Texas Tech Board of Regents announce promotions for CASNR faculty members
By: Norman Martin
The Texas Tech University System Board of Regents approved the academic advancement of 10 outstanding College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources faculty members during their latest meeting (Feb. 25).
Among those receiving a promotion in academic rank (effective Sept. 1) are:
Robert Cox, associate professor to professor, Department of Natural Resources Management. The Utah native joined the CASNR faculty in in 2008. His research broadly focuses on community and restoration ecology, distribution and conservation of rare and endemic plant species, and ecology of invasive species. His efforts include large-scale restoration experiments with practical applications. His doctorate in ecology and conservation biology is from the University of California-Riverside.
John Rayfield, associate professor to professor, Department of Agricultural Education & Communications. The Alabama native joined the CASNR faculty in 2016. His research interests focus on the field of experiential learning where he teaches undergraduate and graduate classes on experiential learning practice and theory. He has authored or co-authored 44 refereed journal articles. His doctorate in agricultural education is from Texas Tech. He received the CASNR Student Advising Award (2019).
Glen Ritchie, associate professor to professor, Department of Plant & Soil Science. The Idaho native joined the CASNR faculty in 2011, and currently serves as chair of the academic unit. An expert on the environmental factors affecting cotton yield and quality, Ritchie's research has focused on solving real-world problems, which are both applicable for today and setting the foundation for future technologies and solutions. His doctorate in agronomy is from the University of Georgia.
Jyotsna Sharma, associate professor to professor, Department of Plant & Soil Science. Her program investigates how biotic and abiotic processes interact over spatial, temporal, and taxonomic scales to explain the dynamics of rare plants. Her team's projects include complementary manipulative and non-manipulative studies in epiphytic and terrestrial plant communities worldwide. Recent awards include the CASNR Outstanding Research Award (2018), and the Barnie E. Rushing Distinguished Research Award in STEM (2017).
Dale Woerner, associate professor to professor and Cargill Endowed Professor in Sustainable Meat Sciences, Department of Animal & Food Sciences. His research and teaching focus is on meat quality, processing, cookery, flavor and nutritional value as well as red meat composition, yield and international marketing, innovative carcass cutting strategies, meat shelf life and livestock quality management systems. His doctorate is from Colorado State University. He received CASNR's Distinguished Alumni Award (2018).
Those receiving tenure and promotion (effective Sept. 1) are:
Sanjit Deb, assistant professor to associate professor with tenure, Department of Plant & Soil Science. He joined the CASNR faculty in 2015. His research interests broadly focus on soil and water resources management in water-limited and irrigated agricultural production systems, as well as other ecosystems. Interests include applied soil physics, soil-water-plant-atmosphere relationships, and spatial and temporal variability of soil properties. His doctorate in biological and environmental engineering is from the University of Tokyo.
Courtney Gibson, assistant professor to associate professor with tenure, Department of Agricultural Education & Communications. She joined the CASNR faculty in 2015. Her research focuses on developing and enhancing student creativity, the impact and importance of visual communication and graphic design for agriculture, social media strategy, and risk and crisis communication. Her teaching centers on visual communication and graphic design. Her doctorate in agricultural communications and education is from Texas Tech.
Brendan Kelly, assistant professor to associate professor with tenure, Department of Plant & Soil Science. The Midland native joined the CASNR faculty in 2015. Kelly holds a joint appointment with Texas A&M AgriLife Research. His research utilizes large cotton fiber phenomics data sets generated by modern cotton fiber quality evaluation instruments. His bachelor's degree in mathematics and his doctorate in plant and soil science are from Texas Tech.
In other action, Texas Tech's Board of Regents approved promotion and a continuing appointment in a non-tenure position for Kelly Riccitelli from associate professor of practice to professor of practice in Tech's Department of Animal and Food Sciences. The California native joined the CASNR faculty in 2014. In addition to teaching equestrian-related classes, she serves as head horse judging coach. She is an Equine Assisted Growth and Learning Association Certified Horse Professional. Her doctorate in physiology of reproduction-animal science is from Texas A&M University.
Separately, the regents approved a continuing appointment in a non-tenure position for Russ Plowman, an instructor of horticulture in Tech's Department of Plant and Soil Science. He joined the CASNR faculty in 2013. His teaching responsibilities center on horticulture and floral design. Plowman's research focuses on selection and enhancement of native plant species, horticultural plant trial selections and the development of lavender as a cropping alternative for the Texas High Plains. His master's degree in ornamental horticulture is from Texas Tech.
CONTACT: Cindy Akers, Associate Dean for Academic and Student Programs, College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources, Texas Tech University at (806) 742-2808 or firstname.lastname@example.org
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