Faculty and students from the Texas A&M College of Agriculture and Life Sciences Department of Soil and Crop Sciences will receive recognition Nov. 9-13 by the Crop Sciences Society of America, or CSSA; the American Society of Agronomy, or ASA; and the Soil Sciences Society of America, or SSSA, during their virtual international annual meeting, “Translating Visionary Science to Practice.”
ASA, CSSA, SSSA Women in Science Mentoring Award
Peyton Smith, Ph.D., an assistant professor of soil carbon dynamics in the Texas A&M Department of Soil and Crop Sciences, will receive the Women in Science Mentoring Award by the ASA, CSSA and SSSA. The award recognizes an individual whose efforts have encouraged females in the sciences.
Smith earned graduate degrees from the University of Wisconsin and Yale University, and an undergraduate degree from the University of Washington. Her research focuses on how interacting physical, chemical and biological processes regulate the persistence of soil organic matter. She also investigates how global change influences the soil microbiome and its role in fundamental biogeochemical processes.
Despite being an early career scientist, as a faculty member she has mentored over 30 students and postdoctoral students, many who have secured successful positions in academia or governmental agencies.
Smith is very engaged in undergraduate research, and acts as a primary mentor for an international Research Experiences for Undergraduates, REU, program on tropical biogeochemistry, according to her award recognition. She also co-founded several mentoring networks for women in soil science, including the Texas A&M Chapter of Women in Ag Science, and a nationwide mentoring program, Women in Soil Ecology.
CSSA Fellow is the highest recognition bestowed by the Crop Science Society of America and is presented for outstanding contributions to agronomy through education, national and international service and research.
Redmon is internationally recognized for work in forage management. He has provided leadership for both the American Society of Agronomy and CSSA, as well as at the regional, state and local levels in educational programming and materials development in both Texas and Oklahoma. He currently serves as associate editor for the Agrosystems, Geosciences and Environment journal.
Redmon has garnered $7.8 million in grants, produced 32 refereed journal articles and 98 Extension publications, as a faculty member helped to train 35 graduate students and has participated in 1,275 educational programs with over 82,000 attendees. He has made presentations to delegations from Afghanistan, Azerbaijan, Brazil, Bulgaria, Hungary, Kazakhstan, Mexico, Poland, Tunisia and Venezuela.
He earned a bachelor’s degree in agronomy from Stephen F. Austin State University and a doctorate in range science from Texas A&M. He spent six years with Oklahoma State University before joining AgriLife Extension in 1999 as a forage specialist at Overton. He moved to College Station in 2004.
An SSSA Fellow award will be presented to Cristine Morgan, Ph.D., an adjunct faculty member in the Department of Soil and Crop Sciences, where she was a tenured professor. This recognition is for her innovative research, translating technology to application, research in global soil security, and elevating soil judging to a global competition while at Texas A&M.
The Fellow is the highest recognition bestowed by the SSSA and is presented for outstanding contributions to agronomy through education, national and international service, and research.
Morgan is now chief scientific officer at the Soil Health Institute in Morrisville, North Carolina, where she develops scientific strategy and implementation for the Institute’s research. She earned her bachelor’s degree from Texas A&M in environmental soil and plant sciences and master’s and doctorate in soil science from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.
ASA Carl Sprengel Agronomic Research Award
Wayne Smith, Ph.D., professor, cotton breeder and associate department head in the Department of Soil and Crop Sciences, was honored with the ASA Carl Sprengel Agronomic Research Award, recognizing major research accomplishments resulting from basic or applied research in agronomy.
Smith has served as a cotton breeder for over 45 years, including more than 30 with Texas A&M AgriLife Research. He has developed or co-developed and released 142 upland cotton germplasm lines and five cultivars, his nomination stated.
Smith joined Texas A&M in 1986 following 12 years as a cotton breeder with the Arkansas Agricultural Experiment Station. He is a native of Alabama and a graduate of Auburn University and the University of Tennessee.
ASA Tengtou Agricultural Science Award
Hongbin Zhang, Ph.D., professor of plant genetics, genomics, systems biology and molecular breeding, will be presented with the Tengtou Agricultural Science Award, which recognizes those who have made significant contributions to Chinese agriculture with an emphasis on plants.
Zhang’s research is focused on genomics and systems biology in crop plants, particularly development of genomic and systems biological knowledge and new or advanced technologies for enhanced crop research and breeding.
Student award winners:
– Noah Winans: Frank D. Keim Graduate Fellowship. Winans, from Tekonsha, Michigan, is working on his master’s in plant breeding. The Frank D. Keim Graduate Fellowship is awarded to an outstanding senior who has been accepted for a graduate program in agronomy or related field.
– Aniruddha Maity: Nelson Yield-Limiting Factors Graduate Scholarship. Maity, from Kolkata, West Bengal, India, is a doctoral student in plant breeding. The Nelson scholarship is designed to encourage students to pursue research and careers in support of the diagnosis of yield-limiting factors in agronomy. He will also be receiving the Outstanding Graduate Student Award with the Association for Agricultural Scientists of Indian Origin during the ASA-CSSA-SSSA meeting.
– Rahul Raman and Mark McDonald: SEED Ambassadors. This is an immersive advocacy leadership program designed to develop training to engage with federal, state and local policy makers and strong relationships with U.S. Congressional members.
– Gustavo Camargo Silva: Bayer Diversity Initiative Scholar/Early Career. Gustavo, from Sao Paulo, Brazil, is a master’s student in agronomy.