Extension Master Gardener National Committee

Gardens & Landscapes, Extension Master Gardener February 20, 2019 Print Friendly and PDF

The Extension Master Gardener National Committee (EMGNC) provides a national focus and contact point for the nationwide Extension Master Gardener (EMG) program and the various state efforts in Extension Consumer Horticulture.

The EMGNC facilitates inclusion of county and state gardening information in eXtension; provides a channel for contacting, funding, and training EMGs to be front line detectors/information providers on national, critical issues related to home yards and landscapes; facilitates national collaboration to avoid redundancy in development of educational materials, and expedites collaboration with federal agencies, funders and professional organizations for input and funding for national issues and priorities.

The  EMGNC was formed in July 2006 and is comprised of EMG state coordinators elected to represent five geographical Cooperative Extension regions (Northeast, North Central, Northwest, Southwest, South Central and Southeast) and the directors of nationwide projects.

Objectives of the EMGNC

The EMGNC will:

  • Facilitate national cooperation among states for the sharing of program management strategies for EMG volunteers.
  • Facilitate national communications and collaborations to avoid redundancy in development of electronic materials and training.
  • Promote national communication and distribution of research-based horticultural information between Extension Master Gardeners and the public via tools provided by eXtension such as the EMG national blog, Ask an Expert and other social media outlets.
  • Facilitate regional or national web-based courses to enhance EMG volunteer continued education and retention.
  • Promote sharing of EMG state project implementation and successes through vehicles such as the International Search for Excellence awards.
  • Provide a network to mobilize EMGs as front line information providers on critical or emergency national horticultural issues.
  • Enhance national recognition and support for the Extension Master Gardener program by utilizing a national logo and encouraging communications through a national website.
  • Collaborate with eXtension and will encourage applications for eXtension grants.
  • Coordinate the annual national conference for Consumer Horticulture Specialists and Extension Master Gardener State Coordinators.


Elected Regional Representatives

Elected Region Map


EMG state coordinators are elected by their peers to represent six geographical regions. Elected representatives serve two-year terms and elections are staggered.


Northeast Region: Rhode Island, Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Jersey, Connecticut, New York, Massachusetts, Maryland, New Hampshire, Vermont, Maine (Term ends 2018)

Vanessa Venturini 
Cooperative Extension Master Gardener Coordinators
URI Outreach Center
3 East Alumni Avenue
Kingston, RI 02881-0804

Phone: 401/874-7142
Email: vanessa@uri.edu

North Central Region: North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Kansas, Missouri, Iowa, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Illinois, Ohio, Indiana (Term ends 2019)

Susan DeBlieck
Iowa State University
Room: 024 Horticulture
Telephone:  515-294-6764
Email:  deblieck@iastate.edu

Northwest Region: Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, and Alaska (Term ends 2019)

Chris Hilgert
University of Wyoming Extension
UW Campus: Ag C 4005
Phone: 307-766-6870
Email: chilgert@uwyo.edu

Southwest Region: California, Nevada, Utah, Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, Hawaii (Term ends 2018).

Missy Gable
Director, UC Master Gardener Program
2801 Second Street
Davis, CA 95618-7779
Phone: 530/750-1266

South Central Region: Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Kentucky, Tennessee (Term ends 2019)

Dr. Natalie Bumgarner
2431 Joe Johnson Drive
252 Ellington Plant Science Building

Knoxville, TN 37996
Phone: 865/974-7324
Email: nbumgarn@utk.edu

Southeast Region: Alabama, Georgia, Florida, South Carolina, North Carolina, and Virginia (Term ends 2018)

John Freeborn, Assistant Master Gardener Coordinator
Virginia Tech, Department of Horticulture
407 Saunders (0327)
Phone: 540/231-2714
Email: freeborn@vt.edu

At-Large Members

An unspecified number of at-large representatives who are providing leadership to various aspects of the EMG program or who direct other national projects related to EMG programs are voting members of the EMGNC.  If the EMGNC determines that another At-Large position/s should be established, it may do so by a simple majority vote.  These positions are filled by appointment from the Executive Board.   Current at-large positions include

Continuing Education
Nicole Pinson, University of Florida

John Orick, Purdue

Coordinator Resources
Sheri Dorn, University of Georgia

Impact and Evaluation
Mike Maddox University of Wisconsin

IMG Conference Representative
Nancy Knauss, Penn State Extension

EMG National Coordinator Conference Representative
Natalie Bumgarner, University of Tennessee 

Diversity, Equity and Inclusion
Dalicia Davis, University of Minnesota 

National Extension Volunteer Conference Representative, Treasurer
Pam Bennett, Ohio State University

National Extension Master Gardener Committee By-laws

PDF iconExtension Master Gardener Coordinators Bylaws Adopted July 2016.pdf

National Extension Master Gardener Committee Factsheet

PDF iconFINAL National Extension MGP Factsheet 02132018.pdf



Liaisons to the Board

A USDA/NIFA National Program Leader with responsibilities for EMG programs will be a nonvoting member of the Board and Committee. Additionally, non-voting liaisons from other Federal Agencies will be invited to meet with the Committee as deemed appropriate by the Committee. The International Master Gardener Committee might also be invited to appoint a liaison to serve on the National Committee to facilitate communications between the two committees. A representative from among the state Extension Directors will also be invited as a nonvoting member of the Board and Committee. Current liaisons include:

Thomas (Tom) Bewick
Physical Address:
Waterfront Centre
800 9th St., SW,
Washington, DC 20024

Mailing Address:
United States Department of Agriculture
National Institute of Food and Agriculture
1400 Independence Avenue SW, Stop 2201
Washington, DC 20250-220

Telephone: (202) 401 - 3356
FAX: (202) 401 - 4888
Email: tbewick@nifa.usda.gov


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This work is supported by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, New Technologies for Ag Extension project.