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New faces join NMSU’s Curry County Extension office

Release Date: 11 Aug 2020
New faces join NMSU’s Curry County Extension office

CLOVIS – There is a new team of New Mexico State University Cooperative Extension Service professionals serving Curry County.

Each has a connection to the open space of eastern New Mexico and the Texas Panhandle and is glad to be back.

Mindy Turner, county program director and family, consumer science agent; Mason Grau, agricultural agent; and Halee Prather, 4-H Youth Development Agent, have joined the familiar team members Cindy Boney, office administrative assistant; Zandy Bunch, ICAN nutrition educator; and Diana Wood, county program assistant.

“We are all excited and thrilled to be here and to be a part of Curry County,” said Turner. “During the past few weeks we’ve made contact with various aspects of our agricultural community and county government to hear what programing we can provide.”

There has been some turnover in the county office during the past few years. Leigh Ann Marez, Extension Eastern District Director, is pleased with the new staff.

“What a great staff we have to move forward with…talented, capable and service-oriented!” Marez said. “Having a fully staffed office is the best way to build clientele confidence and office cohesiveness.”

Turner is not a new face to 4-H members and volunteers. She arrives from Las Cruces where she was the Extension 4-H and Youth specialist with the state 4-H office. She has been with NMSU for 17 years.

She earned a Bachelor of Science degree in family and community services from Texas Tech University and a master’s degree in counseling from Tarleton State University in Stephensville, Texas.

Grau brings a wide variety of practical experience to his position. From the ranch-hand and management role he played on his family’s ranch, Grau Ranch in Grady, and the E&M Black Cattle Company in Vega, Texas, to working for Animal Health International out of Hereford, Texas.

He earned a Bachelor’s of Science degree in agribusiness from West Texas A&M University in Canyon, Texas.

This is Prather’s first career position since graduating from NMSU in May with a bachelor’s degree in agriculture and Extension education.

The graduate of Texico High School brings personal experience from participating in 4-H and FFA as a youth and being NMSU Collegiate FFA president, as well as professional experience from student teaching at Des Moines High School and an internship at Lighthouse Academy in Las Cruces.

Many people know Bunch, the county’s ICAN nutrition educator, from the gardening projects she has developed at various daycares and schools in the area Clovis area.

Wood has been helping to keep youth engaged in 4-H and educational activities with projects livestreamed on Facebook.

Boney is the go-to person at the Extension office. For four years, she has been that welcoming voice to callers seeking information.

In response to state mandates limiting gatherings due to the COVID-19 pandemic, each of the team members are expanding their contacts through social medial.

“We each have ideas for videos focused on topics in our specialties that we can use now through virtual programs,” Turner said. “The videos will be available in the future for people who want to attend a workshop on a topic, but are unable to work it into their busy schedule.”

To learn more about what is going on at the Curry County Extension office, visit

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