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UW Extension Educator’s Work Prompts Diversity Enhancement Award

November 24, 2014
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UW Extension Educator Tina Russell was praised for her professionalism, cultural understanding, demeanor and persistence. (UW Extension)

Innovative programs and quick response to the needs of her clientele earned a University of Wyoming Extension educator the organization’s Diversity Enhancement Award.

Tina Russell, who serves the Wind River Indian Reservation and Big Horn, Fremont, Hot Springs, Park and Washakie counties, was recognized during extension’s recent annual training in Laramie. Russell, also a 4-H educator, is based in Ethete. She specializes in agriculture and natural resources, forestry, energy efficiency and conservation and recycling education.

Her demeanor and persistence drew praise.

“She responds to the needs of her audience and collaborates well with community organizers and colleagues with quiet persistence, friendly professionalism and cultural understanding,” wrote one nominator.

She has many accomplishments. Russell assembled a committee of members of the Northern Arapaho and Eastern Shoshone tribes to generate the first Wind River Reservation Leadership Program.

Additionally, she initiated the Cultural Synergy Workshop that served as a launching point for better understanding of tribal citizens and their cultures, and she facilitated methods in which area educators can better understand the American Indian way of life.

Russell collaborates with Cent$ible Nutrition Program educators in presenting workshops and initiated planning for a tribal farmers market. She offers in-school programs for youth, and works with 4-H youths of the Northern Arapaho and Eastern Shoshone tribes encompassing an array of projects and transcending cultures.

In addition, Russell, who joined extension in 2008, offers programs to ranch women to supplement practical skills with modern methods and technology to raise business skills.

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