What is OMGA™ and what does it do for you?
The Master Gardener™ Program was established by the OSU Extension Service to help disseminate horticultural information to the public. Volunteers are trained in participating counties and serve under the direction and guidance of County Extension Agents.
Many volunteers in OSU’s Master Gardener Program choose to associate themselves as members of their county Master Gardener Association Chapters. Membership in these chapters brings with it membership in the statewide organization, OMGA™.
While OMGA and its subsidiary Chapters were created principally to support and supplement OSU’s Master Gardener Program, OMGA and the Chapters are separate entities, distinct from the Master Gardener Program itself, OSU. OMGA acts autonomously and is governed by a Board of Directors consisting of a State Representative from each of its chapters. OMGA is a tax-exempt organization 501(3)(c) Incorporated in the State of Oregon.
OMGA unifies and supports Chapter programs and helps promote horticultural education by supporting OSU’s Statewide Master Gardener Program. Because of their nonprofit status, OMGA and the Chapters are able to engage in fund-raising and conduct programs of significant benefit to the MG Program and to the gardening public.
The OMGA provides a variety of benefits both to its chapters and its individual members. Your dues provide the funding for many of these activities.
- Annual Gardener’s Mini-College — Sponsoring events jointly with the OSU Extension Service
- Annual Donation to Send A Friend Scholarship—Helping Chapter to send a member of their county to Gardener’s Mini-College
- Karl Carlson Fund grants — Assisting chapters with special projects
- McNeilan Scholarships — Furthering the education of students in horticulture @ OSU
- The Gardener’s Pen newsletter — Keeping members up-to-date on what’s going on with OMGA
- Leadership Day Forum — Promoting leadership within our members
- Web Guidelines publication — Helping chapters keep consistent with OSU of requirements
- Funding development of educational tools — i.e., an OSU Plant ID website
- OMGA History Book — Providing a concise history of the OMGA, its roots and development
- Introducing Marje Luce Search For Excellence programs for Mini-College
- Extension Educator Grants to Chapters — Educating the public about home horticulture and sustainable practices through special chapter projects
- Creating a Tool Kit for understanding of the OMGA and the Master Gardener Programs
- Continuing Education for the OMGA EC and BD (effective leadership, fiduciary responsibilities, etc.)
- Strategic Plan — Providing tools to chapters to understand OMGA, Continuing Education, Fund Raising, and Strengthening OMGA
- Educating the public about home horticulture and sustainable practices through special chapter projects
- OMGA Website — Providing online connections to news and information from OMGA
FINANCIAL SUPPORT of the OSU MASTER GARDENER PROGRAM and CHAPTER ACTIVITIES
- Payment of State Corporate Fees and Professional Tax Reviews to ensure our nonprofit status for OMGA and Chapters
- Payment of biennial Registration Fees to the State of Oregon Legal Entity Registration
- Publications — Funding the distribution of PNW Handbooks to all chapters
- Support of 2017 International Master Gardener Conference & OSU Foundation
- Jan McNeilan Grant—Enabling County’s to interact with OMGA Board of Directors Meetings