Juan Landivar, Ph.D., director of the Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension centers at Weslaco and Corpus Christi, was awarded the Norman Borlaug Lifetime Achievement Award by the Texas Plant Protection Association, or TPPA.
The association grants its highest award to members who have made special contributions to the association, the conference and Texas agriculture. The award is named in honor of Dr. Norman Borlaug, an agronomist, humanitarian and Nobel laureate who has been called the “Father of the Green Revolution” and “Agriculture’s Greatest Spokesperson.”
Landivar received the award at the annual Texas Plant Protection Association conference held in Bryan on Dec. 11. This year’s conference focused on artificial intelligence’s impact on Texas agriculture.
“Dr. Landivar is well deserved of this honor as his work with leading technology, such as the use of unmanned aircraft vehicles, UAV’s, in agriculture, has been outstanding,” said Bob Sasser, the association’s executive director.
“He has made presentations on precision agriculture and on his team’s work with new technology several times over the years. He has continued to encourage his team to serve as TPPA leaders, including one as TPPA president and another as one of the TPPA vice-presidents and poster chairman. His support of Texas Agriculture and TPPA is recognized by other agricultural leaders in Texas.”
Landivar has led the work on the mode of action and uses of plant growth regulators, development of remote sensing systems for research and precision management, development of unmanned aerial system-based platforms for high throughput phenotyping.”
“Dr. Borlaug has always been a role model, not only as a professional, although he was an agronomist, but also as a person,” Landivar said. “He was always a humanitarian and always thinking about how to help mankind. He made me feel proud to be an agronomist, and that is the meaning of this award to me. To receive this in honor of one of my heroes made it very special.”
Other award winners from the annual conference include:
- Academic Agency Award – David Kerns, Ph.D., AgriLife Extension specialist in College Station.
- Industry Award – Steve Carlson, field agronomist for Bayer CropScience in Central Texas.
- Consultant Award – Justin Chopelas, crop consultant in the Coastal Bend.
- Ray Smith Leadership Award – Gary Schwarzlose, Sr. technical service representative at Bayer CropScience in Texas.
- James Griffin, Graduate Student Award, Ph.D.
- Cynthia Sias, Graduate Student Award, M.S.
Graduate student poster award winners:
- First place – Zachary Howard, Evolution of Chemical Control Options for Smutgrass in Texas.
- Second place – Sias, Understanding Interspecific Hybridization between grain sorghum and Johnsongrass.
- Third place – Mason House, Comparison of Ground and Unmanned Aerial Sprayer Individual Plant Treatment Methods for Control of Smutgrass.
- First place – Chengsong Hu, Seed Production Estimation of Late-Season Common Waterhemp escapes in Soybean Using Drone Imagery.
- Second place – Jorge Valenzuela-Antelo, Developing a Superior Hard White Winter Wheat “TAM 114” Using Gene Editing.
- Third place – Rohith Vulchi, Stewardship Practices in XtendFlex Cotton and Economic Analysis.