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Agriculture Entrepreneurship Specialist Receives UW Extension’s Highest Honor

November 17, 2014
head portrait of man
Cole Ehmke

An educator involved in University of Wyoming Extension programs across Wyoming has received the organization’s highest honor.

Cole Ehmke, an agriculture entrepreneurship and personal financial management specialist, received the Jim DeBree Excellence in Education Award during extension’s recent annual conference. Ehmke is in the Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources.

The award, named in honor of the retired extension administrator, is given to those who demonstrate a high level of professionalism, performance and leadership within their program areas and communities.

Ehmke is involved with several extension teams, including community development and financial literacy, and provides support to the Agriculture and Horticulture State Initiative Team.

His many programming efforts include:

-- A nine-week series for new and beginning farmers in the Big Horn Basin.

-- Publishing a series of 11 estate planning bulletins.

-- Coordinating the Annie’s Project program in Wyoming (a six-part class for women in agriculture that helps increase participants’ abilities to work in and manage agricultural operations).

-- Organizing the Living and Working on the Land conferences.

-- Co-editing the quarterly newsletter Health and Wealth.

-- Creating a manual for new managers of CSAs (community supported agriculture ventures).

Additionally, he collaborates on extension’s Barnyards and Backyards small-acreage issue team; helps plan the annual Consumer Issues Conference; leads the Wyoming JumpStart Coalition for Personal Financial Literacy; coordinates local foods classes; and gives presentations across the state on financial management, marketing, succession planning, estate planning and money management.

Ehmke joined extension in 2005. He was a Fulbright Scholar to the University of Sydney, Australia, where he received his master’s degree, and he received his bachelor’s degree from Bethany College in Lindsborg, Kan. He was at Purdue University before coming to UW.

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