Major Responsibilities: County Extension Director (CED)


The major responsibility of this position is the delivery of educational information and programs to the citizens of the county, with specific emphasis on efforts to insure the application of this knowledge. This responsibility may be discharged in three ways:

  • The CED has a basic program delivery role in one of the seven Extension program areas.
  • The CED ensures that a total county Extension program is in place and functioning properly. In this role, he/she leads, coordinates, and manages the total county program.
  • The CED administers the operations of the county Extension office. In this role, he/she is responsible for budget preparation, supervision of all professional and clerical staff, relations with public officials, and other typical administrative matters. The CED is also responsible for the implementation of EEO, ADA, UF's Diversity plan, and other affirmative action programs.

The CED is responsible to his/her District Director for all programs and administrative matters in the assigned county. The CED determines the amount of time which he/she spends on program delivery, program leadership, and administration in concert with the District Extension Director.

Functions and Tasks of the CED

The CED's duties fall into three areas of responsibility: (A) educational programming, (B) overall leadership of the total county educational program, and (C) county office administration.

A. Individual Program Responsibility

  • Conducts educational programs in his/her designated area of responsibility to help people more effectively interpret and use findings of science and technology.
    • Assumes responsibility for developing and executing a plan of work.
    • Involves the respective program advisory committees in the development and implementation of programs.
    • Involves resources of the University of Florida and the community to effectively implement county programs.
    • Identifies, recruits, and develops leaders to carry out the program in the county.
    • Assumes responsibility for the 4-H program within the area of competency or subject-matter.
    • Develops and uses appropriate systems for reporting program accomplishments.
    • At all times functions as a professional educator.
  • Follows a sound process in developing educational programs in his/her designated program area.
    • Works with the program advisory committee to analyze the county situation and identify priority problems.
    • Establishes clear objectives and uses appropriate subject-matter content and learning experiences to reach these objectives.
    • Designs and implements a variety of program delivery methods to reach target clientele.
    • Takes necessary action to ensure that sufficient groundwork is laid for programs to succeed.
    • Evaluates results and accounts to appropriate publics for program accomplishments.
  • Develops an understanding of the county, the needs of its citizens, and Extension's role in meeting those needs.
    • Assesses the county situation in terms of social and economic factors.
    • Assesses the role of the County Extension Service in effecting changes in the county situation.
    • Continuously examines his/her role as a change agent.

B. Leadership of the Total County Extension Program

  • Develops and carries out policies and procedures necessary to execute a total county program. Delegates certain program responsibilities to other faculty members but is accountable for the overall county Extension program.
    • Assists county faculty and the Overall Advisory Committee in identifying types and sources of information needed to plan the county Extension program.
    • Provides leadership for county faculty and the Overall Advisory Committee in analyzing and interpreting information needed in the planned county program.
  • Develops and maintains a comprehensive understanding of the role of Florida CES as an educational agency and the implications of its role for administration and programming for the county.
    • Understands the philosophy, objectives, and policies of Florida CES.
    • Encourages county Extension faculty members to maintain an understanding of the philosophy, objectives, and policies of Florida CES.
    • Understands and encourages faculty members to gain an understanding of the organization and use of Extension resources.
    • Understands his/her role as CED and the relationship of the role to others in Extension.
    • Understands, implements, and promotes EEO, ADA, UF's Diversity plan, and other affirmative action programs within the County Extension Service.
  • Develops and maintains for him/herself and helps other faculty members to develop and maintain a comprehensive understanding of the County Extension Service as a functioning component of the Florida CES.
    • Provides leadership for the county faculty in assessing the county in terms of social and economic factors.
    • Interprets for the county faculty the role of the County Extension Service in effecting changes in the county.
    • Continuously examines with his/her faculty their role as change agents.
    • Provides leadership for his/her co-workers in thinking through plans for involving county leadership in planning, implementing, and evaluating county Extension programs.
  • Implements and maintains functional Extension advisory committees to insure clientele and leader input into local Extension programs. Has direct responsibility for the organization and functioning of the Overall County Extension Advisory Committee. Should consult other faculty members on the membership of the Overall Advisory Committee, to which program area advisory committees are integral.
    • Interprets the role of the various County Extension Advisory Committees to the county faculty.
    • Identifies with members of the county faculty the qualifications needed by leaders to perform effectively on the Overall Advisory Committee.
    • Collaborates with the county faculty and the leadership of key county organizations in the identification and selection of leaders to serve on the Overall County Advisory Committee.
    • Cooperates with and counsels other county faculty on the development and implementation of appropriate program area advisory committees.
    • Reviews recommendations from the Overall Advisory Committee and the program area committees to establish priorities and make modifications for the planned county program.
  • Accepts the responsibility of leadership in preparing and submitting on schedule a well-coordinated and integrated county plan of work.
    • Understands and communicates to the faculty the purpose of the plan of work and its relationship to the planned county program.
    • Provides leadership for county faculty in analyzing the planned program to determine which program areas and problems should be focused on in the immediate and succeeding plans of work.
    • Counsels with county faculty in determining the time sequence for developing educational plans for attacking problems enumerated in the planned program.
    • Takes the leadership in assisting the county faculty to develop an integrated county plan of work.
    • With the county faculty, apprises the Overall Advisory Committee of educational plans outlined for a designated time to address problems enumerated in the planned program.
  • Provides leadership for the county faculty in communicating the planned Extension program to the people.
    • Takes leadership and cooperates with his/her co-workers in preparing a popularized version of the planned county Extension program.
    • Acts as liaison or designates an appropriate county faculty member to represent the Extension faculty in communicating the program to personnel of related agencies and organizations.
    • Establishes and maintains rapport with personnel of the mass media and arranges for appropriate releases and presentations.
    • Utilizes all available channels of communication to insure comprehensive public understanding of the planned program.
  • Provides leadership in planning and initiating action needed to implement all areas of program responsibility in the planned program.
    • Assists county faculty in determining activities to be undertaken in the implementation of the Plan of Work.
    • Provides leadership for county faculty in determining and obtaining resources needed to implement the Plan of Work.
    • Counsels with county faculty on the recruitment and selection of leaders to assist in carrying out the Plan of Work.
    • Assists county faculty in planning for and providing the training needed to equip leaders and faculty members to carry out assigned program responsibilities.
    • Encourages and assists county faculty members in developing and maintaining two-way channels of communication with leaders in carrying out various activities encompassed in the Plan of Work.
    • Provides opportunities for county faculty to discuss problems and progress in carrying out the Plan of Work.
  • In cooperation with the District Extension Director and county faculty, develops and implements a plan for evaluating the planned county Extension program and appropriately reporting results.
    • Provides leadership in determining the effectiveness of the planned county program.
    • Continuously assesses the total county Extension program and plans with the county faculty for needed program modifications.
    • Helps determine the progress made in the achievement of long-range objectives.
    • Coordinates his/her and other county faculty members' preparation and submission of reports on the achievement of program objectives.
    • Insures that all county reports are prepared and submitted on schedule and in accordance with policy.
    • Utilizes the results of evaluations to suggest needed changes in implementing the planned county program.
    • Provides leadership in maintaining accountability to local officials, leaders, and the general public by appropriately reporting program activities and results.

C. Administrative/Management Responsibilities

  • In cooperation with the District Extension Director and County Commissioners or County Manager, accepts responsibility for preparation and maintenance of the county Extension budget. Makes all official contacts pertaining to the county budget, unless circumstances necessitate and prior arrangements have been made for another faculty member or District Extension Director to assist in or to conduct this function. In the best interest of Extension's efforts, seeks other faculty members' assistance in presenting the budget request.
    • Counsels with county faculty in determining needs for adequate housing, office equipment, supplies, demonstration materials, etc.
    • Counsels with the District Extension Director in the preparation of the county Extension budget, including county contributions for salary adjustments.
    • The CED and District Extension Director or both together will present and defend the proposed budget to county administration or county commissioners. In cases of potential conflict regarding county/state responsibilities for budget, the District Extension Director will represent the state budget plan.
    • Prepares county budget requests with assistance of other appropriate persons. After approval by the District Director, presents and justifies budget requests to the County Commissioners.
    • Submits copies of the County-approved budget to the District Director and informs appropriate faculty members about parts of the budget pertinent to their areas of responsibility.
    • Insures that appropriated county funds are used in accordance with the laws and statutes that regulate the handling of public funds and in keeping with the intent of those officials concerned. To this end, keeps adequate records.
  • Accepts the responsibility for personnel management of the county Extension faculty and clerical staff. Coordinates county Extension faculty's activities and provides overall guidance, but also gives each faculty member the encouragement and flexibility to develop and execute his or her phase of the program.
    • Cooperates with the District Extension Director in selecting new county Extension faculty.
    • In cooperation with the District Director, presents prospective employees to the Board of County Commissioners for approval .
    • Collaborates with the District Director and the county Extension faculty in the assignment of job responsibilities for each county faculty member.
    • Cooperates with the District Director, when required, and appropriate county faculty members in planning for and providing county-level training for new faculty members.
    • Creates a climate conducive to high morale and seeks to generate good working relationships among members of the county faculty.
    • Confers with the District Director on performance evaluations of county faculty.
    • Confers with the District Director on title changes, promotions, and salary adjustments for county faculty.
    • In collaboration with other county faculty members, recruits, selects, and recommends for appointment secretarial and other staff for the county Extension office.
    • Insures that secretarial workloads are equitably distributed.
  • Encourages the county faculty to maintain a high level of professional competence.
    • Encourages the establishment of personal and professional goals.
    • Reviews and evaluates personal and professional goals in relation to personal aspirations and the demands of the job.
    • Identifies and evaluates potential professional development opportunities.
    • Takes leadership in developing professional improvement programs in accordance with his/her and the other county faculty members' levels of competence and professional objectives.
    • Obtains the counsel and approval of the District Director in developing and implementing professional improvement programs for him/herself and the county faculty.
  • Insures that the county Extension faculty have the necessary office space, furnishings, and equipment. Consults with the other county faculty members and the District Director to obtain their recommendations on the use of available funds and facilities.
  • Maintains regular and meaningful communications among faculty.
    • Holds regular and appropriate faculty meetings and provides copies of minutes to faculty members and the District Director.
    • Provides an opportunity at faculty meetings for each faculty member to report and discuss significant accomplishments, experiences, and current situations.
    • Reviews and apprises county faculty of communications from IFAS and Extension Administration and Supervision.
    • Communicates to Extension Administration about changing situations or problems in the county which relate to Extension work.
  • Is responsible for overseeing and ensuring county Extension's compliance with all aspects of the affirmative action program, including ADA, EEO Sexual Harassment, and UF's Diversity plan.
    • Discusses affirmative action programs at faculty and staff meetings.
    • Reviews affirmative action programs with all advisory committees.
    • Reviews the Plan of Work and Report of Accomplishment with each agent to determine compliance with the Affirmative Action Plan and All Reasonable Efforts.
    • Works with appropriate county officials to assure ADA compliance in facilities.
    • Works with the District Director to plan action to correct any deficiencies in compliance with affirmative action programs.