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County Office Leadership

The NDSU Extension Service County Extension Office Chair serves as the contact for county Extension administrative and program matters, and is administratively responsible to the District Director, NDSU Extension Service, and the Board of County Commissioners and/or Tribal Council for carrying out these duties and responsibilities. The County Extension Office Chair will work in concert with other professional and support staff to carry out the responsibilities discussed below.

1. Administration

a) Ensure that communication exists between the county office and County Commission and/or Tribal Council on a timely basis.
b) Provide leadership for office coordination of program development, personnel, budget and public relations.
c) Facilitate effective lines of communication among all office personnel.
d) Consult with District Director and other office staff when developing position descriptions, conducting screening, and in the selection process of filling vacant paraprofessional and secretarial positions.
e) Consult with District Director as necessary to reach acceptable solutions on matters concerning personnel and programming issues.

2.Interoffice Communications

a) Initiate regular staff conferences to discuss program, personnel and budget matters.
b) Facilitate a favorable work environment.
c) Provide leadership for appropriate orientation of new personnel.
d) Keep the District Director informed about personnel, program, and budget matters.
e) Encourage a climate of trust and cooperation among all staff in the office.

3. Office Management

a) Facilitate a business-like office with a friendly work environment that projects a favorable image to clientele.
b) Work closely with other professional staff in the orientation and supervision of support staff.
c) Cooperate with the other professional staff in the office in the coordination of the workload of the support staff and ensure equitable support service for all staff in the office.
d) Encourage completion of administrative and program reports and forms such as the North Dakota Youth Protection Policy, ES-237, narratives, QPRs, etc.
e) Coordinate 4-H financial management procedures in consultation with the designated.

4. Resource Procurement and Accountability

a) Be responsible for the administration and management of the county Extension budget, in accordance with the county and/or tribe and NDSU Extension Service guidelines and policy.                 
b) Keep an accurate accounting of county expenditures and the status of the county budget, grants and other funds with professional and support staff via monthly tracking.
Reference: General Grant Proposal Guidelines for County Extension Employees (PDF)
c)  Consult with other Extension staff and work with the District Director to develop an adequate annual office budget.  Reference: Base Policy for Extension Financial Partnership between County and State (PDF updated September 2004)

5. Program Coordination

a) Provide leadership and initiate procedures for development, implementation and evaluation of an integrated Extension program though regular staff meetings and program planning meetings.          
b) Provide leadership for overall coordination and integration of the total Extension program utilizing local work groups (focus groups) and advisory council.                 
c) Provide leadership for reporting the effectiveness of the total Extension effort in the county with decision makers.

6. Other Responsibilities

 a) Responsible for carrying out direction, leadership and coordination related to Title VI and VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 and assuring nondiscrimination on the basis of disability in light of the Americans with Disabilities Act and Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act.  Insures that all programs and activities are conducted in a manner which does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national origin, religion, sex (gender), disability, age, Vietnam Era Veterans status, sexual orientation, status with regard to marriage or public assistance, or participation in lawful activity off the employer’s premises during nonworking hours which is not in direct conflict with the essential business-related interests of the employer.
b) Responsible for promoting the importance and value of diversity as it relates to the NDSU Extension Service mission, working toward the goal to create and maintain an organizational climate that respects diversity among staff, volunteers and audiences, as well as providing programs that lead to increased diversity in Extension audiences in North Dakota.  Provide leadership to the completion of the County Civil Rights Annual Audit each September.  
Reference: Commitment to Diversity and Civil Rights

c) Coordinate the implementation and maintenance of the Youth Protection Policy as it relates to paid staff, assuring that all staff follow the written policy, which clearly defines management practices to prevention of child abuse in North Dakota. Responsibility is delegated to the county 4-H Contact for implementation and maintenance of the policy relating to 4-H volunteers.  
Reference: Youth Protection Policy

d) Encourage all staff members to follow the guidelines of safety and risk management policies established by NDSU, county or tribal government, which places a high priority on the prevention of accidents and injuries, quality health care for injured employees and a return-to-work assistance program.  
Reference: Police and Safety Office Training    

Updated January 2014

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