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Visit to Washington DC was educational and memorable
Donna Krug clr

By the time you are reading this column I should have recovered from the jet lag on my recent trip to the Nation’s Capitol. We flew to D.C. a few days before the conference started so that my husband John, and I, could catch up with friends. It was great having a tour guide and driver who was familiar with the area.
From the Keynote speakers to the Capnote speaker, the Public Issues Leadership Development conference (PILD) provided the tools to make our organization strong and relevant in our fast paced world. The sessions prepared us well for our visit to Capitol Hill on Wednesday. Visiting with the legislators and their staffs, solidified what I already knew; that the volunteer leaders in our Kansas delegation are as passionate as I am about what Extension has to offer. An added bonus was getting to give a hug to Katie Neideree, a former Barton County 4-H’er, who is the communications director for Senator Jerry Moran. Later in the day we crossed paths with Sarah Neideree, (Katies’ little sister) who was visiting Dr. Marshall’s office with a delegation from KSU.
The conference theme, “Relationships, Relevance, Results” was definitely appropriate. One of the sessions I participated in with the National Program Leaders Panel, opened my eyes to the many wonderful educational resources at my fingertips. I also enjoyed hearing from agents in Ohio who have had great success planning educational tours to build relationships with their funding partners. As Barton and Ellis County Extension programs come together to form a district I can see some benefits in planning something like this in the future.
I knew when I said “yes” to serve as president of my state professional organization I would get to travel to Washington D.C. with our Kansas delegation. Little did I realize that this conference would become a memorable highlight of my Extension career.
The conference ended late Wednesday so our plan was to fly back to Kansas City Thursday afternoon. We caught a shuttle to the airport in a driving rain. When we checked our bag and got through security we found out our flight had been cancelled. So the next 8 hours were spent standing in line; first to secure another flight home, and another to retrieve our checked bag. After another night in a hotel our friends rescued us for a couple more days. It felt great to make it back to Kansas City late Sunday morning. Ironically one of the messages left on our home phone last Thursday was from the airline notifying us of our cancelled flight!

Donna Krug is the Family & Consumer Science Agent with K-State Research and Extension – Barton County. Contact her at 620-793-1910 or