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August 2014

National AgrAbility Project News

Fort Collins Colorado
Join us for the AgrAbility Regional Training Workshop in Ft. Collins, CO, Sept. 30th–Oct. 1st, 2014. More

Mark your calendars for the 2015 AgrAbility National Training Workshop! The NTW will be held in Rochester, New York, on April 13-16. If you are interested in serving on the NTW planning committee, please email Kylie Hendress. She will be scheduling the first meeting for September.

Chuck Baldwin has drawn up two lists of contacts for the 1994 Native American land-grant institutions, a list of the 1994's librarians, and a list of the 1994 agriculture deans, land grant directors, and/or Extension directors. More

The AgrAbility webinar Increasing Visual Accessibility on Agricultural Machinery is now archived at

A 2nd national Arthritis, Agriculture, and Rural Life Conference is being planned and a committee has been formed. More

The NAP is scheduled to have a display at the 2014 Farm Progress Show, August 26-28 in Boone, Iowa.

Paul Jones represented the NAP at the Farmer Veteran Coalition’s Midwest Conference July 25th & 26th in Des Moines. Approximately 50 participants took part in the two days of tours and presentations.

Click here for the schedule of upcoming Community of Interest and Standing Committee call information.

State and Regional AgrAbility Project News


A new consumer with multiple sclerosis contacted CalAgrAbility regarding solutions for farming with the disease, especially concerning heat-related issues during the triple-digit summers, for which California is famous. More

CalAgrAbility staff is working with Fiesta Educative, an annual rural conference for families who have children with disabilities, to learn about Northern California resources for independent living.

Summer is the time for CalAgrAbility and collaborators to join and network with one another at the local commodity fairs. More

Ability Tools LogoCalAgrAbility collaborator, The California Assistive Technology Network, has launched a new website and new logo: "Ability Tools". The website is easier to navigate and has hundreds of AT devices. Take a look at:

CalAgrAbility staff joined in on NAP's all-staff call and learned about Source America. More

CalAgrAbility staff also joined NAP's webinar, Increasing Visual Accessibility on Agricultural Machinery, where staff learned about visual aids for tractors such as mirrors and cameras that they will be sharing with consumers.

CalAgrAbility continues to collaborate on NAP's arthritis and gardening resource committee.

Three "Get Moving" arthritis exercise classes were conducted each week in July at Northern Valley Indian Health in Yolo County, and two more will be conducted in August as well as one at Northern Valley Indian Health in Willows, CA.

CalAgrAbility continues to use twitter. Follow us at


Border CollieLike many AgrAbility projects, CO AgrAbility staff have been invited to numerous county fair activities this summer. One unique invite (from the Mountain Plain Border Collie Association) was held at the Elbert County Fair in Kiowa, Colorado, on August 2nd. More


Linda Tarr visited county fairs in Southern Indiana during July and is looking forward to the Indiana State Fair in August. More

Chuck Baldwin staffed an AgrAbility display at the Kosciusko County Fair in Warsaw, IN, July 9, 2014

Kylie Hendress sent Indiana AgrAbility information packets to 75 Indiana agritourism enterprises and wineries. More

Fifteen AgrAbility staff members and volunteers are staffing the Indiana AgrAbility booth at the Indiana State Fair, which runs from August 1-17. More


Kansas AgrAbility exhibited at the state's two largest farm shows in July; the 3i Show in Dodge City, KS, and the Four State Farm Show in Pittsburgh, KS.


Lani Carlson, project coordinator for Maine AgrAbility held a farm safety workshop at the Franklin County 4-H Fair. More

ME AgrAbility Open Farm Day Display
Open Farm Day is an annual family adventure in which farms throughout Maine open their gates to offer the public an opportunity to learn about the business of agriculture. More

Quality time was spent at the AgrAbility Regional Training Workshop in Pittsburgh... More


AgrAbility's partners from the Brain Injury Association of Missouri and Department of Mental Health participated in the quarterly MOBHA Alliance face-to-face meeting. More

Lincoln University Cooperative Extension staff from the Innovative Small Farmers Outreach Program worked with the University of Missouri Extension AgrAbility staff to provide direct assistance with on-site farmstead assessments to small farmers and ranchers of Missouri... More

Jennifer Richter and Kerri Shipley, University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Pharmacy PharmD candidates, class of 2015, participated in the second year of the Pharm to Farm On-Site Farmstead Medication Assessments in partnership with the Missouri AgrAbility Project, under the supervision of Dr. Kelly Cochran. More

Pharm to Farm APPE Poster Kelly Cochran, PharmD, BCPS and Karen Funkenbusch, MS presented a poster titled: Pharm to Farm: a novel APPE delivering on-site farmstead medication assessments to rural Missourians, at the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy Annual Meeting in Grapevine,TX on July 27, 2014.


Monsanto check to NE Easter Seals - AgrAbility
Easter Seals Nebraska recently received a $10,000 grant from Monsanto to support Nebraska AgrAbility in the Monsanto site communities of Kearney, Blair, Gothenburg and Waco. More

UNL Extension Educator Sharry Nielsen staffed an AgrAbility exhibit at the International Society for Ag Safety and Health (ISASH) Annual Conference in Omaha June 22-25. More

"Kids Get Arthritis, Too" was the topic for the session presented by Sharry Nielsen of Nebraska AgrAbility at the Fairbury Safety Day July 29th. More

North Carolina

NC AgrAbility participated in the Johnston County Progressive Ag Safety Day July 15 at Lazy O Farm in Four Oaks, NC. More

NC AgrAbility partner Arthritis Foundation-Mid-Atlantic was recognized in the ASHCA Summer 2014 newsletter as a recipient of a 2014 Agricultural Safety and Health Council for America (ASHCA) Safety Grant for "Arthritis Prevention and Self-management Program for Migrant and Seasonal Farmworkers in North Carolina". More


The Ohio AgrAbility Program (OAP) was well represented at the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE) annual meeting in Montreal, Quebec, with a paper on "Ohio AgrAbility Design Solutions Developed in a First-year Engineering Innovation Course," by Dr. Kenya Crosson, University of Dayton, Dayton, Ohio. More

OAP's peer to peer network recently connected two men with similar diagnoses of paraplegia. More

OAP met with staff from the Cincinnati Veterans Administration Hospital, the founder of the East End Veterans Memorial Garden, and patients from the VA hospital, to discuss a training program for military veterans who may benefit from the experience of raising and selling agricultural products. More


PA AgrAbility Project co-hosted the AgrAbility Regional Training Workshop in Pittsburgh, PA, with Goodwill of the Finger Lakes. The program included topics such as alternative funding resources for AT, and a farm visit to see an AgrAbility/OVR success story.

PA AgrAbility will be sharing a tent with the PA Office of Rural Health at Penn State's Ag progress Day August 10-14. In addition to learning about AgrAbility's features, free health screenings and tetanus shots will be provided to anyone who stops by.


TN AgrAbility participated in the 2014 Progressive Farmer Safety Day two-day camp on the Todd Family Fun Farm in May. More

At the Milan No Till Field Day in July, Tennessee AgrAbility invited those who attended to their display tents for a little relaxation with free chair massages. More

Grain Bin Safety Disply
Tennessee AgrAbility invited KY Department of Ag Safety Instructor Dale Dobson and his summer intern to the Milan No Till Field Day.They focused on grain bin and utility vehicle safety.


Dr. Rhonda Miller presented the poster Assistive Technology for Irrigation Systems in the West at the International Society for Agricultural Safety and Health (ISASH) annual conference, June 22-26, in Omaha, Nebraska. More


WY Action Track Chair

Wyoming AgrAbility partner Wyoming Services for Independent Living, and Wyoming Disabled Hunters, demonstrated an action track chair at a motorcycle dirt race track. More

Staff Changes

NAP: In an effort to reach more of the minorities in agriculture, the NAP is now reaching beyond the 1890 land grant institutions to include the 1994 (Native American) land-grants and the Spanish-American agricultural populations. Therefore, Chuck Baldwin's title has been changed from the NAP Liaison to the 1890s to the NAP Special Populations Outreach Coordinator (SPOC). As the NAP's new SPOC, his duty is to see that AgrAbility's minority clients have the opportunity to live long and prosper.

Kansas: Kansas AgrAbility bid farewell to AT Ag Specialist Galen Seehafer, who has retired.

Maine: Hello to Jeff Baizley, the new workforces manager from Goodwill Industries of northern New England working with the Maine AgrAbility program. Jeff was at the Pittsburgh training to learn as much about the program as possible - great timing!

Nebraska:Welcome back, Del Ficke. After nearly a year pursuing other avenues, Del Ficke has returned to Nebraska AgrAbility as a rehabilitation specialist with Easter Seals Nebraska. Please help us welcome him.

TN Staff Eileen Griffin Lagault As of  August 1, Tennessee AgrAbility  would like to welcome new staff (not really new) member Eileen Griffin Legault.  Eileen worked with Tennessee and Kentucky AgrAbility before her marriage to Pierre Legault and moving to Canada. Eileen has three precious children and resides in East Tennessee.   Welcome Eileen and her family!

Vermont: Gail Lapierre has retired after more than 18 years with the University of Vermont Extension, previously in the Testing Lab and mostGail Lapierre recently with our Vermont AgrAbility Project. We wish Gail well with her post-retirement activities. Gail served faithfully on several NTW planning committees. She is well known and respected for her talents and abilities in designing hand clutches, brakes, and the like, and helping clients with added steps and hand-holds to assist them with safely mounting and dismounting their tractors. She has also made a name for herself when recommending ergonomically designed tools, especially for women. She will rarely recommend something that she hasn't tried out and tested for herself. So, if she says it'll work, you can "go to the bank with it." Now, don't be too saddened, as we have full intentions of hiring her back part-time.
You can send your thoughts and congratulations to her via email:

Wisconsin: Vicki Janisch has resigned as the Outreach Specialist for AgrAbility of Wisconsin and her last full day will be August 7th. She has accepted a new position with the Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board as the Producer Communications and Program Specialist. She is looking forward to continuing her career in the agriculture industry and working with producers in Wisconsin. She hopes to stay connected with AgrAbility because of the direct impact the program has made on her family.

AgrAbility in the News

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Other News

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Upcoming Events

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Problems? Contact Clifford Racz, National AgrAbility Project,