LSU lauds AgCenter researchers, programs

2015 LSU AgCenter award winners

Front row: Maud Walsh, James Hendrix, Georgianna Tuuri, Kayanush Aryana, Jimmy Meaux, Donna Morgan, Dustin Harrell, Carol LeDoux, Brian Marx and Eric Webster. Back row: Jeff Beasley, Jong Ham, Steve Linscombe, Fatemah Malekian, Ernest Girouard, Allen Hogan, Jim Oard, Gerry Romero, Barton Joffrion, Don Groth and Michael Blazier.

The Louisiana State University AgCenter recently presented their annual faculty and staff awards to several deserving individuals and groups serving the rice industry.

Jimmy Meaux, Calcasieu Parish county agent, received the Floyd S. Edmiston Award for his exceptional work with the Louisiana Cooperative Extension Service. Meaux spent 20 years working with youth during the early part of his career but is now primarily responsible for agricultural and natural resources within his parish, including work with row crops and animal enterprises such as crawfish and cattle.

Dustin Harrell, LSU AgCenter rice specialist stationed at the H. Rouse Caffey Rice Research Station in Crowley, received the G&H Seed Company Inc. Research Award. Harrell helped identify a nutrient deficiency problem in Louisiana rice fields that was causing significant yield loss and came up with recommendations to rectify the problem. He also has done extensive work in ratoon stubble management leading to higher yields on ratoon or for second-growth rice crops.

The recipient of the Doyle Chambers Research Award was Eric Webster, a weed scientist with the AgCenter. He is responsible for developing rice weed management strategies, which in Louisiana are unique because of the abundance of fields that are used for both rice and crawfish production. Webster also is responsible for testing new rice varieties and their susceptibility to herbicide damage.

The Denver T. and Ferne Loupe Extension Team Award was presented to the Louisiana Master Farmer Program group.

Team members are Ernest Girouard, Master Farmer coordinator; James Hendrix, northeast region Master Farmer agent; Allen Hogan, southern region Master Farmer agent; and Donna Morgan, central region Master Farmer agent.

The Louisiana Master Farmer program was established by an act of the Louisiana legislature, and more than 200 farmers have completed the program and are certified Master Farmers.

The Rice Sheath Blight Resistance Team was named the Tipton Team Research Team Award winners.

Members of the team are plant pathologists Don Groth and Jong Ham, rice breeder Steve Linscombe and agronomist Jim Oard.

The group is responsible for developing new rice varieties that are resistant the sheath blight, the most prevalent disease found in Southern U.S. rice fields.

The team also makes recommendations on rice production methods that can reduce the incidences of sheath blight.