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    WRDC Fellows

    Introduction and Eligibility

    • The WRDC Fellows program is intended to recognize individuals who have demonstrated a strong commitment to the Rural West and who have exhibited excellence in Community Development work.
    • WRDC Fellows will work with and be a resource to the Western Rural Development Center.
    • To be considered as a WRDC Fellow, an individual must be engaged in and currently be making significant contributions to Rural and/or Community Development and must have been employed in these activities for at least four years.


    • The WRDC Board of Directors will annually issue a call for nominations.
    • Nominations may be made to the WRDC Board of Directors by a member of the WRDC Board of Directors, an Agricultural Experiment Station or Cooperative Extension State Director, a Tribal College Extension Director, or by the USDA Rural Development State Director from any of the 13 states of Pacific Territories comprising the western region. 
    • The nomination packet must include evidence of Community Development excellence and commitment.
    • Fellows are approved by the WRDC Board of Directors.
    • No more than two Fellows will be approved from any state or territory during any calendar year, and there will be no more than four Fellows from any state or territory at any given time.
    • Fellows will serve three-year terms. At the conclusion of this three-year term, individuals are eligible to be nominated for additional terms.

    Responsibilities of WRDC Fellows

    • WRDC Fellows will support and assist in the promotion of Western Rural Development Center projects and activities.
    • Fellows will provide leadership in identifying issues and concerns of the Rural West and consider means of addressing these issues and concerns. 
    • Fellows will primarily be connected by electronic means including email, Web, and teleconferencing. 
    • Fellows are eligible to serve as Visiting Fellows at the Western Rural Development Center.

    Benefits of Serving as a WRDC Fellow

    • Recognition for excellence. This recognition will assist in tenure and promotion and help to make the individual more marketable.
    • An opportunity to interact with and learn from other Fellows.
    • Increased opportunities to understand and address the major problems and concerns of the Rural West.
    • An opportunity for your employer to showcase individuals and programs that are making an impact by contributing to the WRDC Fellows Program.