Chief translational science officer.

The PREEC director is IANR’s lead for ensuring programs, initiatives, and accomplishments are highly responsive to the Panhandle’s precision cropping and livestock production, and surface and groundwater systems, respectively.

The PREEC Director is a collaborative and strategic partner with the leaders of the following, Extension program areas, and centers and institutes:

  • Departments and Schools:
    • Agricultural Economics, Agronomy and Horticulture, Animal Science, Biological Systems Engineering, Entomology, Natural Resources, Plant Pathology, and Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.
  • Nebraska Extension Focus Areas:
    • Beef Systems, Water and Integrated Cropping Systems, and Rural Prosperity Nebraska.
  • Centers and Institutes:
    • Center for Agricultural Profitability, Center for Grassland Studies, Center for Resilience in Agricultural Working Landscapes, the Daugherty Water for Food Institute.
  • State Agencies and Offices:
    • Conservation Survey Division, Nebraska Forest Service, and the Nebraska State Climate Office.
  • Actively partners with academic unit leaders to nurture the success of the tenure-track faculty assigned to the PREEC through collaborative coaching, regular touchpoints, and by providing written feedback into annual reviews.
  • The PREEC Director works closely and collaboratively the coordinators of Nebraska Extension’s Engagement Zones 1, 2, 3, and 4 to augment their work with local leaders and elected officials and who supervise Extension professionals working in the areas of Community Environment, The Learning Child, Food Nutrition and Health and 4-H Youth Development.
  • Convenes the PREEC Advisory Council.

Managing PREEC facilities, research, outreach and teaching and learning infrastructure, and operations.

The Director works with the ARD assistant dean on matters related to day-to-day management of PREEC operations including:

  • Managing financial and physical resources responsibly to maximize the effectiveness of those resources, exhibiting fiscal discipline and transparency, and utilizing best fiscal management practices.
  • Making decisions about operational activities that collaboratively advance the statewide REEC strategic plan.
  • Developing, implementing, and monitoring day-to-day operational systems and processes to ensure progress.
  • Attracting, hiring, mentoring, and retaining a diverse pool of talent.
  • Building a culture of trust through open, honest, and transparent communications in a manner that aligns with UNL’s N2025 strategic framework in which every person and every interaction matters.
  • Supervising, managing, and mentoring PREEC staff, i.e., office support, communications, and farm operations staff, including approving leave and time for hourly employees.
  • Partnering with the leadership of IANR’s Greater Nebraska Business Center (GNBC) to ensure that the efforts of this embedded team maximally support the activities and impacts of all IANR faculty, staff and students assigned to and/or working through the PREEC.
  • Planning, monitoring, and analyzing key metrics for the day-to-day performance of operations to ensure efficient and timely completion of tasks.
  • Ensuring compliance with federal and state regulations regarding safety, environment, and if appropriate, handling and disposing of hazardous wastes and biosafety.
  • Engaging in professional development to continually hone skills to effectively lead and manage the Center’s operations and initiatives, and to advance its strategic direction

Nurturing a collaborative and inclusive culture within the PREEC

  • Leading the team with integrity, and establishing and maintaining a trusting, inclusive, and productive culture within PREEC and its affiliated locations.
  • Actively support and promote the research, engagement, and teaching/learning activities at PREEC.
  • Ensuring opportunities are open to all, programs are inclusive of all constituencies, and efforts are made to engage diverse audiences, especially those that are traditionally under-represented.
  • Communicating with transparency and clarity to faculty, staff, students, and stakeholders all aspects of the Center’s initiatives, operations, challenges, and opportunities.
  • Developing robust PK-16 pathway programs in partnership with CASNR- and CEHS-based academic units and centers that provide opportunities for experiential learning, attainment of micro-credentials (certificate and digital badge programs), and degree completion pathways. 
  • Ensuring all programs of the Center are administered in accordance with the university’s affirmative action/equal opportunity/diversity programs in a manner that advances IANR’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusive Excellence goals.

Being an active, informed, and collaborative member of IANR’s expanded leadership team.

  • Serving as the ‘eyes, ears, and voices’ of the IANR senior leadership team when they are not present in the Panhandle and doing so in a way that ensures a unified voice is being projected.
  • Building, cultivating, and maintaining highly informed and articulated relationships with other leaders within IANR (e.g., department heads, school directors, deans, program leaders, and extension zone coordinators) and other constituencies/stakeholders (e.g., advisory groups, commodity boards, community and industry partners) for input and to ensure that IANR resources are fully leveraged to drive innovative and translational research, extension, and teaching and learning programming.
  • Partnering collaboratively with the Coordinator of Engagement Zone 1 – and with those in Zones, 2, 3 and 4 as appropriate – to ensure that key needs of the citizens of the Panhandle are being met and in a manner that reduces role duplication and/or confusion.
  • Representing IANR to the communities served by PREEC related to all aspects of how IANR’s research, teaching and extension efforts might be mobilized to develop data-informed solution sets that add value specifically related to agricultural and natural resource systems and rural prosperity.
  • Developing and implementing a relevant and opportunistic outcomes-based shared vision for PREEC that is harmonized with the efforts of the engagement zone coordinators, the statewide REEC Strategic Plan, and regional needs.
  • Coordinating with the director of IANR Communications to develop a robust and impactful storytelling, public relations and program marketing platform that highlights impacts and accomplishments of the PREEC and IANR.

The incumbent accepts committee assignments, reporting responsibilities, and other special ad hoc assignments as requested at the administrative unit, college/division, institute, and/or university level.