Nominations are being accepted for the ANR Staff Appreciation and Recognition (STAR) Program until March 31. The purpose of the award program is to recognize and reward outstanding staff individual and team performance within Agriculture and Natural Resources.
Under the STAR Program, managers are able to recognize, acknowledge and reward employees for exceptional performance and/or significant contributions related to and supportive of individual, departmental, divisional, and/or organizational goals and objectives.
Managers may acknowledge and reward individuals and teams demonstrating:
- Exceptional performance: Demonstrated and sustained exceptional performance that consistently exceeds goals and work expectations in quantity and/or quality.
- Creativity: One-time innovation or creation that results in time/dollar savings, revenue enhancement, and productivity improvement; and/or ongoing innovative/creative activities that benefit organizational systems, protocols, and/or procedures.
- Organizational abilities: Exhibiting extraordinary skills in leadership resulting in the accomplishment of significant departmental or divisional goals and objectives; effective project management, which could include developing a project and/or implementing a project with substantial success; and/or demonstrating organizational capability leading to a greater level of effectiveness.
- Work success: Significantly exceeding productivity, customer service, quality of care or similar goals, including demonstrating superior interactions with managers, peers, supervisors, subordinates, the University community, and/or clients and customers served.
- Teamwork: For team awards, the following criteria, plus the criterion above, will be considered. Acting as an exceptionally effective and cooperative team member or team leader for a team that has significantly exceeded the goals/objectives of the department/unit.
To read the STAR award guidelines and restrictions and to download the nomination form, see the attachments.
Application and selection process:
February 2016: The call for nominations is distributed to all ANR unit directors.
No later than March 31, 2016: Nomination applications submitted via e-mail to email@example.com.
April - May 2016: An appointed review committee will review applications submitted by the due date. The committee will select up to 20 individuals and two teams to be awarded.
May 2016: Unit directors and award winners are notified of the final decisions.
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This announcement is also posted and archived on the ANR Update page.
Poor management of grazed rangelands can "exacerbate the effect of drought," the report said.
The Forest Service identified the need to reduce cattle numbers on public land during a severe drought - in come cases to 50 or 70 percent of total carrying capacity, which is the number of animals the land can support before causing environmental degradation. Plants that have been overgrazed "are less able to recover after a drought," the report said.
For expert commentary, Danovich turned to a UC Agriculture and Natural Resources (UC ANR) source. Sheila Barry, the livestock and natural resources advisor for UC ANR Cooperative Extension, said ranchers do have to reduce herd size in times of extreme drought.
Cattle that graze on the open range are usually finished at a feed lot. In the first year of drought, ranchers have the option of weaning cattle early to reduce demands on the land without reducing the herd size. In the second year of drought, ranchers have to consider cutting into their herds. "As soon as they do that," Barry said, "it can take up to eight years to build it back."
As a UC ANR employee, you automatically have membership to a top-notch professional development resource. To take your career to the next level of performance, check out CEB Learning & Development. It takes seconds to register or reset a password and participate in webinars, download job aids and participate in discussion forums.
Here is a quick list of a few CEB resources:
Resources for All Employees – Develop yourself as a high-performing employee, not only effective at your tasks, but also as someone who contributes to others' performance and uses others' contributions to improve your own performance.
On-the-Job Activity Builder – Use this interactive tool to build employee development plans with recommended on-the-job learning activities based on the competencies you select.
Manager Guide: Holding Effective Career Discussions – Guide your direct reports through identifying and progressing toward their career aspirations.
Manager Excellence Resource Center – Search the online portal (separate from the Learning & Development member website) to find manager development and employee development resources.
Visit https://www.cebglobal.com/public/learning-development to get the most out of your CEB Learning & Development membership for yourself and your program.
ANR Training and Development coordinator
In years past, canning knowledge was passed down from grandmothers and mothers to children. Access to commercially canned and frozen fruits and vegetables put home food preservation on the back burner. The Master Food Preserver program was established in the 1980s, but is now seeing a surge in interest as consumers want more control over the sources and additives in their food.
"The UC Master Food Preserver Program serves as a reliable resource for research-based information on home food preservation," said Missy Gable, who overseas the program for UC Agriculture and Natural Resources.
Improperly preserved food can cause serious illness. Meats, vegetables and any food containing meats or vegetables - such as soup or spaghetti sauce - must be pressure-canned to prevent potentially fatal botulism. Incorrect procedures can allow micro organisms to spoil canned foods.
"Each UC Master Food Preserver volunteer understands food safety and the steps needed to safely preserve and store foods," Gable said. "They also understand the science behind home food preservation and help the public identify the best food preservation methods for the items they would like to store."
The Master Food Preserver Program is available in 10 California counties. Learn more about food preservation and find a local program on the UC ANR Master Food Preserver website.
A UC Agriculture and Natural Resources researcher has been working for 15 years to develop Pierce's disease-resistant grapevines and he's read to unleash them into the world.
"Spraying to control for PD won't pass environmental muster," said Andy Walker, UC ANR viticulture geneticist and professor in the Department of Viticulture and Enology at UC Davis. "And GMOs are problematic. For us, the best way forward is through classical breeding."
The project is based on the identification several years ago of a single dominant gene in a Mexican grape species - Vitis arizonica - that promises to confer resistance to Pierce's disease. After making a series of cross breeds resulting in a vines that are 94 percent Vitis vinifera, Walker has developed vines that are similar to any Zinfandel or Sauvignon Blanc grapes, but will never get PD.
The writer reviewed the wines produced with Walker's research grapes and declared them impressive overall.
For more on this research, see Breeding and genetics key to stemming Pierce's disease in UC ANR's California Agriculture journal.