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Welcome to ACE

Registration is now open for the June 2016 ACE Conference in Memphis.

It’s all about impact, and measurement guru Katie Paine will kick off the conference with insights into measurement standards for traditional and digital media. Katie will also teach two break-out sessions related to measurement to take conference attendees even deeper into the topic.

Terri Lee Freeman, president of the National Civil Rights Museum, will speak, and an optional tour of the museum will be available to attendees. Terri's goals for the museum, which she began leading in 2014, include establishing it as the new "public square" for dialogue about civil and human rights. Do you love agriculture but find communicating its importance in the 21st century to be challenging, with audiences embracing divergent and often opposing views? Janice Person, a fourth generation Memphian, is an active blogger and Monsanto’s online engagement director. Janice will share her experiences as a communicator for an international company and offer insights about reaching new audiences while navigating the current media landscape.

Conference Registration

Registration Contact Information:
Conference Registration Office
Kansas State University Global Campus
1615 Anderson Avenue, Manhattan, Kansas 66502-4098
registration@k-state.edu (please indicate ACE Conference in the subject line)
785-532-5569 or 800-432-8222 (8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday)

The votes are in, and the ACE Board of Directors thanks you all for voting in this year's election! 

Please join us in welcoming Elizabeth Gregory North, who will become our next vice president, Dennis Thomas as our next marketing director, Victor Villegas as the professional development director-elect, and Lauri Baker as the research director-elect. They assume their new duties at the end of the ACE business meeting at this year's conference in Memphis.

Our thanks to the Nominating Committee for their efforts. The committee was chaired by Past President Joanne Littlefield, and included past presidents Virginia Morgan White, Robert Casler, and Terry Meisenbach.

Elizabeth Gregory North
Vice President

Elizabeth Gregory North is currently head of Agricultural Communications for the Mississippi State University Extension Service. She provides strategic communications leadership for Extension and the Division of Agriculture, Forestry, and Veterinary Medicine and manages a unit of more than 30 professionals working in media relations, educational publishing, graphic design and photography, television and radio production, and printing, distribution, and inventory management.

Previously, she held various positions related to communications leadership, marketing and branding, social media, and educational publishing with Texas A&M AgriLife, including serving as Extension Communications Leader and Brand Manager for the creation of the Texas A&M AgriLife brand. She led organizational marketing and identity programs for Extension and the Experiment Station, planned and led marketing campaigns for Extension educational programs, and provided marketing and communications training to personnel, volunteers, and 4-H’ers.

At the national level, she has also served as communications consultant to the National 4-H Strategic Planning Process, as Co-Leader for the National 4-H Discovery Team for Communications and Marketing, and as a member of the National 4-H Brand Review Team. She has also provided planning and production leadership to a 3-year national marketing and image enhancement campaign, “Living Well,” for the National Extension Association for Family and Consumer Sciences. Most recently, she served on the ECOP Communications and Marketing Task Force and led the implementation phase of the National Extension Branding Initiative. For eXtension, she has served on the Communications and Marketing Advisory Committee and as Communications Leader for the Cooperatives Community of Practice. She continues as Co-Leader for the Extension Brand Value Community of Practice.

Her work has been recognized with national awards from ACE; the National Extension Association for Family and Consumer Sciences; and the National Association of Extension 4-H Agents, as well as agency awards. She is a member of ACE, the American Marketing Association, and the Public Relations Society of America.

In ACE, Elizabeth has received the ACE Pioneer Award; the Outstanding Professional Skill Award in Marketing and Media Relations (twice), in Diversity, and in Publishing; the Award of Excellence in Marketing; various ACE C&A awards; and the ACE Professional Award.

She has served as Marketing SIG Chair (twice), Southern Region Director, Program Chair for the “Marketing: Finding the Right Fit” workshop, a member of the Membership Committee, and on various committees and task forces. She currently serves as the ACE Marketing Director.

Dennis Thomas
Marketing Director

Production Coordinator for the Land Grant Program at Kentucky State University and facilitator of a $3.5 million Satellite Production Unit and video/audio recording studio. Employed at KSU for over 15 years.

Before arriving at Kentucky State, employed at WKYT-TV, “a CBS affiliate” in Lexington, KY for 15 years as Studio Production Technician/ A.M. Production Coordinator. While employed at WKYT, received multiple “Employee of the Month” awards.

Member of ACE for 15 years.

I am a member of “NAB” National Association of Broadcasters, “EVP” Extension Videographers Producers, Black Achievers Society and the NAACP.

My interest in the Diversity SIG is to present a view from the small universities prospective, the 1892’s.

Hopefully, through one of the professional development projects performed earlier “Why you should come to the ACE Conference,” I was able to provide ideas to get more 1890 universities involved with the ACE organization. The workshop presentations and luncheon speaker’s messages offered at the annual conference are too important for any higher learning institution not to be a part of.


Victor Villegas
Professional Development Director-Elect

Victor Villegas is the Technology & Media Support Coordinator for Oregon State University Extension Service. A leader in social media, technology, creativity and unconventional marketing, Victor is passionate about teaching others how to use technology to improve their lives and work. He has a degree in Graphics Technology and experience working in commercial printing, digital pre-press, digital media production, education and even radio. More recently, Victor has gained some internet fame by creatively combining many of his skills to become "DroneSinger", the world's #1 creator of parody songs and music videos about drones. He uses this online persona and social media to bring attention to drone issues and culture, while encouraging safe and responsible flying.

As an ACE member, Victor has been actively involved since 2014. He is currently the IT Learning Community Chair and has contributed through committee participation and presenting multiple webinars and conference sessions. He also manages the ACE IT Learning Community Facebook page and is a frequent contributor to the ACE Social Media Learning Community Facebook page. Victor's ACE activities and accomplishments include: Computer/Tech Support for ACE Conference 2014; ACE 2014 session co-presenter; ACE IT SIG Vice Chair Elect 2014-2015; ACE 2015 Pioneer Award; ACE 2015 presentations (2); ACE IT Learning Community Chair 2015-2016; ACE Conference 2016 planning committee member; Presenter/Co-Presenter of multiple ACE webinars

Lauri Baker
Research Director-Elect

Lauri M. Baker is an associate professor of agricultural communication and journalism at Kansas State University where she is the co-creator of the Center for Rural Enterprise Engagement. The Center is focused on new-media research and the application of this research to improve the livelihood of rural agricultural communities. 

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