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A Weston County University of Wyoming Cooperative Extension Service (UW CES) educator has received the most prestigious honor in UW extension.
Bill Taylor, a community development educator based in Newcastle, received the Jim DeBree Excellence in Cooperative Extension Award during the extension service's recent annual training conference in Laramie. Extension director Glen Whipple presented the award.
The award, honoring the retired UW CES administrator, is given to those who demonstrate a high level of professional performance and leadership within their program areas and communities.
"It was a thrill and rewarding to learn that my colleagues think highly enough of my work and effort to award me this high honor," says Taylor. "As I stated at the ceremony, it is really a team award because we, meaning UW CES, work together as a team and, without the support of the rest of the team, I wouldn't be receiving this award."
Taylor began as an agriculture and natural resources educator in Weston County in 1992 and moved to the community development education team in 2003.
"He has led by example; set the standards high and lived up to them, even when that meant personal hardship to himself," wrote one nominator.
Wrote another, "He consistently exhibits solid advocacy and leadership on behalf of his staff, programs and extension services. He is the go-to resource for community development in northeast Wyoming."
Taylor is a member of the community development team within extension that responds to training requests from city and county governments to help properly complete their responsibilities. Training has been provided for several nonprofit boards and county and municipal boards, and Campbell and Crook counties and the city of Gillette have now arranged for Taylor to provide annual board training.
In addition, Taylor provides financial literacy training to clients of multiple social assistance and governmental agencies within the area. He is coordinator of the Wyoming Black Hills Leadership Institute and a certified mediator.