I believe that mutual respect, openness, creativity and innovation — the core values of the 21st century — are the hallmarks of Cooperative Extension work.
I believe that Extension educators are called upon not only to affirm these values but also to ensure that they comprise an integral part of our work.
I believe that Extension educators constitute the most valuable of all infrastructure — human infrastructure — and that this deep reservoir built of trust and collaboration retains an infinite capacity for fostering human achievement.
I believe that we are more than simple purveyors of knowledge — we are knowledge enablers whose charge is to add value to knowledge by demonstrating how practical, meaningful and lasting use can be derived from it.
I believe that our longstanding experience with and affinity for collaborative learning, reflected in the work of Seaman Knapp and Booker T. Washington, singularly equip us for the immense challenges that await us the 21st century.
I believe that the collaborative learning embodied in Extension work is enhanced by a generous measure of empathy and compassion.
I believe that in an era of frenetic growth punctuated by rampant scarcity, we are called to be sustainers, securing and enriching the lives and livelihoods of those we serve without eroding the ability of future generations to secure and enrich theirs.
I believe that by acknowledging and celebrating our differences, we enhance opportunities for personal growth and enrichment and secure the personal freedom of and respect for all.
I believe that the prevailing winds of change are summoning us to do what we have always done best: to work, to teach and to inspire through dialogue and empowerment, demonstrating to our diverse audiences the value of accepting and embracing change as an inevitable facet of life and as an opportunity to formulate new ways of thinking, living and working.
I believe passionately in these ideals and because they embody the essence of Cooperative Extension work, I proudly proclaim and honor them as my own.
[Written by Jim Langcuster, Editor, Mission Extension]