Truman's Spotlight

Truman Tiger with spotlights
Truman's Spotlight is a feature that celebrates innovative faculty and staff efforts and programming that are making a difference in communities and counties across Missouri.

Know someone who deserves to be in the Spotlight? Please share your idea in the Submit Your Story Idea form. In the Program/Project/Event/Idea field, note that this is for Truman's Spotlight consideration.

  1. Sue Robison

    Y partnership keeps seniors connected

    When Sue Robison moved to Carroll County last year to serve as county engagement specialist in nutrition and health, the county’s senior center was closed to the public due to COVID-19. Almost a quarter of the 8,600 people in the county are seniors, and the center’s closing had a big impact on the health and social lives of the county’s older residents. Sue reached out to the Carroll County Area YMCA. Together, they developed a plan to merge existing YMCA programs with MU Extension offerings. Over the last year, the new offerings drew dozens of seniors from around the county. The relationship between Carroll County YMCA and MU Extension can be mirrored in other places around Missouri to help ease programming difficulties.

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  2. David Burton with 5 awards received at Neighborhoods USA conference

    MU Extension specialist wins 5 national awards at Neighborhoods USA conference

    What started as a resolution by Greene County community development specialist David Burton to forge more connections with people who lived nearby became an MU Extension program that earned five national awards at the 2022 Neighborhoods USA conference, May 3-7 in Little Rock, Arkansas.

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  3. Victory Over Virus garden sign

    Gardening for a greater tomorrow

    Shell Knob resident Twilia Harrison had an inspiration for a way to grow community after months of pandemic-related disruptions. She tapped Georgia Whitlock, vice chair of the MU Extension Council in Barry County. She, in turn, reached out to Barry County dairy specialist Reagan Bluel and horticulture specialist Robert Balek. In partnership with a local church’s community garden, they’ve launched the Victory Over the Virus gardening program. More than 40 people showed up for the first monthly meeting, eager to start or expand their own gardens and share tips with neighbors.

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  4. Sarah Geist

    Food tastings are on the menu in this elementary school nutrition class

    Nutrition program associate Sarah Geist has been working with Macon Elementary School to deliver nutrition classes to children. But the students don’t just learn about different foods. They also get to eat them and experience first-hand that healthy foods can taste great, too.

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  5. The CEC team in front of a community mural in Hannibal, MO

    Creating Entrepreneurial Communities: Promoting community revitalization through entrepreneurship

    Last September, more than 70 people gathered in Hannibal for the 2021 Creating Entrepreneurial Communities conference. Various speakers and key people in MU Extension came to talk about what it takes to bolster economic prosperity in Missouri's counties. Due to the success of this inaugural event, next year's conference is already in the works.

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  6. Jennifer Williams

    Food Truck Festival: Just one of the ways to nourish a county

    Jennifer Williams, county engagement specialist (CES) in community economic development, has been going above and beyond for MU Extension in Carter County. One of the most exciting things? Jennifer planned and put on the first annual Current River Food Truck Festival in Van Buren. That's not all she's done to nourish the county.

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