2020 Virtual Conference

Live Speakers - thank you for agreeing to participate virtually! We appreciate your support of ACE!



Keynote Speaker


Mary Olivieri and Candice Hudson, CBD Marketing 

Turning Complicated Communications into Engaging Content

Thursday, June 25 at 9:30 am, CDT

Skilled in Creative Direction (of both designers and copywriters), Digital Strategy, Copywriting, Creative Concepting, Branding, Integrated Creative Strategy, Digital/Creative/Production Team Management, and Leadership. I have a passion for solving complicated marketing problems with creative ideas that actually mean something to the target. I am a self-proclaimed emotional marketing geek who believes in marketing products and services that will actually be valuable to someone. And I have an expertise in drilling down to the emotional drivers that will provide your customers with a meaningful experience with your brand.





Keynote Speaker

Lorrie Boyer

The Ins and Outs of Successful Farm Broadcasting

Thursday, June 25 at 2:45 pm, CDT

As a 25-year expert in farm broadcasting, Lorrie Boyer has covered several intriguing issues at local, state, and national levels, while establishing solid relationships with every Ag organization in the process. Lorrie likes to see herself as a rolling stone, ever ready to take on challenges with zeal and precision. From interviews with lawmakers and ag industry experts to moderating a live broadcast with USDA Secretary of Ag, Sunny Purdue. Motivated by an intense desire for Ag-Vocacy and telling the farming and ranching story, Lorrie expressed creativity in carrying out Ag news, market reports and special human interest stories; which won her awards not only with the National Association of Farm Broadcasting Association, but with the Colorado Broadcasters Association as well. She has been named a “Friend of Ag” for several youth and state based Ag organizations, including 4H and regional FFA Chapters, Rocky Mountain Farmers Union, Colorado Association of Conservation Districts, and the Colorado Corn Growers Association.






Mary Wirth, Penn State

The Importance of Ag Comm's Role in Extension's Program Development Process

Thursday, June 25 at 11:45am, CDT

Mary is currently serving as the Director of College Relations and Communications for the Penn State College of Agricultural Sciences, where she has been since 2001.  The office is a component of the dean’s office that manages the college’s relationships and strategic communications with external audiences – with a focus on alumni, industry and legislators as well as future students and extension customers − and covers all three mission areas of the college including education, research and Extension




Linda Gilmore, Department of Communications and Agricultural Education, Kansas State University


Diversity and Inclusion in Extension: Putting Our Good Intentions into Action


Thursday, June 25 at 1:45 pm, CDT

Linda Gilmore edits and coordinates extension publications for specialists in the areas of family and consumer sciences, nutrition, 4-H, and biological and agricultural engineering at Kansas State University. She serves on the President’s Committee on Religious, Spiritual, and Nonreligious Diversity for the university and also serves on the K-State Research and Extension Diversity and Inclusion Task Force.



Rose Hayden-Smith, PhD

Technology Fellow, eXtension Foundation

Emeritus, University of California, Agriculture & Natural Resources

A Playbook for Using New & Emerging Technologies in Ag Extension

Thursday, June 25 at 4:00 pm, CDT

Rose Hayden-Smith is an Emeritus advisor with the University of California Agriculture and Natural Resources. She directed Ventura County's 4-H and Master Gardener programs, served as her county's first female director, and also led the statewide initiative in sustainable food systems. A seasoned writer, editor and digital strategist, Rose is the founding editor of the UC Food Observer blog and social presencea brand she developed in support of UC's Global Food Initiative. Her last Extension assignment was as an advisor in digital communications in Extension education. Rose is currently serving as eXtension Foundation's Technology in Extension Education Fellow. 



Mindy Tape, Manager - Michigan State University Extension Communications & Marketing


Is Anyone Listening? How to Engage Audiences When Phones are More Interesting

Thursday, June 25 at 5:00 pm, CDT

Mindy Maxwell Tape is the communications management liaison to MSU Extension’s agriculture, natural resources, community and government leadership educational staff and leadership. She provides strategic communications and marketing advice, facilitates and manages online and print communication and marketing needs for projects, programs and events. Mindy also oversees online content curation and social media for MSU Extension’s signature program, Breakfast on the Farm. She is the Constant Contact MSU Extension News Digest account coordinator responsible for custom digests and consulting. She also supervises a team of student and temporary communications and marketing staff members.





A team of faculty and graduate students from the University of Florida’s Department of Agricultural Education and Communication (AEC) and the Public Issues Education (PIE) Center collaborated on the study. Presenters for the session include: Dr. Jamie Loizzo, Dr. Cecilia E. Suarez, and Doctoral Candidate Peyton Beattie. Additional team members include: Doctoral student Bradley Coleman, Dr. Shelli Rampold, and Dr. J.C. Bunch


Blurring and blending of roles and responsibilities: Graduate students’ COVID-19 experiences

Thursday, June 25 at 11:00 am, CDT

MGraduate students hold several roles and responsibilities, including adult learner, employee, teaching assistant, researcher, guardian/caregiver, partner, and more. Due to COVID-19, social distancing, and moving college courses from face-to-face to online formats during the spring 2020 semester, many graduate students encountered blurring and blending of positions, tasks, and pressures that impacted their educational and personal lives. Presenters conducted a qualitative study of University of Florida graduate students’ COVID-19 experiences that included more than 20 interviews, photos and descriptions of participants’ work from home spaces, and humorous memes that helped participants cope. Graduate teaching assistants reported having to navigate changes to their own learning, while also trying to effectively deliver online instruction. Some graduate students working full-time had to shift their job and school responsibilities to their homes, while also caring for children, partners, and parents. One graduate student expressed frustration with the change in courses saying, “I didn’t sign up for online classes.” Another shared about loss in motivation, productivity, and concern for the future. Some felt isolated and alone, while others felt support and empathy. Presenters will share excerpts and photos of graduate students’ experiences, as well as recommendations for effectively working with and supporting graduate students online.

The University of Florida transitioned face-to-face courses to fully online instruction early March 2020. Our team of presenters for this session include faculty and graduate assistants who participated in and facilitated courses that were impacted. Feeling the impact ourselves, we recruited graduate students across the university to participate in a research study to document graduate students’ experiences during the distance learning transition. Results showed graduate student teaching assistants used a variety of pedagogical approaches and tools for engaging students in synchronous and asynchronous online learning. However, one of the largest findings of our study is that while pedagogy and tools were important, compassion, empathy, and providing additional mental and emotional support appeared to be most important for successful teaching and learning during this transition. Additionally, graduate students’ personal workflows and workspaces varied. However, most of their online work occurred in small, at-home settings with mobile devices. Many of the students described working on their devices both indoors and outdoors to support their physical and mental health. The social media memes supplied by the graduate students indicated humor along with a sense of concern for personal wellbeing, public health, and higher education in the future. Our team of presenters will make recommendations for adjustments to future courses and advising responsibilities as well as offer techniques that may provide better quality support and guidance for graduate students in both online and in-person environments. We hope results will also impact others’ perceptions of online teaching, support, and graduate student experiences during times of crisis.



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