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EDUCATOR SPOTLIGHT: Mickey Simpson
Mickey Simpson serves as Family and Consume Educator in McClain County. She is working on her 30th year with the Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service, having previously served in Harper and Custer Counties. Mickey took a break from her Extension career to marry and stay home with her two daughters when they were young. In 1991, she returned to Extension as 4-H Educator in McClain County, a position she held for 15 years. In 2006, she transferred to the Family and Consumer Science position in McClain County.
McClain County is considered to be the “Heart of Oklahoma”. Purcell, the county seat is home to the Chickasaw Nation Regional Offices and Nutrition Center. The county is also known for its many horse ranches. Mickey makes her home in Blanchard, where her husband owned a veterinary clinic for 29 years. He retired and sold his practice in 2012, and now stays busy raising Brangus cattle with his parents and sisters. The veterinary clinic afforded Mickey many opportunities to enrich the 4-H program in McClain County, including working with small animal projects such as dogs and rabbits, and large animal projects, particularly cattle, sheep and horses.
Mickey received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Home Economics Education from Cameron University in Lawton and she completed her Master of Science Degree at Oklahoma State University in Consumer Resource Management. Upon graduating with her bachelor’s degree, Mickey began teaching Family and Consumer Science at Davidson Junior and Senior High School in Davidson, Oklahoma. As the “Home Ec” teacher, Mickey, along with the “Ag” teacher were designated as the school 4-H Leaders. While at Davidson, she attended the Southern Region 4-H Volunteer Conference at Rock Eagle, Georgia. The Oklahoma delegation traveled to Georgia on a chartered bus and Mickey became acquainted with two Family and Consumer Educators from the Northwest District. After the trip, they encouraged her to apply for the open FCS position in Harper County, and thus began her Extension career.
In her Extension career, Mickey has been involved in quite a variety of programs. As a 4-H Educator, she taught numerous FCS related programs, including Character Education, Talking with TJ, Ag in the Classroom, sewing and food science workshops, and many non-FCS related projects, such as Dog Obedience classes and Environmental Stewardship education, that promoted life skills and leadership. As a Family and Consumer Science Educator, she has been particularly active in leading Financial Management and Family Life programs. Examples are Reality Check, a financial management simulation activity for teens, Co-Parenting for Resilience and Home Buyer Education. She has led or assisted with many other educational activities, like Farm to You, food preservation workshops, cooking schools and youth sewing camps.
Mickey enjoys working with McClain County’s Oklahoma Home and Community Education groups. Some of the projects she has guided them in completing are bi-annual Enrich Your Life Senior Adult Conferences, recycling endeavors, quilt shows, sewing workshops, military aid projects and the current state project Raising Young Readers.
Whether working with adults or youth, Mickey has thoroughly enjoyed her career in Extension, where there is rarely a boring moment.