Background and principles

University of Missouri Extension’s partnerships across the state are very important.  Our clients; county, regional and state extension councils; 4-H and EXCEL volunteers; agriculture supporters; business development program partners; and others who realize the value of the land-grant university are our greatest asset. Our partners can tell the story of MU Extension’s impact in a way that faculty, staff and administrators cannot. Yet, all faculty and staff have a role to play in sharing the story and in equipping the volunteer network with the information and context necessary to tell the story.

Telling the story of extension’s impact and value must take place throughout the year, in an ongoing manner.  Reporting back to our funders and the public at large is part of our responsibility to be accountable for the tax dollars and other resources invested in MU Extension. Additionally, term limits have underscored the need to inform a new group of legislators on an ongoing basis.

What is a stakeholder?

A stakeholder is someone who is involved with an organization and therefore has responsibilities toward it and an interest in its success. Extension stakeholders are decision makers who have ownership for supporting extension programs and who – along with their constituents – benefit from those programs. They have the capacity to generate goodwill and obtain resources to support the University of Missouri Extension mission.

Stakeholders include, but are not limited to, state and federal legislators; county commissioners and other county officeholders; city officeholders; local, state and national program partners; and community leaders.

Basic principles

University of Missouri Extension’s stakeholder relations have this foundation:

  • The emphasis is on building relationships and partnerships for the public good.
  • Efforts need to be comprehensive, ongoing and focused on education.
  • Developing and nurturing relationships with decision makers is everyone's job, although not everyone plays the same role.
  • The goal is to facilitate communication that will connect with decision makers’ issues of concern, lead to cooperative solutions, and demonstrate the value of extension people, programs and resources.