2019 SNAP-Ed Program Development Team Meeting

2019-2020 Program Development Team Members.  Not all team members were present for the photo.


Land-Grant University System SNAP-Ed Program Development Team  Annual Work Meeting Report: Action Items and Accomplishments April 16-18, 2019, Alexandria, VA

The Land-Grant University SNAP-Ed Program Development Team (PDT) is action-oriented, proactive, and focused on long-term projects. This 17-person team represents all Extension regions and is comprised of family and consumer science program leaders and other university administrators, SNAP-Ed program coordinators, an office manager from the Land-Grant University (LGU) System, and a federal partner from the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), U.S. Department of Agriculture.  In 2019, an EFNEP Coordinator was added to the team to help facilitate coordination among SNAP-Ed, EFNEP, and other Land-Grant University extension low-income nutrition education programs.  A second Family and Consumer Sciences Administrator was added to the Executive Committee to share volunteer leadership responsibilities.  The team conducts monthly conference calls, subcommittee work, and an annual face-to-face meeting to improve the consistency and effectiveness of Extension SNAP-Ed programming to address national health and nutrition-related problems facing low-income populations in the context of Extension’s broader low-income nutrition education portfolio.

At its annual meeting in April, the PDT reviewed progress, refined and updated its strategic plan implementation, and developed key action steps for the upcoming year.  Specific deliverables were identified, building upon past efforts.  These included:

  • Providing training to support SNAP-Ed leaders in educating legislators and stakeholders;
  • Developing and disseminating onboarding resources to help new SNAP-Ed leaders have a successful start and other resources to strengthen programming across the LGUs;
  • Improving coordination, complementary efforts, and synergy across the LGUs and with additional partners to maximize efficiency and avoid duplication;
  • Preparing a SNAP-Ed LGU National Report on comprehensive approaches and impacts; and
  • Fostering communication among LGUs and with other implementing agencies and stakeholders.

The PDT’s ongoing goals are to support programming, professional development, and partner engagement in ways that will best serve the SNAP-Ed population.  The updated strategic plan is being finalized and will be shared shortly with Extension Directors/Administrators, FCS Leaders, and SNAP-Ed Directors/Coordinators.

Highlights of the last year include:

  • Legislative Education. A primary focus for the year was to ensure that Extension leadership and others had current, relevant, and accurate information.  The PDT gathered data, developed content for stakeholders, created a SNAP-Ed brochure, and responded to requests from ECOP.
  • Strengthening Program and Developing Colleagues. A second priority was the development of program staff.  Resources were created for a SNAP-Ed 101 primer that is under development.  PDT members also provided training, mentored new coordinators, and addressed questions from colleagues.  They held a web-retreat for LGU-Extension SNAP-Ed Directors to discuss hot topics and share best practices. 
  • Building and Sustaining Critical Partnerships. The PDT manned a display at the National SNAP Directors’ Annual Meeting.  Several PDT members also served as liaisons with Association of SNAP Nutrition Education Administrators (ASNNA) committees to ensure that PDT efforts aligned with priorities of other implementing agencies.  Resources were developed for strengthening interactions with State agencies.  PDT members met with USDA FNS contacts to consider how to support agency priorities. 
  • Enhancing Communication and Shared Understanding. PDT members facilitated increased calls and more consistent communication within and across extension regions. PDT developed resources are available at https://community-nutrition-education.extension.org, the community nutrition page on the eXtension website.  Program impact reports from 28 states and the District of Columbia for the past year have also been posted. This “community,” currently at 233 members, continues to grow.


Members of the LGU SNAP-Ed Program Development Team for 2019-2020 (as of August 2019)

North Central Region

  • Christine Hradek, SNAP-Ed and EFNEP Coordinator, Iowa State University
  • Jennifer McCaffrey, Assistant Dean, Family and Consumer Sciences, University of Illinois (new)
  • Lisa Ross, Program Manager, EFNEP and SNAP-Ed, Kansas State University (new)


Northeast Region

  • Elise Gurgevich, SNAP-Ed and EFNEP Coordinator, Penn State University
  • Joan Paddock, EFNEP Coordinator, Cornell University (new)


Southern Region

  • Sylvia Byrd, Project Director, Office of Nutrition Education, Mississippi State University (new)
  • Candance (Candy) Gabel, State Coordinator, Community Nutrition Education Program, Oklahoma State University
  • Lorelei Jones, EFNEP Coordinator, North Carolina State University (new)
  • Andrea Morris, Health and Nutrition Specialist/Program Manager EFNEP and SNAP-Ed, Alabama A&M University; 1890 representative
  • Renda Nelson, Better Living for Texans State Program Director, Texas A&M University


Western Region

  • Heidi LeBlanc, SNAP-Ed Director, Utah State University (new)
  • Katie Panarella, Director (FCS, EFNEP and UC MAster Food Preserver Program),  University of California (new)
  • Donna Sauter, ICAN Director (SNAP-Ed & EFNEP), New Mexico State University


Executive Committee

  • Angie Abbott, Assistant Dean and Associate Director, Health and Human Sciences Extension, Purdue University (new)
  • Andrea Morris, Health and Nutrition Specialist/Program Manager EFNEP and SNAP-Ed, Alabama A&M University; 1890 representative (new)
  • Jill Thorngren, Dean, College of Education and Human Sciences, South Dakota State University
    Sandra Jensen, Office Manager SNAP-Ed through the LGU System, South Dakota State University
  • Helen Chipman, National Program Leader Food & Nutrition Education, NIFA/USDA


Special Projects (new)

  • Lauren Sweeney, SNAP-Ed Program Coordinator, Family, Youth and Community Services, University of Florida
  • Sally Bowman, Program Leader SNAP-Ed & EFNEP, Oregon State University (consultant)


Rotating Off – April 2019

  • Pat Bebo, Assistant Director, Family & Consumer Sciences Extension, The Ohio State University
  • Sally Bowman, Program Leader SNAP-Ed & EFNEP, Oregon State University
  • Patsy Ezell, Assistant Director FCS, University of Maryland
  • Megan Ness Ditterick, EFNEP/FNP Coordinator, North Dakota State University
  • Karla Shelnutt, Associate Professor and Extension Nutrition Specialist, University of Florida
  • Laura Stephenson, Assistant Dean, Family and Consumer Sciences, University of Tennessee Extension
  • Lisa Sullivan-Werner, FNP and EFNEP Leader, University of Massachusetts