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University of Minnesota
Extension Center for Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources
Posted: 08/31/2021
Extension Educator, Agronomy & Water Resources (Lower St. Croix focus)

Title: Extension Educator, Agronomy and Water Resources

Classification: Assistant Extension Educator, Job Code 9625ST

Appointment: Full-time, Academic Professional, annually renewable

Program Area: Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources (AFNR)

Office Location: Washington Conservation District, Oakdale, MN. However, this position will be eligible for a flexible work agreement and telework.

Application Deadline: September 26, 2021



The goal of this position is to work with agricultural landowners and occupiers within the Lower St. Croix Basin to adopt innovative farming and land management practices to improve water quality, enhance groundwater, expand habitat, and conserve soil resources to achieve the goals of the Lower St. Croix Comprehensive Watershed Management Plan. This position is an Extension educator with the University of Minnesota, in partnership with organizations that are collectively implementing the Lower Saint Croix Comprehensive Watershed Management Plan.


· Design, develop, deliver/implement and evaluate educational programs based in scholarly/scientific theory and research, and appropriate to audience where content will include:

o Supporting and guiding implementation of agricultural-related priorities in the Lower St. Croix Comprehensive Watershed Management Plan.

o Promote practices that focus on water quality and improve natural systems to achieve these priorities.

o Coordinate and facilitate Farmer-Led initiatives and similar activities that provide long-term guidance and support through transition to regenerative agricultural practices.

o Strive to “make conservation cool.”

o Develop and promote approaches to incentivize regenerative agriculture throughout the basin.

· Provides technical expertise/advice/consultation/guidance as a subject matter expert in agronomic, regenerative agriculture, and soil health to individual land users or groups of land users. 

· Use technology for program design, program delivery, reporting, communication, trend monitoring, and locating information.

· Utilize and maintain local media and other delivery methods – such as newsletters, email, etc. - to promote programs, educate the public about agronomy and water resources and assess community needs.

· Provide guidance on economic implications of conservation practices and alternative crops. Incorporates economic data into assessments and management plans to determine most cost-effective practices and impacts on production.

· Evaluates effectiveness of agronomic practices, identify technical problems and/or deficiencies, recommend improvements, and advise and educate landowners on implementing and maintaining sound conservation management systems.

· Facilitate implementation of science-based, effective, economically viable soil health management systems on diverse agricultural lands. Support development and promotion of demonstration plots.

· Write grant applications and pursue supplemental funding opportunities that enhance implementation and partnerships.

· Prioritizes data from completed resource inventories and assessments to promote and implement best management practices (BMPs) and water quality.

· Develops comprehensive natural resource management plans with agricultural landowners.

· Facilitate positive landowner relationships with local partners for implementation of conservation planning, technical assistance, and cost share/incentive programs.

· Work with Basin Educator(s) to develops and implements outreach in close collaboration with partners to ensure seamless implementation of technical assistance and cost share delivery.

· Evaluate and measure educational effectiveness of programs

To be eligible for hiring, candidates must meet all of the following REQUIRED QUALIFICATIONS:


· Bachelor's degree in agronomy, agricultural economics, agricultural engineering, or related degree and three (3) years of directly related experience.

· Documented experience providing technical guidance and direct assistance to personnel and producers to carry out agronomic practices to improve water quality; solve complex agronomic problems on individual farms or group projects; and assist with vegetative and management practices to support regenerative agriculture, soil health, and innovative conservation practices.

· Understanding of federal, state, and local rules and regulations governing water resources.

· Proven leadership skills, successful project management experience, and attention to detail focused on agriculture and water quality.

· A proven ability to develop and maintain effective working relationships and collaborations with colleagues, stakeholders, and communities, including those that may have diverse missions, goals, cultures, and backgrounds.

· Effective communication and presentation skills,

· Experience developing and implementing educational programs and assessments


· Five or more years of professional experience.

· An advanced degree in a directly related field.

· Agronomist Certifications.

· USDA Certified Conservation Planner.

· Experience with NRCS FOTG and SCS programs.

· Current or past farming experience in the Midwest.

· Excellent verbal and written communication skills.

· Advanced skills using technology for educational programming, reporting, social media.

WORK ENVIRONMENT: This position will involve frequent travel to and within Anoka, Chisago, Isanti, Pine, and Washington Counties to meet with and deliver education to farmers, landowners, and others (tentatively 30-50% travel, but this may increase over time). Office work associated with this work includes frequent interruptions and diverse daily activities utilizing office equipment such as telephone, computers, copier, LCD projector and fax machine. Work will require the ability to perform tasks involving prolonged sitting, standing, bending, or twisting, with occasional exertion of up to thirty pounds of force, frequent repetitive motions. The general work schedule will be Monday – Friday during normal business hours, although some responsibilities may require evening and weekend meetings. Flex time and compressed work schedule are available.


● This is a full-time, Extension Educator position with an annual University Academic Professional appointment at the level of Assistant Extension Educator, Job Code 9625ST.

● The appointment will be annually renewable with continuation dependent on performance, results, availability of funds, and program needs.

● University of Minnesota appointment and benefits, including health and life insurance,

● Reimbursement for travel and subsistence is available in accordance with University policy.

● Salary commensurate with education and experience.


Please apply online at: Job Opening ID: 342919

To be considered for this position, please click the Apply button and follow the instructions. You will be given the opportunity to complete an online application for the position. Please include the following attachments with your online application:

Resume that includes your qualifications based upon the job requirements

Cover letter expressing how your experience and skills match the required and preferred qualifications

Three professional references and transcripts for all college work (unofficial transcripts are acceptable) will be required during interview process.

Additional documents may be attached after the application by accessing your “My Job Applications” page and uploading documents in the “My Cover Letters and Attachments” section.

To request an accommodation during the application process, email or call 612-624- UOHR (8647).

For questions about this position, contact:

Joel Larson, University of Minnesota Water Resources Center,

For questions about applying online, contact:

Tiffany McMillan, Extension Human Resources,

Any offer of employment is contingent upon the successful completion of a background check.

The University of Minnesota Extension shall provide equal access to and opportunity in its programs, facilities, and employment without regard to race, color, creed, religion, national origin, gender, age, marital status, disability, public assistance status, veteran status, sexual orientation, gender identity, or gender expression.