents also won communicator awards: Jane Wolery, Teton County, received a national, regional and state recognition for a published photo; Michael Schuldt, Custer County, received regional and state recognition in the news story category for a story appearing in the Great Falls Tribune; Andrea Sarchet, Madison-Jefferson County, received state recognition for a promotional piece.

The Montana Association of County Agricultural Agents made the following awards:

Distinguished Service award to Joe Broesder, MSU Extension Central Region department head; Achievement award to Rene Kittle, MSU Extension agent, Flathead Reservation;

Eric Miller, MSU Extension Garfield County, and Denise Seilstad, MSU Extension Fergus County received the Distinguished Service Award from the Montana Extension Association of Family and Consumer Sciences.

Members of the Montana Association of Community Development Extension Professionals were recognized for the following awards:

Dave Bertelsen, MSU Extension agent in Wibaux County, received the National Association of Community Development Extension Professionals (NACDEP) Distinguished State Service Award, particularly for his community development accomplishments in Wibaux County;

MSU Local Government Center educators Jennifer Blessum, Betsy Webb, Dan Clark, Janelle Booth, Paul Lachapelle and Dustin Dallman received the NACDEP Educational Package - Team Award (Western Region), for their work on educational materials benefitting local governments and citizens across the state of Montana.

Contact: David Ashcraft at 994-2101 or