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Norma Samuel

Associate District Extension Director, Central District, UF/IFAS Extension

Dr. Norma Samuel is the Associate District Extension Director, for Central District with the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF-IFAS) Extension and a Florida-Friendly Landscaping™ and Urban Horticulture Agent, based in Sumter County.

Dr. Samuel received her bachelor’s (1997) and master’s (1999) degree in Plant Protection and Pest Management from the University of Georgia. She also holds a PhD in Agricultural Education and Communication with an emphasis on International Extension and a minor in Nonprofit Organizations from the University of Florida (2014).  Before migrating to the U.S., she worked with the Ministry of Agriculture in Antigua and Barbuda on a research station and with the Plant Protection and Quarantine Unit.  She has almost 20 years of experience as an Extension Agent in the areas of residential and commercial horticulture, Master Gardener Coordinator, and 4-H youth development.  She has expertise in the areas of pest management, food systems (backyard and community gardens), volunteer development; risk management; and human and organizational capacity building of extension systems. Dr. Samuel currently serves as PI on a SARE funded project (2021 – 2023) evaluating Hibiscus sabdariffa (sorrel) varieties for production in Florida. Dr. Samuel has led and or participated in several international Extension projects in the Caribbean and Ghana. She is a member of several professional organizations and served in leadership roles with the Caribbean Agricultural Extension Providers’ Network (Chair, 2016 – 2021) and the Global Forum for Rural Advisory Services, an international nonprofit based in Switzerland (President of the Board, 2021 – 2022).