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21 LSU AgCenter faculty, staff win 2014 annual awards

News Release Distributed 12/15/14

BATON ROUGE, La. – Twenty-one members of the LSU AgCenter faculty and staff were recognized for their outstanding effort and career contributions at an awards ceremony held Dec. 15 at the LSU AgCenter Botanic Gardens at Burden.

Raj Singh, director of the Plant Diagnostics Center, received the Floyd S. Edmiston Award for outstanding work with the Louisiana Cooperative Extension Service. Singh, assistant professor in the Department of Plant Pathology and Crop Physiology, has been instrumental in helping the state’s horticulture industry combat diseases, including the citrus canker and citrus greening disease.

Miles Brashier, extension agent in Pointe Coupee Parish, received the Extension Excellence Award for long-time achievement. Brashier is involved in commercial agriculture, home and lawn horticulture and 4-H activities. He has been an agent in the parish for more than 30 years and was recently appointed coordinator of the Louisiana Master Gardener program.

Arthur Villordon, professor at the Sweet Potato Research Station near Winnsboro, received the G&H Seed Company Inc. Research Award. Villordon played a vital role in the development of two new successful sweet potato varieties, Orleans and Evangeline. Based on the findings of Villordon’s research, sweet potato producers have improved their cultivation practices.

Ray Schneider, plant pathologist, received the Doyle Chambers Research Award for long-time achievement with the Louisiana Agricultural Experiment Station. He is one of the world’s leading authorities on diseases of soybeans and was the first person to detect the presence of Asian soybean rust disease in North America in 2004.

The Denver T. and Ferne Loupe Extension Team Award was presented to faculty specializing in forestry education. Team members are Brian Chandler, area agent in East Feliciana Parish; Steve Hotard, area agent in Ouachita Parish, who has recently retired; Ricky Kilpatrick, area agent in Caddo Parish; Keith Hawkins, area agent in Beauregard Parish; Robbie Hutchins, area agent in Rapides Parish; Michael Blazier, associate professor and forestry researcher at the Hill Farm Research Station in Homer; and Shaun Tanger, assistant professor in Agricultural Economics and Agribusiness.

The team is responsible for conducting educational programs for forest land owners statewide and providing educational outreach to youth. Programs directed by the team have led to better timber production and enhanced wildlife opportunities.

The Tipton Team Research Award went to the Clearfield Technology Preservation and Education Team, which is made up of weed scientists Eric Webster and Daniel Stephenson, state soybean specialist Ronnie Levy and Acadia Parish county agent Barrett Courville. The members are working on ways to prevent outcrossing of weedy plants with Clearfield rice lines. The group is responsible for examining the use of crop rotations and herbicide combinations to prevent such outcrossing. Through their research, cultivation practices have been developed to minimize problems and allow Clearfield technology to remain viable.

Charles Hebert, 4-H agent in Lafayette Parish, received the Rosalie Biven 4-H Youth Development Faculty Award. He is involved with the establishment of school gardens in parish schools to help facilitate educational enrichment and service-learning principles.

Two staff members were recognized for their contributions. Receiving the Ganelle Bullock Staff Outstanding Service Award was Gaye Richard, an administrative coordinator for the Central Region and the Dean Lee Research and Extension Center in Alexandria. The Outstanding Service Award for Associates went to Bill Leonards, a research associate at the Rice Research Station in Crowley. He oversees the field work and facilities maintenance for the 1,040-acre research station.

Claudia Husseneder, entomology professor, was the winner of the 2014 Article of the Year for Louisiana Agriculture magazine with her report on the greenhead horse fly as an indicator of marsh health after the 2010 oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. In addition, service awards were presented to two faculty members who finished three years of service on the magazine’s board. They are Matt Fannin, agricultural economics associate professor, and Donald Thompson, animal sciences professor.

Craig Gautreaux

Last Updated: 12/15/2014 4:47:49 PM

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