NEAFCS-MN Officer Candidate Bios

We have two wonderful candidates for NEAFCS  President-Elect and Secretary. Anita Harris, based out of St. Cloud, is running for President-Elect and Mary Schroeder, based out of Marshall, is running for Secretary. Please take a moment to read their bios which are posted below. Elections will be held at the annual meeting in Duluth. If possible, please plan to attend.


President-Elect: Hello!  My name is Anita (Harris) Hering and I have been a member of NEAFCS for one year.  I am running for NEAFCS- MN President-Elect.

I was hired in May of 2005 by the University of Minnesota Extension as a Regional Extension Educator for the Center of Youth Development.  In March of 2015 I joined the Center for Family Development- Family Resiliency as Extension Educator Military Families working as the Social Media Specialist in a cooperative agreement with eXtension, the Department of Defense, USDA, and the Military Families Learning Network.  My expertise is in the area of youth, families, volunteer and partnership development, curriculum development, program quality, social media, and working with military service providers, Service Members, their families and Veterans.

I attended the College of St. Benedict and St. John’s University for my undergraduate degree in Elementary Education with a concentration in Special Education.  In 1990 I received my MA in Non-Public School Administration/Educational Leadership from the University of St. Thomas, St. Paul.

Upon coming to the University of MN Extension, I had 23 years of professional experience in Pre-Grade 12 education, 10 years as a classroom teacher and as a Principal for 13. I worked with school renovations, building projects, school mergers, and involved with strategic planning, grant writing and financial management (5 yearly budgets), fundraising and public relations, before and after school programs, curriculum development and implementation, just to name a few.

My husband and I live on five acres of wooded land in St. Joseph, where every day we host the “Hering Party” with deer, wild turkeys, coyote, other small animals and birds.  Since 2007 I have been involved with the Beyond the Yellow Ribbon in the St. Cloud area and as a volunteer Chairperson for the largest Regional BTYR (9 cities) in MN, the Central MN Warrior to Citizen.

As President-Elect I will use my leadership and management skills to serve in a leadership capacity and work hard to promote excellence and scholarship, assist in providing innovative professional growth and development opportunities, and serve as a resource for education, information, networking and partnerships.


Secretary:Mary Schroeder has worked as an Extension educator since 1999. Prior to Extension, Mary worked as a registered dietitian in medical settings. As a clinical dietitian, Mary observed that people’s eating habits are influenced by factors such as stress, physical activity, time, and food access. Recently Mary’s work has focused on nutrition and well-being of children and youth, especially youth who live in low-income areas. She has worked with team members to develop and deliver trainings to school foodservice directors and child care providers with the goal of ensuring these environments prepare and serve high quality, nutritious foods. Mary earned a Masters degree in Public Health, Community Health Education at the University of Wisconsin — LaCrosse, WI and her Bachelors degree in Food and Nutrition from North Dakota State University.


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