Alumni Awards


Robert Bacon

Bacon earned his bachelor's and master's degrees from the U of A, then earned his doctoral degree in agronomy, specializing in crop breeding, at the Perdue University. With his Ph.D. in hand, Bacon came home to Arkansas. Bacon joined the Arkansas Agricultural Experiment Station as a wheat breeder in 1984. But really, he counts his start with the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture as an hourly worker while still an undergraduate student at the University of Arkansas. Bacon retired Jan. 8 after 37 years, the last 15 years as head of the Department of Crop, Soil and Environmental Sciences for the Division of Agriculture and the Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food and Life Sciences at the U of A.

Lance Schmidt

Schmidt earned his master's degree from the U of A through the Crop, Soil, and Environmental Sciences department. In 2013, Schmidt joined Farm Service, INC as an Agronomy Specialist. He spend 6 years there before moving on to ADAMS US as a Regional Development Leader. After spending a year there, Schmidt moved on to Gowan Company as a Technical Service Representative. 



Frank Carey 

Carey is the senior regulatory expert manager for Valent USA in Olive Branch, Mississippi. Rutledge is northern region director for AgHeritage Farm Credit Services in Newport. He earned his Ph.D. in 1994 and his master's in 1990, both from the U of A, in agronomy. Carey manages the labelling and regulatory process for key Valent brands, including plant growth regulators, biological insecticides and rice herbicides. He works with product development managers and marketing managers to form the asset management team for each brand. Those teams direct all registrations, labelling and product life-cycle management for the brand. He also works with external commodity, sales and regulatory partners to obtain new labels and sales opportunities for his brands.

Jeff Rutledge 

Rutledge farms corn, rice and soybeans, and serves on boards for Arkansas Ag Council, Arkansas Rice Council, Arkansas Rice Research and Promotion, USA Rice Federation, USA Rice Council, Jackson County Farm Bureau, Newport School, Newport Levee and the Arkansas Waterways Commission. He earned his master's degree from the U of A in agronomy in 1999. He also served with the U.S. Grains Council, Riceland In-Depth, Arkansas and American Farm Bureau Young Farmer and Rancher committees and the Newport Chamber of Commerce, and his family has been named Jackson County Farm Family of the Year.



Walter Mayhew 

Walter Mayhew, the global germplasm deployment lead for Bayer Crop Science, has been named Outstanding Alumnus for 2019-20 by U of A's Department of Crop, Soil and Environmental Sciences in the Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food and Life Sciences. He earned his master's degree in 1988 and doctorate in 1991, both in agronomy, from the U of A. After graduation, Mayhew spent just over a year working at the Rice Research and Extension Center with the USDA and five years with the Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service. While with extension, he worked in wheat, soybeans and rice, and credits his love of technology transfer to this experience. Mayhew has been with Monsanto/Bayer for more than 22 years and served in various roles, including technology development, marketing and product management, and as general manager for Kruger Seeds in Iowa. He has worked with cross-functional teams responsible for all aspects of the seed business from manufacturing, shipping, customer service, sales and technical support. Mayhew has continued to grow and develop, as well as mentor others, and be available for students exploring agriculture sciences. 



Scott  Senseman

Scott Senseman, professor and head of the Department of Plant Sciences at the University of Tennessee, has been named recipient of the 2019 Outstanding Alumnus Award by the U of A’s Department of Crop, Soil and Environmental Sciences. Senseman leads his UT department in areas of teaching, research and extension. Before becoming department head in 2013, he was a weed scientist and professor at Texas A&M University from 1994 to 2013, where he focused on pesticide fate and transport, and novel research to reduce off-site movement of pesticides. In 2013, he was recognized for his teaching by winning the Outstanding Educator Award from the Southern Weed Science Society of America. Senseman has authored or co-authored 107 refereed journal articles, and has edited a book, multiple research reports and press articles. Senseman earned his master’s degree (1990) and doctorate (1994) in agronomy from the University of Arkansas and the Dale Bumpers College of Agricultural, Food and Life Sciences. He earned his bachelor’s degree in agricultural business from Wilmington College of Ohio in 1986.



Jeff Edwards

Jeff Edwards is Professor and Head for the Department of Plant and Soil Sciences at Oklahoma State University. Dr. Edwards provides leadership for a team of faculty, staff, and students who are working to address agricultural challenges through innovation, research, education, and extension. Prior to accepting the role of department head, Jeff served eleven years as the small grains extension specialist and Warth Endowed Professor, where he focused on increasing the productivity, profitability, and end-use quality of the Oklahoma small grains industry through improved management practices. In 2013, Dr. Edwards’ extension work was recognized with the National Excellence in Extension Award from the APLU and USDA NIFA. Dr. Edwards has authored or co-authored 49 refereed journal articles, 92 extension fact sheets and management guides, one book chapter, and multiple research reports and popular press articles. Dr. Edwards earned his BS in agriculture from Western Kentucky University (95), his MS in weed science (2001) and PhD in crop physiology (2004) from the University of Arkansas, and was a member of LEAD 21 Class VII. Jeff and wife Natalie live in Stillwater, Oklahoma with daughters Allyson and Samantha where he enjoys distance running, gravel biking, and occasional trips across the state line to call the Hogs in Fayetteville.

Darrin Malone

Darrin Malone is a Field Development Technical Consultant with DuPont Crop Protection where he supports 20 Pioneer Agronomists and 48 Pioneer Territory Managers across 12 states in the Southeast and Mid-South USA. With more than 26 years of experience with Dupont Crop Protection it is safe to say that Darrin has done a little bit of everything and in 2016 was recognized with the Dupont Pioneer Southern Region Hitchpin Award for his outstanding leadership and teamwork across the Dupont Pioneer teams. Service and giving back to the University of Arkansas are two defining characteristics of Darrin. He was instrumental in the creation of the Delta Classic Scholarship Golf Tournament and has served as the Dale Bumpers College Alumni President. Darrin earned his BS in agriculture from the University of Arkansas in Agronomy with an emphasis in soil science (88), and his MS in weed science (90). While an undergrad, Darrin served as the Agronomy Club President and was recognized as the department’s Outstanding Senior. Darrin and his wife Kelly live in Paragould, Arkansas.  Their twins, daughter Shea and son Jas, are sophomores in high school. During his free time, Darrin enjoys Civil War history and being outdoors especially fishing.



Dick Oliver

Dr. Dick Oliver, an Arkansas native (Stuttgart), earned his B.S. and M.S. degrees from the University of Arkansas and then went on to receive his Ph.D. from Purdue University. He began his career in 1972 at the University of Arkansas as the first Research Associate funded by the Soybean Promotions Board. He got involved in teaching and quickly became an important member of the weed science faculty. Over the next 38 years, his work focused on weed biology/ecology and weed management programs in soybean, corn and wheat in Arkansas and throughout the mid-South. He was promoted through the ranks at the University eventually being named University Professor in 1994 and Elms Farming Richard S. Barnett Jr. Chair for Weed Science. Among some of the greatest contributions Dr. Oliver made was the training of graduate students as part of a research program, and teaching undergraduate and graduate courses. His excellence was evidenced by the large number of student advisees (41 M.S. and 24 Ph.D.), their speaking awards, and their society and academic awards. At the Arkansas Agricultural Pesticide Association (AAPA) or Arkansas Crop Protection Association’s (ACPA) annual technical meeting, his students placed first ten times, second five times, and third six times in 17 years. In addition, three of his M.S. and five of his Ph.D. students were voted Most Outstanding Crop, Soil, and Environmental Science Department Graduate Student. Every summer for 31 years, Dr. Oliver coached the Weed Team for the annual Southern Weed Contest in an after-work-hours course “Weed Practicum”. The team placed first 25 times with two consecutive runs of 9 and 10 years in a row. The team never finished lower than third. His service to professional societies was another area of significant contribution. They included President of WSSA (2000), SWSS (1989), AAPA (1983), and chair and vice chair of Bumpers College Faculty Council (2006-2008). His many awards include Outstanding Teacher by WSSA, Fellow in WSSA, Faculty Distinguished Achievement Award for Teaching and Research by the Arkansas Alumni Association, Spitze Land Grant Award, and the USDA National Teaching Award.




Stan D. Wullschleger

Stan Wullschleger joined the Environmental Sciences Division at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in 1990 as a Distinguished Holleander Post-doctoral Fellow. His educational training is in forest biology (BS and MS, Colorado State University) and crop physiology (PhD, University of Arkansas). He has spent more than 25 years pursuing globally-important and scientifically interesting questions in a creative and team-oriented environment. Stan studies the sustainable use of herbaceous and woody bioenergy crops as a renewable source of transportation fuel; participates in molecular investigations of model- and non-model organisms; and measures the many physiological mechanisms by which plants and ecosystems respond to global environmental change. He currently serves as Director for the Next-Generation Ecosystem Experiments (NGEE Arctic) project, an interdisciplinary team of more than 140 scientists who are working to address how permafrost thaw in a warming Arctic will affect important ecosystem-climate feedbacks. The project targets integrated, model-inspired studies in geophysics, hydrology, biogeochemistry, vegetation dynamics, and multi-scale numerical modeling. The goal of the NGEE Arctic project is to accelerate the incorporation of new knowledge derived from field and laboratory studies into climate models.

 Stan lives in Knoxville, TN with his wife of 37 years, Denise. Stan and Denise have two children and three grandchildren. He enjoys running – the longer the better – and teaches an after-school science program to inner city children across Knoxville. Stan has many memories of his field and laboratory research while pursuing his PhD in the CSES Department. Having worked for the USDA ARS as a support scientist for several years before coming to the University of Arkansas, Stan was ready for the rigors of graduate school. And Dr. Oosterhuis was just the right advisor, enthusiastically providing both direction and encouragement as together they conducted study after study in a creative scientific and academic environment. Faculty like Drs. Oosterhuis, West, Beyrouty, and Bacon made life in Fayetteville enjoyable not only for Stan, but for his wife and two young children. Stan looks back on those years as the time when he learned the personal and professional satisfaction that comes with asking the next question.



Clifford S. Snyder

Dr. Clifford S. Snyder (Cliff) grew up on a livestock farm in Greenbrier, AR where he attended and graduated high school and was an active member of FFA. Cliff started his undergraduate career at the University of Arkansas on a scholarship in the Department of Bio and Ag Engineering, but later saw the light and during his sophomore year switched his major to soil science in the Agronomy Department. During his undergraduate program, Cliff had the opportunity to work in the labs of Dr. John Gilmour, Dr. E. Moye Rutledge and Dr. Lyell Thompson and was also a member of the department’s Soil Judging Team. Upon completion of his B.S. degree, Dr. Snyder continued his education here at the University of Arkansas by pursuing a M.S. under the direction of Dr. Lyell Thompson and also served as a teaching assistant for Intro Soils lab under the direction of Dr. John Gilmour and Dr. Duane Wolf. Dr. Snyder went on to pursue a Ph.D. at North Carolina State University in soil science and forestry. Following his graduation from NC State, Dr. Snyder returned to Arkansas and served as the University of Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service’s State Soils Specialist from 1984-1995. Before assuming his current duties for IPNI, Dr. Snyder was Southeast Director and previously Midsouth Director with the Potash & Phosphate Institute (PPI), from 1995 through 2006. PPI ceased to exist at the end of 2006, and IPNI was launched at the beginning of 2007. As Southeast Region Director, he had responsibility for agronomic research and education programs for PPI in 11 southeastern U.S. states.

 Currently, Dr. Snyder is the Nitrogen Program Director for the International Plant Nutrition Institute (IPNI), and is based in Conway, Arkansas. He was named to this position in January of 2007, when IPNI was officially established. His responsibilities include coordinating efforts of the Institute dealing with environmental issues related to nitrogen fertilizer use in agriculture, in North America and internationally. Dr. Snyder was appointed to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Science Advisory Board (SAB) Hypoxia Advisory Panel in August 2006 and was involved in producing a 2008 report titled “Hypoxia in the Northern Gulf of Mexico.” In March 2008, he was appointed to the U.S. EPA Farm, Ranch and Rural Communities Advisory Committee. With extensive leadership experience in professional societies, Dr. Snyder was elected Fellow in the Soil Science Society of America (SSSA) in 2009, and the American Society of Agronomy (ASA) in 2002. In 2012, he received the Soil Science Industry and Professional Leadership award from the Soil Science Society of America. He was the 2000 Chair of the Soil Science Society of America (SSSA) Division S-8 (Nutrient Management and Soil and Plant Analysis) and 2006 Chair of ASA Division A-9 (Professional Practitioners). Most recently, Cliff was also named as a Fellow by the Fluid Fertilizer Foundation (2015).



David Jordan

The Department of Crop, Soil, and Environmental Sciences is proud to announce Dr. David Jordan as our 2014 Outstanding Alumnus. Dr. Jordan is a native of North Carolina. He received his BS and MS degrees from North Carolina State University. He came to the University of Arkansas in 1988, where he was a PhD candidate with Dr. Bob Frans. He received his PhD in Weed Science in 1993. After receiving his PhD, he was employed by the Louisiana State University Ag Center from 1993-1996 where he conducted weed science research in rice and soybean. Since 1996, David has been in the Department of Crop Science at North Carolina State University in the role of Extension Specialist with responsibilities associated with peanut-based cropping systems. In this role he conducts applied research in weed management, integrated pest management, and agronomy and coordinates educational activities associated with peanut for CES agents in the state. David is the instructor or co-instructor of five courses in his department. He has been active in international projects funded through USAID in West Africa (Ghana and Liberia), Southern Africa (Malawi), and Haiti related to peanut production, pest management, and capacity building. David lives in Raleigh and is active in his local church and in projects related to disaster relief and recovery programs and agricultural development.

When Dr. Jordan was informed of this recognition, he spoke of how instrumental his time at the University of Arkansas was in shaping his career and providing a solid foundation for success. Those days continue to be among his best experiences in life and he was very appreciative of the friendships that were made during that time. He recalls fondly his experiences in the gray truck, going up and down the Pig Trail with fellow graduate students, his joy of playing on Dr. Wayne Sabbe’s softball team with other students and faculty, and his thankfulness to families that opened their doors to him while he was a student here.

We are proud to have such an outstanding alumnus as David Jordan.



Larry West

(MS’78) as our CSES Outstanding Alumnus. Dr. West is the current National Soil Survey Leader of the USDA-Natural Resources Conservation Service in Lincoln, NE.

Larry is a native of Arkansas, born in Blytheville and reared on the family cotton/cattle farm near Arkadelphia. He graduated from Sparkman High School in Sparkman, AR, then attended Southern State College in Magnolia, AR, for two years. While at Southern State he met his future wife, Marsha, and they were married in 1972. He received both his BS and MS in Soil Science from the University of Arkansas in 1973 and 1978, respectively. Dr. E. Moye Rutledge (MS’62) was his MS advisor at the U of A. He completed the PhD in 1986 at Texas A&M under the guidance of Dr. Larry Wilding.

After earning his MS in 1973 Dr. West worked as a Soil Scientist for the USDA-Soil Conservation Service in Gatesville, TX. In 1980 he became a Research Associate at Texas A&M while working on his PhD. After completing the PhD, Larry took a position as a Soil Scientist and Adjunct Assistant Professor with the USDA-ARS and the Agronomy Department at Purdue University in West Lafayette, IN. In 1988 he became an Assistant Professor in the Department of Crop & Soil Sciences at the University of Georgia in Athens where he remained until 2008 progressing from Assistant Professor to Professor. In 2008 he moved to Lincoln to begin his present position as National Leader of Soil Survey.

Dr. West’s research program focused on horizon property influences on soil hydraulic properties, soil influences on ecosystem characteristics, and soil suitability for onsite wastewater management systems. His research was among the first to describe the mechanisms of crust formation in sandy soils in the Southeast, the effect of subsoil horizons on subsurface water redistribution, and variability in hydraulic conductivity of morphologically similar horizons in clayey Piedmont soils. In cooperation with ecologists, Dr. West developed a soil-based ecological classification system that is currently used to evaluate suitability of Coastal Plain landscapes for restoration of long leaf pine-wiregrass ecosystems. Dr. West was the first to quantify thickness and hydraulic conductivity of biomats formed at the soil trench interface in onsite systems, and these biomat characteristics have subsequently been used in model simulations to evaluate wastewater infiltration rates in different soils and to establish loading rates for onsite systems in Georgia. He developed a 40-hour short course to enhance DHR Environmentalists’ understanding of soils and hydrology, and more than 500 Environmentalists completed this training. Dr. West provided leadership for development of a one-day training session on onsite system function that was presented to over 1,000 onsite system professionals.

Dr. West has served as Associate Editor of Soil Survey Horizons, Associate Editor of the SSSAJ, editor of the pedology section of the Handbook of Soil Science, a member of several SSSA and IUSS committees, numerous academic committees, and served as UGA Department of Crop and Soil Sciences Undergraduate Teaching Coordinator and Research, Extension, Instruction Coordinator. Dr. West’s publication list is extensive. He has over 85 journal articles, 10 book chapters, 100+ conference abstracts on topics including soil erosion, micromorphology of surface crusts, soil-vegetation relationships, hydropedology and soil influence on onsite wastewater management system performance.


James Barrentine

(BS’63, MS’65) has been chosen as our 2009 Outstanding Alumnus. Dr. Barrentine was born in Alligator, MS, but moved to AR, “...long before Mississippi had an effect on me.” He earned both his BS and MS in our department in 1963 and 1965, respectively, and then completed his PhD at Purdue in 1970.

Jim has devoted his career to the research and development of crop protection solutions for growers and to developing educational opportunities for young people. He served one year as the first Area Agricultural Chemical Specialist for the AR Cooperative Extension Service (CES) in Northeast AR with emphasis on pesticide safety. He joined Elanco Products as a Plant Science Representative in ‘66 where he was responsible for field development of herbicides in the Mid-South and Florida. In this position, he played a key role in developing Surflan® herbicide and three related dinitroaniline products in the US and Canada.
In 1974, he was named Regional Research Manager for the Southeastern US where he established a new field research station, and directed the development of aquatic herbicides, including Sonar®, a selective, systemic herbicide for use in freshwater streams, lakes, and other water-ways. In 1980, he was appointed Director of Plant Science Field Research for Lilly Research Laboratories in the US.

In 1984, this role was expanded to include all field research activity around the world. In 1987, he was appointed Global Director of Plant Science Project Management and Product Registration. With the formation of DowElanco in 1989, he was appointed Director of North America Crop Technical Services, Development, and Registration. In 1993, Dr. Barrentine became a Research Fellow in DowElanco, the highest level research scientist in the industry. During his years in industry, Dr. Barrentine maintained close contacts with U of A agricultural researchers and AR crop producers. In 1998, he stepped away from industry to serve as Professor and Head of our CSES department and Section Leader of the Agronomy Section of the Cooperative Extension Service. One of his top accomplishments was the initiation of the highly successful recruitment and scholarship program for the Department. To increase scholarship availability, he established the Delta Golf Classic, which has become an extremely profitable and popular annual scholarship fundraiser.

Jim has been a member of the Southern Weed Science Society (SWSS) and Weed Science Society of America (WSSA) for over 35 years and has served as a Director, Vice-President, and President. He has served and chaired numerous committees for both societies and was honored with the SWSS Distinguished Service Award in 1995. He was honored as a WSSA Fellow in 1998. He was a member of the Board of Directors and Executive Board of the Foundation of Agronomic Research. He is a member of Council for Agricultural Science and Technology (CAST), American Society of Agronomy (ASA), Crop Science Society of America (CSSA), and the Arkansas Crop Protection Association (ACPA).



Craig Roberts

MS ’82 PhD ’85, professor of plant sciences and extension forage specialist at the University of Missouri, was presented the 2008 Outstanding Alumnus Award at the Crop, Soil, and Environmental Sciences awards banquet.

Roberts said some of his best mentors were agronomy professors from the World War II era’s “greatest generation,” including the late Don Brown and Art Spooner, who was Roberts’ major professor.

After two years in post-doctoral position at the University of Illinois, Roberts joined the Missouri faculty. He is well known for his research in forage quality and has established one of the leading state extension programs in dairy forage management. He is editor-in-chief of all Crop Science Society of America publications.

As banquet speaker, Roberts described the disciplines of agricultural, food and life sciences as “science with a cause,” and encouraged students to pursue careers that have a positive impact.



Ali Sadeghi

(PhD’84) was born in 1948 in Isfahan, Iran, which at the time was a city of less than 100,000 people.

Dr. Sadeghi says, “During the first couple of years of my undergraduate years in Iran, I was studying physics but later I changed my major to Irrigation & Drainage,” a branch of study related to hydrology within the Agricultural Engineering Department. Ali received his BS in 1972 and went on to work as an irrigation expert with Soil & Water Consulting Engineers on groundwater investigations and improvement of irrigation systems in northwest Iran before coming to the United States in 1976 to pursue his graduate studies at the University of Arkansas.

Dr. Sadeghi earned both of his graduate degrees from the University of Arkansas. He received the MS in Soil & Water Conservation from the Agricultural Engineering Department in 1979, under Dr. Richard Ferguson, followed by his PhD in Soil Physics in 1984 with the late Dr. Don Scott as his major advisor.

The Sadeghi family stayed in Kansas until 1988, when Dr. Sadeghi joined the USDA-ARS at Beltsville Agricultural Research Center in Beltsville, Maryland. Ali has now been with ARS at this location for nearly 20 years and is currently a senior scientist in the Hydrology & Remote Sensing Laboratory, where the mission of his laboratory is to conduct national oriented basic and applied research on water resources and remote sensing concerns related to the production of food and fiber and the conservation of natural resources.

Dr. Sadeghi’s research has led to significant contributions to soil and water quality sciences, including the fate of urea/ammonia volatilization, nitrate and phosphorus movement in agricultural ecosystems, and the environmental fate of pesticides and pathogens in soils, surface runoff, and groundwater under different agronomic environments. He has authored or coauthored 82 publications in peer-reviewed scientific journals (65), book chapters, national and international proceedings, and popular publications.

In addition, hehas presented over 70 papers at national and international meetings. His work and involvement in the areas of water quality and modeling research have been recognized both nationally and internationally. Dr. Sadeghi has recently developed a new process-based pathogen fate and transport model that has been incorporated, for the first time, into a much larger watershed model called “SWAT,” Soil & Water Assessment Tool, a well-known and widely used ARS watershed model, designed for water quality and other environmental evaluation scenarios. The model is currently been recommended by US EPA for use in the States Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) water quality assessment.

During his 20-year career with ARS, he was frequently asked by his agency to serve on short-term details with many other states and federal institutions such as the Office of Risk Assessment and Cost Benefit Analysis (ORACBA) of the Department of Agriculture in Washington, DC, the ARS National Programs in Beltsville, Maryland, the US EPA Chesapeake Bay Program Office (CBPO) in Annapolis, MA.



Jim Bidlack

(MS’86), notorious for his animated and enthusiastic teaching style, has been named CSES Outstanding Graduate for 2006.

After graduating from Purdue University in 1984, Dr. Bidlack worked with Dr. Charles A. Stutte in our Department on a project to better understand metabolic events involved with nutrient ion uptake in soybean.

From here Dr. Bidlack ventured on to complete a PhD under the direction of Drs. Dwayne Buxton and Richard Shibles in Plant Physiology with the Agronomy Department at Iowa State University. After graduating in the summer of 1990, he took a teaching job as an Assistant Professor of Biology at UCO. The actual position was 50% teaching, 30% scholarly activities, and 20% service. Assuming that teaching was a pretty important part of the job, Bidlack maintained high teaching evaluations, a handful of teaching recognitions, and received the university’s prestigious “Presidential Partner’s Excellence in Teaching Award.”

Dr. Bidlack joined others in leading UCO in that direction and, with the endorsement of the former Governor and UCO President George Nigh, became an Associate Professor and joined the ranks of tenured faculty in the late 1990s. He was promoted to Full Professor of Biology in 2002.


Surapong Sarkarung

Dr. Surapong Sarkarung retired in July 2002 from the International Rice Research Institute where he was Plant Breeder for the Rainfed Lowland Program in the Philippines. He received his Ph.D. in 1978 at the U of A in Plant Breeding and Genetics under the direction of Dr. Fred Collins. He is praised by friends and colleagues for his scientific and practical contributions, as well as his humanitarian contributions.

Dr. Sarkarung has made major contributions to breeding rice for difficult production environments on three contents. As a post-doctoral fellow in Ibadan, Nigeria, he collected and adapted land races of rice and crossed them into lines with higher yield potential. He then moved to South America where he further improved these materials by again crossing with African materials from Madagascar and locally adapted materials, seeking greater yield potential, disease resistance, and tolerance to highly aluminum-saturated acid soils common throughout the region. After a decade of work in South America, Surapong moved to Asia, taking the improved acid soil-tolerant and disease-resistant lines with him. Some products of his breeding efforts in Asia have been released in Laos and eastern India,

Scientists, farmers, and many others have long admired Surapong’s commitment to national agricultural research in developing countries. For weeks at a time over his career, he worked literally from dawn to dusk evaluating lines, not only in experimentation plots, but also in very remote farmers’ fields.

Dr. Sarkarung now resides in Bangkok, Thailand with his wife, Pratummas. They have one son, Nathaporn Patrick, who was born while they were living here in Fayetteville.



Academic Career: Joyce Hardin

Hardin graduated with a Ph.D. from CSES in 1981. Her career has been a well-balanced combination of research, teaching and service. Hardin has held teaching positions at the University of Oklahoma, the University of Central Oklahoma and Hendrix College. She is currently serving as Dean of Students and Vice President of Student Affairs at Hendrix. Hardin is also involved with the Arkansas Academy of Science and projects such as the Arkansas Flora Project that is producing a new atlas of the flora of Arkansas.

Industry Career: Otis Howe

Howe earned a bachelor's degree in agribusiness and then a master's in weed science in 1985. He began his career as a sales representative in the Agricultural Products Department of E.I. DuPont de Nemours & Company and changed to District Sales manager for Pioneer, A DuPont Company, when those companies combined. Howe has also contributed much to Arkansas agriculture though his board position with the Arkansas Crop Protection Association (ACPA) and has recently completed his tenth year serving as Secretary with the Arkansas State Plant Board.


Michel Ransom

Ransom grew up in Pleasant Plains, Ark. He received a B.S.A. in Agronomy in 1974 and an M.S. in Soil Science in 1976 from the University of Arkansas. He completed the Ph.D. in Soil Genesis, Classification and Mineralogy at Ohio State University in 1984 and since that time has served with the agronomy faculty at Kansas State University where he is Professor and Assistant Head for Teaching. Ransom's work in soil genesis, soil survey and soil micromorphology is well known, not only in Kansas but nationally and internationally. His research program remains up-to-date with procedures he and his colleagues have developed in remote sensing, GIS and digitized soil survey information. He is currently Chair of Division S-5 of the Soil Science Society of America. He has served on numerous soil science, student contest and planning committees at the national level; as associate editor for the Soil Science Society of America Journal; and as reviewer for numerous other publications and proposals.



Jerry N. Cash

Cash was born and grew up in Lonoke, Ark. He earned his B.S. and M.S. degrees in biology from the University of Central Arkansas. His leadership along with his inquisitive, explorative nature yielded an outstanding scientist and teacher. His extensive publication list reveals work with a wide array of vegetables and fruit from squash to apples, with a concentration at times on grapes and potatoes. His disciplinary expertise ranges from basic plant physiology to food safety and applied process development. His interests have extended from production with plant nutrition and pest management to quality of the final consumer product after processing and storage.

Dr. Cash retired from his position as Professor of Food Science and Project Leader for all food Science Extension Specialists at Michigan State University in 2003.


Charles Caviness

Caviness was born and reared on a small farm near Hazen, Ark. He served in the navy during WWII in the South Pacific and then enrolled at Arkansas A&M at Monticello for one year before coming to the University, where he graduated with a B.S. in agriculture in 1949. After graduation, Chuck began his career as a research assistant at the Cotton Branch Station and then served about four years as an agronomist with the Arkansas Agricultural Mission in Panama. He returned to the U of A to complete his M.S. degree in Crops in 1956. He then became an instructor in the newly established agronomy department. He took leave from this faculty to complete a Ph.D. in Plant Breeding and Genetics at the University of Missouri in 1963, and for the next 30 years he conducted soybean research, taught plant breeding and production courses and advised graduate students.

Dr. Caviness has had numerous accomplishments during his long career. He introduced new rice varieties and improved production practices that increased rice yields in Panama, and he developed a synthetic corn variety. His major research accomplishments were in his development of nine high-yielding, disease-and nematode-resistant soybean varieties.



Johnie N. Jenkins

Johnie Jenkins grew up on a small family farm in Phillips County, near Barton, Ark. He still runs that farm today along with all his other professional activities. He graduated with a B.S. degree from CSES in 1956. From here he went on to Purdue for an M.S. degree in 1958 and a Ph.D. in 1960. After a post-doc at University of Illinois, Jenkins began work as a research geneticist with USDA, ARS at Mississippi State. He is currently the Director and Research Leader at the Crop Science Research Laboratory with the USDA, ARS at Mississippi State University, and he is the Research Leader of the Genetics and Precision Agriculture Research Unit, as well as Location Coordinator for the Mississippi State Location of ARS.

Dr. Jenkins is recognized worldwide as an authority on plant host resistance, especially in cotton. He is responsible for genetics and breeding investigations with emphasis on cotton genomics and cotton resistance to Heliothis, boll weevil and root-knot nematode. He designed the protocol for the world's first field test of Bt-transgenic cotton, and his method for pollen containment has become standard procedure in such tests. He has developed and released germplasms with resistance to boll weevil, Heliothis, plant bug and root-knot nematode, as well as those with other genetic traits.



James V. Gramlich

Gramlich grew up on a small farm near Charleston, Ark. He received a B.S. degree in Crop Science and an M.S. in Weed Science from CSES before going on to Auburn for a Ph.D. in Botany and Plant Pathology. Dr. Gramlich was at the forefront in making correct decisions for Eli Lilly and American Cynamid where he spent most of his career. He was with Lilly for 16 years making decisions about research and development of products in the U.S., Europe, the Middle East and Africa. Then, he spent 15 years with American Cyanamid at Princeton, N.J., where he became President of the Agricultural Research Division. The success of these two industry giants rests with leaders who can make the right decision at the right time. Strategic discovery and development is the name of the game, and Gramlich was ever alert to what was good for the company and good for agriculture. His own research led to two new herbicides and four patents, but the focus of his career has been in management and leadership for global organizations with responsibility for discovery and development of new products.

Since his retirement in 1995, he continues to serve in this capacity as current President of Technology Leadership Associates, a consulting firm that assists companies with issues in agricultural and biotechnological research and development.