2010 Janet Ayres

Janet Ayres

Janet was born and raised on a dairy farm near Cutler. After graduating from Carroll High School in 1969, she went on to receive her B.A. from Purdue in 1973 and a Masters in Planning from Cornell University in 1975. After working a few years as a private consultant in land use planning, she joined the Agricultural Economics staff at Purdue and received her Ph.D. in sociology in 1983. Janet was one of the first women faculty members in the department and moved through the ranks to become a full professor. She served six years as Assistant Director of Purdue Extension and Community Development Program Leader during which time she developed the Purdue Land Use Team.

Janet’s work is focused on her passion – rural communities. She has worked in over 200 rural communities in Indiana to help rural people develop their leadership skills to deal with change and conflict. She has developed over a dozen state-wide programs such as the Indiana Ag Leadership Institute, the Indiana Natural Resources Leadership Institute, Take Charge, Barn Again! In Indiana, a leadership program for SWCD Supervisors, and several national-level programs with Extension and USDA Rural Development.

Janet has traveled to over 50 countries and has conducted leadership programs in Poland, Hungary and Russia. Janet was one of the first faculty to introduce the academic importance of leadership. She teaches an undergraduate leadership course and co- developed the College of Agriculture’s Leadership Development Certificate Program for undergraduate students.

Janet and her husband, Dr. Lynn Corson, chose to make Carroll County their home in 1986 and restored a historic farm at the edge of Delphi. Janet led the Carroll County at the Crossroads efforts in 2004 and 2009, co-created Carroll County Focus on the Future, Leadership Carroll County and the Heritage Tourism group. She served on the Community Foundation board and is a member of the Land Use and Zoning Committee, Wabash & Erie Canal Association, County Historical Society, Delphi Preservation Society, County Chamber of Commerce, and County Ag Association. Janet volunteers her time to facilitate many community organizational retreats.

March 11, 2010

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