Why I Love Franklin County: Katernia Cole-Coffey
FRANKLIN LIVING—Katernia Cole-Coffey followed in the footsteps of her late father, mother, sister, uncles and aunts when she became a member of the 4-H Club. Her beginnings in 4-H propelled her into a career with the Alabama Cooperative Extension System – which ultimately led her to the coordinator’s seat for the Franklin County Extension.
Cole-Coffey is a Lauderdale County native and graduate of Lexington High School; the University of North Alabama (Bachelor of Science in human environmental sciences with a minor in marketing); and the University of Phoenix (master’s degree in management). She is the daughter of the late Wilberforce “Will” Cole and Georgia Leatrice Echols Cole and is married to Willie Henry Coffey, a cast house operator at Constellium.
She has worked in Franklin County since July 2008.
What does your role as coordinator of the Franklin County Extension involve?
The Cooperative Extension System is basically a network of people in every county across the United States that is responsible for spreading research-based science and innovation to families, communities and farmers. When it comes to the people of Franklin County, I work with all agents and specialists, giving the citizens knowledge through research-based information, enabling them to improve their lives and economic well-being.
I am recognized as a community leader who addresses the contemporary challenges, issues and opportunities facing the citizens of Franklin County through university programs and knowledge. As a county Extension coordinator, I build and strengthen relationships with key business, government and education leaders and citizen stakeholders.
What makes your job meaningful?
The Alabama Cooperative Extension helps people in all 67 counties in the great state of Alabama adopt new ways of living, working and creating livelihoods so prosperity and health are increased across Alabama. Even though agriculture is the root of the system, we offer programming in forestry, wildlife and natural resources, human sciences (family and consumer sciences), economic and community development and 4-H and youth development.
What is your favorite place to visit in Franklin County?
I really do not have a favorite place per se, but I have enjoyed visiting the various cities, communities and surrounding areas: Belgreen, East Franklin, Hodges, Red Bay, Russellville, Phil Campbell, Tharptown, Vina and anywhere in between. There is a lot of history, and it is good to share it with others.
What is your favorite local restaurant and menu item?
I like the quality of service, and I like the quality of the product that I receive, from each of these restaurants. I like good food, and I cannot lie!
- Taylor’s Restaurant: Mrs. Dorothy Taylor’s homemade desserts – pecan pie, chocolate pie, coconut cream pie, Italian cream cake, caramel cake, red velvet and carrot cake
- Destination Restaurant: the Wicked Wrap
- 43 Grill: grilled chicken with baked sweet potato
- Fourth Street Grill: the salad bar
- Red Bay Hotel: corn bread salad and hamburger steak
- Pilgrims Place: chicken salad and the barbecue sandwich
- El Patron: Top Shelf Enchiladas
- Rancho Viejo: fajitas
Why do you love Franklin County?
There is a sense of community; people unite together. Everybody knows everybody. I also enjoy all of the outdoor activities, local festivals and events, great opportunities, places of historical significance and local businesses – I love to shop!
- Favorite hobby: Collector of Christmas ornaments, antiques, fine linens and glassware.
- Favorite foods: Chicken and dressing, chicken salad and caramel cake
- Goals: To improve the lives of the people in Franklin County with Extension programming and to always do my best at anything I do
- Church: Northside Church of Christ, Center Star, is the church that I have attended since I was a little girl. I have served as Sunday School teacher and church janitor.
- Something people might not know about me: I do not like surprises, so, no surprise birthday parties for me!