Local News

Russell, Ellsworth County Extension Agencies Merge

K State ExtensionEffective July 1, the Kansas State University Research and Extension Agencies in Russell and Ellsworth Counties will merge to form the Midway Extension District.

Brent Goss, current Ellsworth County Agriculture and Natural Resources Extension Agent, says with the recent retirements of longtime Russell County agents John Stannard and Joann Paschal, now seemed like a great time to combine the districts to save money and more importantly, offer more opportunities to local folks.

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Goss also said the similarities between the two counties - size, population, types of crops planted, etc. - makes the merger a good idea as well.

He said at the current time, three agents with various specialties are working with the district. They are Goss, Youth and 4-H Development Agent Dusti Cason, and Family and Consumer Sciences Agent Jamie Rathbun. Cason is based in Russell, while Goss and Rathbun are based in Ellsworth. 

Goss will deal with livestock, lawn care, crops and gardening questions and concerns. Rathbun will take care of nutrition, food safety, parenting, financial management, health and safety. Cason will work closely with the local 4-H chapters and schools.

They hope to eventually hire one more agent when they see what specialties are still needed after the merger.

The new district will be governed by an eight-person board of four representatives from each county.

For more information, contact the Russell County, soon to be Midway District, Extension Office.

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