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Lisa Benavente

State Coordinator, Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP)

Broughton Hall, 3199A


Lisa Benavente, a native of the US territory of Guam, is the state coordinator for the Expanded Food & Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP), a federally funded nutrition education program operated through NC State Extension. She has about 25 years of experience serving limited resource families in both educator and leadership roles. Prior to her role as EFNEP State Coordinator, Lisa served as the Regional Nutrition Extension Associate in the Southeast and North Central Extension Districts in North Carolina. Before moving to North Carolina, Lisa served as the EFNEP Coordinator for seven years while working for the Northern Marianas College Extension Service in the Northern Mariana Islands, a U.S. commonwealth just north of Guam.

As coordinator, Lisa provides leadership for statewide programming for nutrition education reaching limited resource families and youth. She works with national and state teams to promote collaborative relationships that further the mission of EFNEP and extend the program’s outreach and impacts. She ensures compliance with federal program policies and guidelines, coordinates program planning, connects the program to current research, oversees curriculum and staff development, communicates program value and successes, secures program resources, and practices good stewardship of federally allocated program funds.

Programs and Initiatives

  • EFNEP’s Families Eating Smart and Moving More
  • Head Start Eating Smart and Moving More

Contributing Websites

Selected Publications

  • Leak, T. M., Benavente, L., Goodell, L. S., Lassiter, A., Jones, L., & Bowen, S. (2014). EFNEP graduates’ perspectives on social media to supplement nutrition education: Focus group findings from active users. Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior, 46(3), 203–208.
  • Benavente, L. M., Jayaratne, K., & Jones, L. (2009). Challenges, Alternatives, and Educational Strategies in Reaching Limited Income Audiences. The Journal of Extension, 47(6), Article 16.


BS Consumer and Family Sciences University of Guam

MR Extension Education NC State University

Area(s) of Expertise

  • Community Nutrition Education
  • Adult Education
  • Training
  • Leadership