CORVALLIS - The Oregon State University Extension Association honored its top educators at a recent awards ceremony on the OSU campus, where recipients received recognition for outstanding work in Extension education, communication and leadership.

The Alberta B. Johnston award for Excellence in Extension Education went to Nellie Oehler, coordinator of the Master Food Preserver and Family Community Leadership programs in the Lane County office of the OSU Extension Service in Eugene. Oehler was cited for the quality and creativity of her educational programs and her years of service to Extension as a teacher, facilitator, mentor and leader.

Charles Boyer, head of the OSU Department of Horticulture, received the Alberta B. Johnston Extension Leadership award. Boyer was recognized for his contributions to Extension programs throughout the state and leadership of the horticulture department faculty and staff, which includes 20 Extension Service faculty based in county Extension offices.

Nancy Kershaw, a 4-H and family and community development Extension educator in Tillamook County, received the Dale and Alice Hoecker Continued Service award. Described as especially effective at building community partnerships, Kershaw was praised for the innovative and collaborative qualities of her educational programs.

Jan McNeilan of Portland, district Extension educator specializing in consumer horticulture and volunteer management for Multnomah, Clackamas and Washington counties, was honored with the Oscar Hagg Communication award. McNeilan received recognition for her regional leadership of the Extension Master Gardener Program and for her effective use of mass media, including broadcast and print media, in communicating with metro-area clientele.

Miriam Lowrie of Dallas, a 4-H Youth Extension educator, and Lynn Jensen, Ontario, Extension educator specializing in agriculture, received the association's Experienced Staff awards. Lowrie was cited for her work with 4-H youth programs in Polk and Hood River counties. Jensen was honored for his work with a variety of crops and growers in Malheur County and the Treasure Valley area.

Maureen Quinn, Portland, was honored with the OSUEA Professional Education Program Assistant award. She serves as nutrition education assistant for the Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program in the Multnomah County office of the OSU Extension Service.

Receiving the association's Classified Staff award was Beth Upshaw, La Grande, office specialist in the Union County office of the OSU Extension Service. Upshaw received recognition for her exemplary service to 4-H, forestry and family community development programs.

Debra Minar Driscoll, Dallas, family and community development Extension educator in Polk, Marion and Yamhill counties, and Mary Arnold, Corvallis, 4-H youth development specialist, were awarded Hoecker Grants for Innovative Faculty Programming. Minar Driscoll is developing a program on management of diabetes targeted to Oregon's Latino community, and Arnold is developing an evaluation process for 4-H educational programming.

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Evie Engel Liss, 541-737-0807