North Santa Rosa

Endowment Honors UF/IFAS Extension Dean, Supports 4-H

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — When the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences receives a donation in someone’s honor, it’s often in memory of someone who has passed away. But that’s not how Larry and Debbie Swindle like to do things.“If you’re going to give a gift in someone’s name, why not do it while they are alive so they can enjoy the moment?” said Debbie Swindle.

So this past year, when the couple decided to make a gift to the UF/IFAS Extension 4-H program, they created an endowment honoring one of the program’s longtime champions, Nick Place, dean of UF/IFAS Extension.

Place had no idea the Swindles were planning the endowment until it was announced at the annual UF/IFAS 4-H Gator Soiree. “It really surprised him. The look on his face said, Who, me?” Debbie Swindle said.

“What Larry and Debbie Swindle did was one of the most humbling things that has happened to me,” Place said. “Because of their generosity, many youth will be benefited for many years to come.”

The endowment will go to the Florida 4-H program. The fund will support 4-H youths’ attendance at statewide 4-H events, such as 4-H camps, 4-H Legislature and 4-H University.

The Swindles, who have grandchildren in 4-H, have always been avid supporters of the program and of UF/IFAS. They know how important it is that 4-H members be able to attend state events, so the endowment will provide more of these opportunities.

The gift also honors Place’s roots in youth development. Long before he became the UF/IFAS Extension dean, Place was a multi-county Extension agent in Pennsylvania, where he led 4-H programs with a focus on dairy and livestock. Throughout his career, Place has been an advocate for agricultural education among youth.

To learn how you can support the Florida 4-H Youth Development Program, please contact Mendy Allen, UF/IFAS Advancement coordinator for Florida 4-H, at (352) 294-0886 or 


The mission of the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences is to develop knowledge relevant to agricultural, human and natural resources and to make that knowledge available to sustain and enhance the quality of human life. With more than a dozen research facilities, 67 county Extension offices, and award-winning students and faculty in the UF College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, UF/IFAS works to bring science-based solutions to the state’s agricultural and natural resources industries, and all Florida residents. Visit the UF/IFAS web site at and follow us on social media at @UF_IFAS.

Posted by on Jan 16 2019. Filed under Announcements, Happenings, Local, News, Schools. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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