Beaulieu honored by community development association

July 14, 2016

Beaulieu honored by community development association

Lionel “Bo” Beaulieu, director of the Purdue University Center for Regional Development and assistant director of Purdue Extension’s community development program, received the National Distinguished Career Award from the National Association of Community Development Professionals.

The award, presented during the organization’s annual awards banquet in Burlington, Vermont,  in June, recognizes exemplary members who have served more than seven years in Extension community development programming. It is based largely on the honoree’s professional accomplishments, size and depth of programs created and implemented, demonstrated program improvements and program innovations. It also encompasses the member’s Extension Committee work, professional improvement, personal interests and activities related to community development, and related awards received.

Beaulieu since 1977 has developed, tested, implemented and evaluated programs that align with the needs of communities.

Before coming to Purdue, as the director of the Southern Rural Development Center at Mississippi State University, Beaulieu worked to make the SRDC a nationally recognized center of excellence. SRDC took a lead in securing federal funding and coordinating the National e-Commerce Extension Initiative. He was on the core team that started the Rural Community College Initiative and led team development of “Entrepreneurs and Their Communities” eXtension Community of Practice.

A chief architect of the Stronger Economies Together program funded by U.S. Department of Agriculture Rural Development, Beaulieu continues to serve as a member of the National SET Coordinating Team. He helped develop and implement the ReadyCommunity program, a Federal Emergency Management Agency-funded effort that helps local communities plan for natural or technological disasters. He also secured funds and implemented the Turning the Tide on Poverty initiative in 12 states across the Southern region.

Since becoming director of the Purdue Center for Regional Development in 2013 and later also assuming the role of assistant director and head of the Extension Community Development Program, Beaulieu has elevated and expanded collaborative work with variety of agencies. In 2015 he secured funding to start a signature program, the Hometown Collaboration Initiative. Ten communities/counties in Indiana with populations of less than 25,000 people are now part of HCI, with 11 more to join in 2016-17.

Beaulieu’s collaboration with three Big Ten universities has resulted in the federally funded Defense Manufacturing Assistance Program, an initiative to help companies and communities develop action plans to recover from reductions in defense-related investments.

Beaulieu has garnered more than $4 million in extramural and intramural funding in the three years he has been at Purdue.

Beaulieu has served as president of the Rural Sociological Society and president of the Community Development Society. In 2014 he received the Distinguished Rural Sociologist Award from the Rural Sociological Society, became an inductee of the George Washington Carver Hall of Fame for Public Engagement at Tuskegee University, and received the Honor Award for External Partnership by the U.S. secretary of agriculture.

As part of the SET National Coordinating Team, Beaulieu was honored in 2015 with the NIFA/USDA National Partnership Award for Multi-State Programs. He has co-edited three books, published 48 refereed journal articles or book chapters, and made hundreds of presentations at national and regional professional meetings.

---PHOTO CAPTION: Lionel “Bo” Beaulieu with Kelly Nix (left) of West Virginia University and president of the National Association of Community Development Professionals, and Stacey McCullough of University of Arkansas and past president of the group.


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