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Maples and Moffat Honored for Dedication, Contributions to Extension

Tue, 11 Feb 2014 11:06:32 CST

Maples and Moffat Honored for Dedication, Contributions to Extension

With more than half a century of dedication and contributions between them, a pair of Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service (OCES) educators were recognized recently for their combined 53 years of service to OCES.

Jan Maples, Extension educator, family and consumer sciences/4-H youth development, and interim county Extension director in Okfuskee County; and Susan Moffat, Extension educator, community development and county Extension director (CED) in Cleveland County, each were awarded the 2014 Distinguished Educator Award during the OCES biennial conference that took place recently on the Oklahoma State University campus in Stillwater.

"I chose to be an Extension educator because of the wonderful, strong and resilient role models I had the advantage of knowing and interacting with growing up in my mother's home demonstration club," Maples said. "I observed the knowledge being gained and utilized, their support for each other and their community, and the leadership they displayed. I admit, I wanted to assist in continuing this beneficial tradition of strengthening people's lives by educating them on necessary life skills for themselves and their families."

And that is just what she has done for 29 years. She began her Extension career in Major County, but later covered both Major and Dewey counties when the two joined to form a unit. In 1993, Maples relocated to Okfuskee County where she continues to improve the lives of county residents through her programming.

She was instrumental in the development of the Career Ladder and has been a cooperator on projects such as the Journey Through Health, Consumer Ideas on Beef, Credit Card Usage Among Older Adults, Cross Cultural Framing and Deliberation of Obesity in Limited Resource Women in Oklahoma.

Maples is a talented grant writer and this skill has garnered extra funding to conduct unique programs such as Safe Homes-Secure Homes, Long-Distance Grandparenting, Ergonomics and Agricultural Women, and the list goes on. She values conducting evaluations of her programs and sees the importance of being able to document behavior and knowledge change so the impact of her programming can be shared with decision makers at all levels of administration and elected government officials.

Maples is a member, and has held a variety of offices or chaired committees on the state level, in a number of professional or service organizations, including Epsilon Sigma Phi, Oklahoma/National Extension Association of Family and Consumer Sciences, Oklahoma/National Extension Association of 4-H Agents, OCES Family and Consumer Science Ambassadors and Oklahoma Family and Community Leadership Advisory Board. She is nationally certified as a Certified Family Life Educator through the National Council on Family Relations. Maples has been active and served in leadership roles in the Okfuskee County Oklahoma Commission on Children and Youth/Turning Point Coalition Community Partnership Board.

"I'm fervent about my vocation as an Extension educator because I truly believe all persons need to be equipped with the necessary life skills to become empowered in solving their problems and enhancing their lives," Maples said. "I am humbly honored to receive this award and count myself truly blessed to work in such a meaningful profession-or vocation-as I like to refer it. Each day, I am thankful and anxious to serve the citizens in my respective areas.

"Twenty-four years of experience, coupled with values learned from my family, have played a part in the development of my career as an Extension professional," Moffat said. "Extension has always been a big part of my life. My dad was a county Extension agent and my mom was a home economics teacher. My parents' chosen professions had a large impact on my college major and eventually my career choice."

Moffat began her Extension career in Texas before moving to Logan County in 1989 to serve as the Extension home economist for six years. She then moved to Cleveland County as a family and consumer sciences Extension educator, and Moffat transitioned into the community development educator in 2008. In addition, she has served as the CED in Cleveland County since 2004.

Throughout her career, Moffat has worked tirelessly to forge new partnerships in the county, which has resulted in opportunities to reach new audiences. She was instrumental in forming a Healthy Start Committee that was later adopted by the Norman Public School Board. This resulted in the hiring of a school health coordinator and two part-time nurses.

She has assisted with strategic planning efforts with the City of Noble and several other specific projects in the county. Moffat has a great record of effective programming in FCS and 4-H. She often conducts workshops and trainings for 4-H members. A very successful partnership with adjacent counties and other community partners is the Reality Check financial literacy program. This program reaches approximately 1,000 students each fall, in McClain, Garvin and Cleveland counties with curriculum that meets the state mandated financial literacy education requirements for 9th graders. Susan also recognizes the importance of evaluation and marketing efforts for the OCES program in Cleveland County.In addition, Moffat has secured more than $200,000 in outside funding/in-kind donations to support various county programs.

Moffat is a member of several professional organizations, including Oklahoma/National Association of Family and Consumer Sciences, National Association of Community Development Extension Professionals and Epsilon Sigma Phi Extension Professionals, and has held various leadership roles within these groups.

"I have experienced great satisfaction in watching youth grow, clientele apply new information and groups reach an inclusive solution knowing that I played a significant role in their successes," Moffat said. "My ultimate goal has always been to serve the people of Oklahoma and to equip them with skills to improve their lives and their livelihood."

James Trapp, OCES associate director, said Maples and Moffat have achieved so much throughout their careers.

"It's very gratifying to see the tremendous level of achievement educators like Jan and Susan have made through their Extension programming and their commitment to the citizens of Oklahoma," Trapp said. "They each truly are worthy of the title of 'Distinguished Educator.'"

TOP PHOTO: Susan Moffat, center, recently was awarded the 2014 Distinguished Educator Award. Presenting the award are James Trapp, Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service associate director, left, and Bob LeValley, Southwest District Extension director. (Photo by Todd Johnson)

BOTTOM PHOTO: Jan Maples, center, recently was awarded the 2014 Distinguished Educator Award. Presenting the award are James Trapp, Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service associate director, left, and Dixie, Southwest District Extension director. (Photo by Todd Johnson)


Maples and Moffat Honored for Dedication, Contributions to Extension


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