Steve Wagoner has served as the Purdue University County Extension Director in Marion County since September 2013. He leads a Marion County team of forty educators, program staff and support staff working together to carry out the Land Grant mission in four program areas — Agriculture and Natural Resources, Community Development, Health and Human Sciences, and 4-H Youth Development. His team members collaborate with partners, stakeholders, volunteers and university specialists to design and deliver practical, research-based education transforming lives and livelihoods for Marion County individuals and communities. Under his leadership, his team has adopted a holistic transdisciplinary approach to community-based health education.
Prior to coming to Indiana, Wagoner spent thirty years as a 4-H Youth Development Educator specializing in urban 4-H youth development programming, youth and adult leadership development, community capacity building and building partnerships to address positive youth development and community issues. Twenty-five years were with University of Illinois Extension, and five years were with University of Wisconsin Extension in Madison. His most recent position in Illinois was as a Metro Youth Development Educator serving Madison, Monroe and St. Clair Counties in the St. Louis Metropolitan Area.
Wagoner currently serves on the National Urban Extension Leaders (NUEL) Steering Committee comprised of thirteen Extension professionals from eleven states who are advancing the strategic importance and long term value of urban Extension work. He recently served as Extension Team Co-chair on Purdue University’s College of Agriculture Strategic Planning Task Force and formerly served on the Board of Trustees for the National Association of Extension 4-H Agents (NAE4-HA). His leadership development expertise has enabled him to teach at three universities in China and has taken him to Costa Rica through the National Extension Leadership Development (NELD) Program.
Wagoner holds a Master's Degree in Extension Education from University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and his Bachelor's Degree is from Southern Illinois University in Carbondale. He lives in the Historic Old Northside Neighborhood of Indianapolis.