Meet the HailKnow Team

Hail Know
The Hail Know Team
Melissa Bartels

Melissa Bartels

Cropping and Water Systems Extension Educator

402-367-7410
melissa.bartels@unl.edu

As a Water and Integrated Cropping Systems Extension Educator, I develop and deliver extension programming that: improves profitability and sustainability; reduces environmental risk; encourages stewardship; enhances resiliency; and expands consumer awareness of forage, grain, fiber, and oil byproducts production systems. I actively participate in developing solution- based resources as a member of the state-wide (WICS) team. I am excited to help local producers implement crop management practices to help reduce the impact related to extreme weather, such as hail using, my experience in plant diseases, genetics, and resistance management.

Al Dutcher

Al Dutcher

Associate State Climatologist

402-472-5206
adutcher1@unl.edu

I am an Agricultural Extension Climatologist with the Nebraska State Climate Office. My career at the University of Nebraska started in 1989 when I worked on soil moisture modeling and leading the Climate Services division of the High Plains Regional Climate Center. I have been actively involved in studying climate-agricultural relationships, including evapotranspiration modeling, climate forecasting, drought monitoring, climate change analysis, mesonet siting and quality control, and thermal tracking of insect development. I monitor  atmospheric patterns and identify trends that can be used to enhance ag productivity and marketing, releasing information through media outlets like CropWatch, Market Journal, and KRVN.

Paul Jasa

Paul Jasa

Agricultural Engineer

402-472-6715
pjasa1@unl.edu

I develop and conduct crop production educational programs to help growers improve profitability, build soil health, and reduce risks to the environment.  Across the years, I’ve worked with planting equipment, tillage system evaluation, soil and water conservation, residue management, crop rotations and, more recently, cover crops and soil health.  Cover crops, seeded after a hail event, can reduce nutrient losses and help keep the soil biologically active with living roots feeding carbon and sunlight energy into the soil system.

Justin McMechan

Justin McMechan

Crop Protection and Cropping Systems Specialist

402-624-8041
justin.mcmechan@unl.edu
@JustinMcMechan on Twitter

My research focuses on crop response to hail damage and the interactions between hail, insects, and plant diseases using a hail machine that replicates real-world scenarios. Research from these studies allows growers to make accurate and informed decisions about the fate and management of their crops.

Ashley Mueller

Ashley Mueller

Disaster Recovery Coordinator

402-727-2775
ashley.mueller@unl.edu
NE Extension Disasters on Facebook

I help Nebraskans prepare for and recover from extreme weather and disasters and lead projects in the areas of agriculture, community development, and youth development. I’m also leading the USDA-funded project to develop the Hail Know website, video series, and infographics.

Nathan Mueller

Nathan Mueller

Cropping Systems, Ag Technologies Educator

402-727-2775
nathan.mueller@unl.edu
croptechcafe.org
@CropTechCafe on Twitter

I feed you agronomic information for your farm in northeast Nebraska that will help you know your crop, know your tech, know your bottom line. I have agricultural experience from across the Midwest including Nebraska, Kansas, South Dakota, and Indiana. My extension work focuses on precision ag, on-farm research, soil fertility, crop rotations, cover crops, and soil health.

Chris Proctor

Chris Proctor

Weed Management  Educator

402-472-5411
caproctor@unl.edu
@UNLWeedSci 

I am a Weed Management Extension Educator, focused on integrated crop management, weed control, and sustainable cropping systems. I help producers manage weeds after hail events.

Daren Redfearn

Daren Redfearn

Extension Forage Crop Residue Specialist

402-472-2662
dredfearn2@unl.edu

I'm on a multidisciplinary team focused on enhancing and developing forage-based beef production systems. I focus on developing, analyzing and implementing integrated crop/forage/livestock systems. My research emphasizes the development of management, production and utilization strategies for annual forages used as cover crops after row crops. My extension programs focus on integrating the use of crop residues, annual forages, cover crops, and perennial grasses into existing beef production systems and implementing economical crop residue harvest and grazing methods. 

Jenny Rees

Jenny Rees

Cropping Systems Educator

402-362-5508
jrees2@unl.edu
JenReesources.com
@JenReesources on Twitter

Using my background in agronomy, crop protection, and plant pathology and 13 years of experience in Extension, I serve Nebraskans. I walk fields with farmers and ag industry reps to assist with crop decisions, including those related to Hail/replant, disease, and problem diagnosis.

Cory Walters

Cory Walters

Grain Economist

402-472-0366
cwalters7@unl.edu
@CoryWaltersUNL on Twitter

My extension and research interests focus on the use of public (crop insurance and Farm Bill) and private (futures markets) risk management tools to manage farm income risk. I also investigate policy-important areas of federal crop insurance, fertilizer decisions, and environmental quality. I can assist with hail related concerns related to insurance and farm finances.

Recognition of Past Contributors

Roger Elmore

Roger Elmore

Cropping Systems Agronomist

Robert Klein

Robert Klein

Western Nebraska Crops Specialist

Tyler Williams

Tyler Williams

Cropping Systems and Climate Resiliency Educator