On September 23, 2010, Peggy Powell, Montgomery Country Extension Agent for Family and Consumer Sciences (FCS), received a very prestigious award from the National Extension Association of Family and Consumer Sciences (NEAFCS). She was named the Extension Educator of the Year. Powell proudly accepted the award and also presented some of her excellent work during the Showcase of Excellence display.
To receive this award, one must first pass several stipulations, Powell did so with ease. To be eligible you have to be a member of NEAFCS for at least 12 years, Powell has been a member for more than 37 years. The recipient must already have earned the association’s Distinguished Service Award, which Powell accepted in 1992, and the Continued Excellence Award, which she earned in 1997. Another requirement of the award is that the applicant must have attended at least four annual sessions, Powell has attended 30.
The purpose of the award is to recognize a professional Extension Family and Consumer Sciences Educator who is conducting outstanding educational programs that demonstrate impact on families. Powell has been able to lead and deliver many programs that have improved the lives of families in Montgomery County and beyond. Some of the educational programs that Powell has been involved with recently include:
- Pandemic Flu: Worked on prevention and educational materials while serving on the UK Pandemic Flu Prevention Task Force
- Colon Cancer Prevention: Served on the Kentucky Colon Cancer Prevention committee (KCCP) and developed educational materials used state wide
- Living Green: Involved in implementing the environmental education program to 1,485 homemakers through multi-county programming.
- Physical Activity Initiative: Member of the Montgomery County Physical Activity Coalition whose purpose is to encourage people to participate in physical activity more regularly and to ensure that facilities are available to them.
- Mental Health in Aging Initiative: Helped in the educational program designed to increase community knowledge about normal and pathological mental health aging and access to resources that could potentially decrease disparities for rural elders.
Powell’s many accomplishments as an educator have been realized while holding leadership positions in professional and community organizations. Her achievements have been recognized through numerous awards. She has served as president and vice president of the Kentucky Extension Association of Family and Consumer Sciences (KEAFCS), and received numerous recognitions for her programming and leadership. She has served as president of the Kentucky chapter of Epsilon Sigma Phi, and received that organization’s Visionary Leadership and Distinguished Service Awards. In Montgomery County she is active in a wide variety of community organization and groups, including the AARP chapter, Mount Sterling Rotary Club, Montgomery County Education Foundation, Montgomery County Youth Service Center Advisory Council, and the Gateway Aging Council. In 1994, Powell received the Mount Sterling-Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce’s Woman of the Year Award.
Powell has been involved in countless other programs and activities, all covering a wide variety of topics. Her dedication to serving families throughout her career has been steadfast, and this national recognition is a strong testament to her impact.
“Peggy Powell exemplifies what it means to be a Family & Consumer Sciences Agent. She is a community leader focused on strengthening families, individuals and communities through her work as an agent. She is a role model for all of us in Family & Consumer Sciences Extension,” said Dr. Ann Vail, Director of the School of Human Environmental Sciences.
Powell received her bachelor’s degree from Berea College in Home Economics Education and her master’s from the University of Kentucky in Human Development and Resource Management. She first became involved with Kentucky Cooperative Extension as the Montgomery County Agent for Home Economics nearly 39 years ago. She worked briefly as a Program Specialist for UK Home Economics Extension before she transitioned back to Montgomery County Extension Agent for Family and Consumer Sciences.
Powell’s qualifications go above and beyond the requirements of the award and it is such an honor to have her as a FCS Agent in Kentucky. She demonstrates excellence in the areas of programming, professional development and leadership. Her hard work, determination, and creativity have certainly benefitted Kentucky families