Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension Center
University of California
Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension Center

Kearney News Updates

Kearney participates in UC Walks

Twenty Kearney staff and academics took part in the systemwide UC Walks program May 1. UC Walks promotes wellness and an active lifestyle by encouraging employees to take time out of their day to walk. The event also builds community and campus spirit throughout the UC system. 

At Kearney, UC Walks was coordinated by Emily Melton Casado, financial services manager for the UC ANR Business Operation Center located at Kearney. Casado serves as the the center's Staff Assembly Ambassador. Each ANR location across the state has an ambassador who serves as a liaison with the Staff Assembly Council and coordinates activities at local sites.

The Kearney walking team poses for a picture before setting out for a lunchtime walk on the center grounds.
UC Walks takes place across the state at UC ANR facilities, the 10 UC campuses, laboratories, medical centers and other sites.
The Kearney team jumped halfway through the walk to see if we will register on the nearby earthquake monitoring equipment.
After walking about a mile and a half, the team cooled off in the shade.
Everyone at Kearney - lab assistants, groundskeepers, agricultural staff, staff research associates, Cooperative Extension specialists, visiting scientists, etc. - are welcome to take part in the annual UC Walks event. Look for an announcement next year, receive a free t-shirt and join UC Walks.
Posted on Thursday, May 2, 2019 at 9:37 AM

Dahlberg, Bali, and Putnam share forage expertise in Pakistan.


Two of Kearney's researchers, Jeff Dahlberg and Khaled Bali joined Dan Putnam of UC Davis in a trip to Pakistan to talk with Pakistani researchers, academics, and farmers about forage production. Pakistan has reached out to their expertise to help understand improved forage practices that will help Pakistan meet its dairy and meat needs in the future. The three UC researchers gave presentations in Faisalabad and Multan at the Agricultural Universities. Dr. Putnam gave presentations on alfalfa, Dr. Dahlberg on sorghum as a forage, and Dr. Bali on irrigation and evapotranspiration. Their Pakistani hosts were very gracious and appreciative of their efforts. While there, they also participated in a fabulous tradition at the Ag Universities, planting of a tree in each of their names. The Kearney and Davis researchers look forward to strengthening these new relationships between Pakistani scientists and those of UC and ANR.

Dr.Khaled Bali (green hat), Dr.Dan Putnam (center back), and Dr.Jeff Dahlberg (tan hat and shirt) meeting with Pakistani improved forage stakeholders.


Posted on Friday, April 5, 2019 at 1:44 PM

Diana Nix Marks 40th Year at Kearney!

Saturday Night Fever won album of the year, The Dukes of Hazzard roared onto our television screens, and a very young Diana Nickel answered a newspaper ad for a job at Kearney. Hired as a Secretary One with Shorthand, Diana would see plenty of changes over the next 40 years, but one constant would be working at Kearney. When asked how it was to start at Kearney, Diana replied, “I made the choice to take this new job, but honestly, I am not good with change. It was tough.”

As an increasingly important center of research, Kearney continued to develop assets and so did Diana. She was reclassified to Word Processing Specialist and then Administrative Assistant. Following the trail of technological advances, Diana said the office personnel took some classes to learn the new word processing and computer skills, but much of her skill set came from just figuring things out herself. Knowing there was a need to be met, that her assistance mattered and made a difference motivated her to keep growing.

New skills at Kearney were only exceeded by new skills at home as Diana married, raised children, and then learned to cope as a young widow. Through it all she says, Kearney has been a constant, like a family. In fact, Diana credits the people at Kearney as the reason she has stayed 40 years.

Also a key factor in Diana's longevity at Kearney is her drive to help. “I don't want anyone to leave here without getting something.” This usually means being an excellent resource of information about research, planning, catering, etc., but sometimes it is different. One time a woman came into the reception area and asked Diana to throw out a handful of garbage for her. No problem. Thunk-goosh, into the can. A short time later, Diana heard back from the woman, “I think my teeth were in that. Could you please check?” Sure enough. Diana, very helpfully, gave them back.

There are chapters left to write about Diana's past 40 years, and many more to write about her continuing future here. For now, we will close with these words from Kearney's director at a celebration held for Diana on March 20th, as Jeff Dahlberg thanked Diana Nix for her “…extraordinary service to the UC-ANR KARE community. It is not often that we have the opportunity to thank someone for 40 years of service to our organization, and it was a pleasure to present a Certificate of Appreciation and a pin to Diana in recognition of her years of service.”

Diana with some Kearney friends.

Certificate, 40 year pin, and cake to mark the occasion.

Director Jeff Dahlberg thanks Diana Nix at her celebration.


Posted on Friday, March 22, 2019 at 1:17 PM

FARMS Leadership students take workshops on fruit, soil, and sorghum at UC Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension Center.

In December the Farming, Agriculture, and Resource Management for Sustainability (FARMS) program brought about 60 high school students from valley schools to enjoy a day of workshops and ag-related learning at UC Kearney. Part of the Center for Land Based Learning, the FARMS Leadership program students participated in team building activities with their peers, and three workshops provided by Kearney: the science behind fruit ripeness/quality, building healthy soils for healthy crops, and sorghum and whole grains.


The students circle in a team-building exercise.

Two FARMS students check the sugar content of oranges.
Students learn that healthy soil produces healthy crops.
Director Jeff Dahlberg teaches about sorghum and healthy whole grains.

Posted on Tuesday, December 11, 2018 at 2:22 PM

DPR license and certificate holders: Renew early! Get those last-minute hours with help from UC IPM.

Learn about opportunities to receive continuing education hours. October is upon us and before you know it, we'll be wrapped up in the busy holiday season. If you hold a license or certificate from the California Department of Pesticide Regulation (DPR) and have a last name that begins with letters A through L, this is your year to renew. DPR encourages license and certificate holders to avoid the end-of-the-year rush and submit renewal applications by November 1.

Early renewal has its advantages. DPR can take up to 60 days to process a renewal application. Submitting applications now not only avoids late fees and gives you time to fix any problems that DPR may find, such as not having enough continuing education (CE) hours to renew, but also ensures that you will have your new certificate or license by the first of the year.

Without a renewed license in hand, you are not allowed to use or supervise the use of pesticides after January 1, 2019 until you receive it. You also run the risk of having to retest if there are problems with the renewal application and not enough time to fix them.

If you need a few last-minute credits, take a look at the online courses the UC Statewide IPM Program (UC IPM) offers:

Laws and Regulations


UC Agriculture and Natural Resources (UC ANR) is also offering monthly webinars on specific pest issues for CEUs. More information can be found on the UC Ag Experts Talk website. 

Check out the list of DPR-approved continuing education courses. For more information about license renewal, visit DPR's licensing and certification webpage.

Learn about pest management and other training opportunities from UC IPM.



CEU Renewals picture
CEU Renewals picture

Posted on Tuesday, October 23, 2018 at 8:48 AM

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