MANCHESTER, Iowa — Ranked in the top 10 for total agricultural market value in Iowa, Delaware County supports a wide range of crop production, livestock and natural resources.
Helping to answer questions and provide resources is Jade Hargrafen, one of two recipients of this year’s County Professional Excellence in Ag and Natural Resources Programming Awards.
Hargrafen became director of Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Delaware County in May of 2016, and has worked to support a variety of programs, including Annie’s Project, farmland leasing programs, farm bill education, farm safety day, women in ag and much more.
“It is always a pleasure to partner with Jade when bringing agricultural programming to Delaware County,” said Donna Boss, Delaware County Economic Development director. “Agriculture is our number one industry, so bringing key programs to our producers is extremely important.”
Hargrafen grew up on a local family farm and participated in 4-H. She and her fiancé continue to farm in Delaware County with their families raising cattle, hogs and crops.
She gained experience as a 4-H summer assistant, 4-H office assistant, and county youth coordinator before becoming county program director. Local programming is her primary focus.
“Her personal drive and the fact that she is always positive about exploring new opportunities is what makes her an excellent director,” said Roger Helmrichs, Delaware County Extension Council Chairman.
Hargrafen continues to find new ways to be innovative and on the cutting edge of programming, for youth and adults, and for men and women. She is active in planning and hosting the Women in Ag Leadership Conference, as well as the Managing for Today and Tomorrow farm transition planning course.
She was officially presented with the award and plaque during a video announcement, by Jay Harmon, associate dean in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and director for agriculture and natural resources with Iowa State, and Jamie Benning, assistant director for agriculture and natural resources with ISU Extension and Outreach. Learn more about what she does in Delaware County by watching a recording of the video. The same award was bestowed upon Whitney Weisinger, program coordinator for ISU Extension and Outreach in Lee County.
“The awards committee received an impressive set of nominations this year,” said Benning. “Jade Hargrafen and Whitney Weisinger are each deserving of this award due to their outstanding commitment to providing research-based Agriculture and Natural Resources programs for stakeholders in their counties.”
— Iowa State University Extension and Outreach
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