Lincoln University, County councils, County secretaries

The mission of University of Missouri Extension is to improve Missourians' lives by addressing their highest priorities through the application of research-based knowledge and resources. As an integral part of the land-grant mission, University of Missouri Extension is a joint venture of several important partnerships.

Three of those partnerships are highlighted in this online orientation:

  • Lincoln University Cooperative Extension
  • County extension councils
  • County secretaries

Lincoln University

University of Missouri Extension's educational programs are guided by an integrated, coordinated response by the campuses and the field system to address important issues of wide public concern, including those of underserved audiences. As MU Extension partners with Lincoln University Cooperative Extension, the number of programs offered and Missouri citizens impacted, is far more reaching than if either university worked separately from the other. By combining resources from both of the universities, we can provide much more robust programming and services throughout the state.

Lincoln University website:

County extension councils

County extension councils play a vital role in meeting the educational needs of the state of Missouri. County councils are statutorily created to work with the University in carrying out the local extension program (Sections 262:550 to 262:620, Revised Statutes of Missouri). County councils are composed of elected members representing the districts or townships in the county. 

The county council has delegated authority over the county office operations.  They provide advice and counsel to MU Extension specialists regarding programming needs in the community. They also provide input regarding county employees (i.e., county secretary) who work in MU Extension offices. 

For more information on county councils, click on the link below:

Contact information:
Mark Stewart, Regional Operations and Council Development
211 Whitten Hall
Columbia, MO 65211

County secretaries

The county secretary is employed by the county council. Salary and paid leaves (vacation, sick days and holidays) are funded by the county. Amounts and options in salary and paid leaves are determined by the level of appropriations obtained by the county.

Benefits and retirement contributions are also funded by the county. MU Extension helps administer these programs.  Tamra Robbins, Administrative Associate, MU Extension Human Resources at 573-882-7755 can help you with any questions regarding benefits and retirement plans for county secretaries.

As a county employee, the county secretary is hired and supervised by the county council.  The county council works closely with the MU Extension CPD (county program director) in this supervisory role.

Duties of the county secretary are many and include:

  • Supporting educational programming and local MU Extension office operations.
  • Supporting the partnership between the university and county extension council.
  • Maintaining open and professional communication with the CPD, council, MU Extension faculty and customers.    
  • Working with the CPD to maintain best procedures for handling office operations (customer services, telephone communication, scheduling, work load, retaining records, etc.).