Perspectives Online

Dan Smith is Extensionís West District director

Dan Smith

Dr. Dan Smith, Extension director in McDowell County, has been named district Extension director for North Carolina’s West District. He replaces Harvey Fouts, who retired March 1.

Smith, who lives in Nebo, received his 2008 doctoral degree in agriculture and extension education from N.C. State University. He earned both his 1983 master’s degree in agronomy and 1979 bachelor’s degree in economic biology (entomology) from Clemson University.

He has served as Extension director in McDowell County since 1994. Prior to that, he was county director in Alexander County (1990 to 1994) and Hyde County (1987 to 1990). He was agricultural Extension agent in Alexander County from 1988 to 1990 and associate agricultural agent in Hyde County from 1984 to 1987. He also served as an assistant county agent with the Clemson University Extension Service from 1979 to 1981.

Among the activities, issues and projects he has focused upon are alternative agriculture, beekeeping, consumer horticulture, farmland preservation, pesticide education, recycling and water quality.

Smith also brings extensive international agricultural experience to the job. He served in 2000 as team leader of a Rotary International Group Study Exchange program in South Korea. With a Hyatt Scholarship Award, he was part of a 1997 study tour of the extension programs in Germany, Poland and the Czech Republic. And he served in 1993 as Extension adviser to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Polish American Extension Project, presenting educational programs under a new democratic government and free market economy.

A member of the state’s Association of County Agricultural Agents and Epsilon Sigma Phi, he is a past winner of the ESP state and county performance awards. He is also a Journeyman Master Beekeeper with the N.C. Beekeepers Association, which named him Extension Worker of the Year in 2003. – Terri Leith