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Conference Responsibilities

For Extension/REC and Support Staff Conferences

Staff Development (Becky, Jim, Lynette)

  • Remind Extension director’s office to request committee member nominations from associations and RECs at least six months in advance
  • Provide professional development ideas generated by Program Planning Teams, Extension Leadership Team and conference evaluations
  • Make sure committee is meeting goals and progressing on schedule
  • Organize new staff dinner (Lynette)

Conference Coordinator (Elizabeth)

  • Solicit hotel bids ahead based on Extension Leadership Team input and review hotel proposed contracts
  • Revise listserv of committee members
  • Update
  • Add conference dates to the Ag and Extension calendar and the NDSU event calendar
  • Work with committee chair to schedule committee meetings
  • Review the hotel contract with the committee (confirm rooms available, times, etc.)
  • Take notes during committee meetings
  • Set up a collaborative details table for the conference that committee members can edit and review
  • Develop online registration
  • Develop estimated conference budget and keep track of ongoing income and expenses
  • Process bills for payment
  • Initiate contracts and payments for speakers (if paying additional expenses {i.e. meals, mileage} submit non-employee reimbursement form)
  • After registration is closed, email list of registrants to presenters, confirming presentation time, title, date, and length of session
  • Finalize meeting room assignments based on registration
  • Assign meeting room hosts and review tasks (equipment present and working, introduce speaker, start and end on time, make announcements as needed, take head count)
  • Complete meal count estimation sheet  with actual count for hotel
  • Review the function pages with the hotel to confirm rooms, setups, food, etc.
  • Go over committee responsibilities just before conference to confirm all details have been covered
  • Organize and bring supplies to conference
  • Print registration receipts for each registrant to hand out at registration
  • Print registration list to check-off names
  • Coordinate registration with committee the first day of conference
  • Be available for additional support during conference
  • At awards, see that committee is accommodating award speakers and recipients, greet and seat them up front with an award bookletSend each break out session presenter the evaluation comments

Committee Chair

  • Schedule and facilitate planning meetings as needed. Work with coordinator to establish procedures for web or phone conferences.
  • Make sure committee members are following up on their responsibilities
  • Send a formal invitation to ag administrators and see when they are available to speak
  • Ask director’s office to make official invitation to NDSU president when in Fargo
  • Announce conference to targeted audiences and follow-up as needed
  • At end of conference ask that all presenters put their PowerPoints and other resources on name)
  • Chair the opening conference session
  • Send a follow-up email to conference participants regarding online presentations and evaluation posted
  • Schedule a follow-up meeting to review the conference

Listservs for Fall Conference audience: allagents, nea, area, spec, all-rec

Committee Members

Before conference:

  • Participate fully in committee brainstorming, planning, etc.
  • Contact and confirm speakers as assigned (email/in writing) and ask for presentation needs

Immediately before the conference:

  • Put together and label county boxes
  • Set up registration (need 2-3 committee members to work at registration table)
  • Put certificates into frames and then in order according to the awards banquet program

During conference:

  • Serve as room hosts
  • Emcee general sessions
  • Be available to help with immediate needs that come up
  • Assist with set up and tear down (morning and evening)

Immediately after conference:

  • Help make sure everything is picked up and loaded and all equipment has been returned to its place of origin immediately following conference
  • Write thank-you notes

Room Host

  • Make sure equipment is there and working
  • Introduce speaker (optional)
  • Make sure presenter starts and ends on time during breakout sessions

Program Proposals Chair

  • Determine
  • Review and revise past proposal form
  • Distribute proposal form with deadline date and send to the following listservs: allagents, nea, area, spec, all-rec
  • Accept proposals
  • Select proposals and place in details table (plus two committee members to assist)
  • Review program draft with Extension program leaders and committee
  • Notify staff if their proposal was accepted or declined

AV Chair

  • Make a list of equipment needed and used
  • Keep track of all equipment, label if necessary
  • Make sure equipment gets delivered back to appropriate department/office with committee's help
  • Ag Comm has 20 laptops; ITS also has laptops to reserve
  • Reserve enough projectors for each meeting room plus two backups
  • Get other equipment needed/requested by presenters (audio speakers, microphone, flip charts, etc.)
  • Develop a schedule for what equipment goes in which room and when
  • Assign people to set up and take down equipment

Food Chair

  • Select meals and snacks (include beef for one meal and chocolate for one break based on staff input from past years)
  • Determine costs to base the registration fee
  • Select service style (buffet or served); if buffet, how many lines for efficiency in serving
  • Work with conference coordinator to finalize meal counts
  • Work with conference coordinator and hotel contact at least a week before conference to confirm food details. Coordinator will do initial contacts but chair should be familiar with plans and staff so they can assist as needed. Confirm final count with hotel one week prior to conference.
  • During conference, follow-up with catering if shorted, incorrect menu, accurate count, etc.
  • About 30 minutes before each meal, check room to be sure arrangements are correct and food is on time

Social Chair

  • Coordinate with NDAAEA representative to ensure funding from sponsors
  • Select venue and meal for social
  • Put social evening schedule of events in details table for program booklet
  • Coordinate with professional association on auction (2014 Ag, 2015 FCS, 2016 4-H)
  • Invite retirees to ESP luncheon and social:
  • Arrange for any other social activities (bowling, trivia, etc) planned by committee

Awards Chair

  • Determine decorations appropriate for event (Bison theme is often used and decorations are available free from Alumni Association)
  • Select emcee
  • Coordinate awards process: Epsilon Sigma Phi awards, including Friends of Extension (ESP awards chair current chair Lynette Flage), Extension Program Excellence awards (Ron Wiederholt) and Years of Service (Extension list from Kris Holt; REC list from Randy Mehlhoff)
  • Arrange for photos to be taken by Ag Communication
  • Email Years of Service honorees that they will be receiving an award
  • Create PowerPoint of honorees/nominees if desired
  • Organize awards in presentation order and hand to on-stage presenters
  • Arrange for delivering awards not presented in person

Evaluation Chair

  • Review past evaluation survey to revise survey with current agenda
  • Share evaluation results with committee and possibly presenters and administrators

Ag Communication Staff

  • Create / design logo if committee requests it
  • Arrange for Bruce/Scott for audio/video support
  • Design and print program, award booklets and award certificates
  • Take photos of award winners and distribute news releases
  • Create new employee PowerPoint if desired

REC Representatives

  • Encourage REC staff to submit ideas for break-out sessions
  • Include time for Foundation Seedstock Program staff to meet
  • Include time for a training regarding Seedstocks with input from Extension contacts (names will be provided)
  • Session on new REEport system replacing CRIS system

March 2013
Updated September 2017

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