UT Extension Eastern Region Director David Perrin Given Administrative Leadership Award

Picture of David Perrin accepts award
Davi​d Perrin, UT Extension Eastern Region director, is pictured above accepting the Administrative Leadership Award from Epsilon Sigma Phi. Also pictured is Johnny Barnes, past president of the Tennessee Omega chapter of ESP. Image courtesy UTIA. Download image​

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture faculty members have been recognized with six awards for their commitment to Extension and outreach work across Tennessee. The honors are given by Epsilon Sigma Phi (ESP), a national organization that includes thousands of Extension professionals from land-grant universities across the country. Tennessee Extension professionals were recognized in six of 12 categories across the South.

“These awards really highlight the incredible talent and leadership of UT Extension agents, specialists and professors,” says Michele Atkins, Tennessee ESP Omega Chapter president. “We submitted entries in nine categories, and won six of those. That’s an impressive number,” continues Shelly Barnes, awards and recognition chair for the chapter.

David Perrin, director for the Eastern Region of UT Extension, was honored with the Epsilon Sigma Phi Administrative Leadership Award. This award recognizes Extension professionals who have shown noteworthy administrative enthusiasm, performance and accomplishment during Extension careers that span 10 years or more. Administrative leadership may be at county, regional, chapter, program, department or national level.

As the Eastern Region director, Perrin is the administrator for 33 counties. He fully supports professional development and membership in professional associations in all counties, and conducted listening sessions in each county as one of his first endeavors as director. Previously Perrin served as ANR/4-H Program leader from 2001 to 2008. As program leader, he coordinated an annual multi-state nursery tour for agents and producers and worked with a computer programmer to develop an electronic tool for 4-H scoring as well. 

Perrin says, "It is an honor and a privilege to serve as the Eastern Region director and be recognized by ESP for this leadership award. My goal as director is and has always been to help families imrove their quality of life." 

The full list of UT Extension award winners are listed below:

Continued Excellence Award – Janie Burney, professor and nutrition specialist

Administrative Leadership Award – David Perrin, Eastern Region director

Visionary Leadership Award – John Toman, Extension evaluation and staff development specialist

International Service Award – Patsy Watkins, UT Extension Williamson County

Diversity Multicultural Team Award – Kane Reeves, UT-TSU Extension Madison County, and Sharon Tubbs, UT Extension Madison County

Distinguished Team Award – Allisen Penn, Central Region program leader, team leader​

Full descriptions of the award categories and a comprehensive list of winners nationwide is available at the Epsilon Sigma Phi website.

When asked about the success of UT Extension, UTIA Chancellor Tim Cross credits dedicated people and partnerships. “UT Extension has more than a 100-year history of advancing Tennessee, thanks to exceptional county financial support, dedicated employees and volunteers, and a strong partnership with our 1890 institution - Tennessee State University,” he says. “Long-term successful state programs tend to result in professionals who are heavily engaged in associations like Epsilon Sigma Phi.”

Through its mission of research, teaching and extension, the University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture touches lives and provides Real. Life. Solutions. ag.tennessee.edu.



Beth Hall Davis, UTIA Marketing and Communications, 865-974-7141, bethdavis@tennessee.edu​