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Heather Kelejian Selected for Agents for Change Leadership Development Program

Posted December 8, 2020 at 6:53 pm


NC Cooperative Extension – New Hanover County Center

December 8th, 2020

Katherine McKee |


Wilmington, N.C. – Through a competitive selection process, New Hanover County Cooperative Extension Agent Heather Kelejian has been chosen to participate in the 2021 Agents for Change Leadership Development Program. Heather was chosen for her commitment to helping her community through her work for N.C. State Extension and her interest in developing her leadership capacity to address complex problems. 


The 2021 Agents for Change cohort will meet online monthly and apply what they learn to a project in their county (or counties) of responsibility. Agents for Change was developed and will be facilitated by Dr. Katherine McKee, Department of Agricultural & Human Sciences, NC State University. Dr. McKee developed the program for early-career Extension Professionals because “Extension professionals in their first several years can often see the big challenges their communities face but haven’t yet developed the leadership to identify the systems at work and motivate the key community members to enact lasting change that will benefit the entire community.” 


Heather has identified equity, including allocation and access to resources and representation in community conversations, environmental and nutritional education, civic engagement, youth leadership, integration, and a need for a real dialogue about complicated public issues as challenges your communities face and that may be the focus of her project. She will use the adaptive leadership and systems thinking she learns in Agents for Change to develop solutions that are specific to your community and that build on existing local programs and expertise. As Heather works through her Agents for Change year, she may call on people and organizations to participate in developing solutions that meet the needs of your community.



N.C. Cooperative Extension is a strategic partnership of NC State Extension, The Cooperative Extension Program at N.C. A&T State University, USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (USDA-NIFA), and local governments statewide. 


Extension professionals in all 100 counties and with the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians connect millions of North Carolinians with research-based information and technology from NC State and N.C. A&T. Educational programs specialize in agriculture, food and nutrition, 4-H youth development, community development, and the environment. 


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