The WVU Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design recently named its outstanding faculty and staff members for the 2009-10 school year.
College-wide nominations were sought in various categories and award recipients were then chosen by the Staff Recognition Committee.
This year’s recipients are:
George Merovich, assistant professor of wildlife and fisheries resources, has an extensive list of accomplishments. In 2009, he voluntarily increased his teaching load and taught or co-taught nine courses. Along with other WFR faculty, Merovich is on track to offer a summer program to incoming freshmen designed to improve field skills. He coordinated the WFR internship program, served as faculty adviser to the WVU Bass Fishing Club, and was heavily involved in student recruitment for the program.
“He is well-rounded in his accomplishments, but at the same time his one of our most innovative faculty members,” wrote Joe McNeel, director of the Division of Forestry and Natural Resources. “I can think of no other individual more deserving of the honor of being the Outstanding Teacher in the Davis College.”
Todd Petty, associate professor of field and stream ecology, was selected as outstanding researcher for the Division of Forestry and Natural Resources as well as the Davis College. He received external funding for three research projects last year worth approximately $2 million. Additionally, he continued work on four ongoing projects and completed five others. He authored or co-authored numerous peer-reviewed articles and 16 presentations at state, regional and national professional meetings.
“His extensive research efforts, publication stream, and service as a research adviser are a credit to his abilities and strengthen the quality and reputation of our Division and the College,” McNeel wrote. “He is very innovative and often thinks “outside the box” relative to new research based opportunities.”
Alan Sexstone, professor of soil microbiology in the Division of Plant and Soil Sciences, participated in a variety of service activities at the College and University levels, as well as in the Morgantown community. He played a part in determining the role of golden algae in killing thousands of fish, freshwater mussels and salamanders in Dunkard Creek, a tributary of the Monongahela River that flows along the border between West Virginia and Pennsylvania. Sexstone served as chair of the Promotion and Tenure Committee, and Graduate Student Applicant Coordinator for the Applied and Environmental Microbiology and Plant Pathology Program. He was also a member of the WVU Faculty Senate Courses and Curriculum Committee and the Classroom Technologies Advisory Board.
Lisa Lewis serves as the administrative secretary for the Agricultural and Resource Economics Program in the Division of Resource Management. She has been employed with the Division for over 20 years.
“As part of her job, she works with faculty, staff, and support staff who come from a wide range of backgrounds, have different needs and requests, with varying deadlines and degrees of complexity,” wrote Gerard D’Souza, professor of agricultural and resource economics. “However, as my colleagues have attested to in their own letters of support, Lisa never turns down a request for assistance, and is always professional, courteous, and responsive in fulfilling every on of the numerous requests.”
Stephan Cremann, farm worker at Reymann Memorial Farm in Wardensville, W.Va., is the onsite technician for the Growsafe Feed Intake and Behavior Monitoring System and serves as the second on site monitor of real time data for all Growsafe related projects.
“During the six years he has been here at Reymann Memorial Farms I could not have asked for a more dependable and caring colleague,” wrote Jerry Yates, farm manager. “Stephan exemplifies the spirit of the award, constantly striving to ensure that everything he does is carried out with great enthusiasm and efficiency.”
Will McClung, farm supervisor at the Animal Sciences farm, oversees the day-to-day operations of the Dairy Research and Teaching Unit. He is responsible for coordinating and accommodating the animal needs of the teaching and research faculty, as well as managing feeding, breeding, health and safety of the livestock.
“The demands of Will’s responsibilities as supervisor of the dairy unit are most challenging,” wrote Paul Lewis, director of the Division of Animal and Nutritional Sciences. ” He has demonstrated the ability to sustain a professional effort in effective management of the dairy unit for over 20 years.”
A dedicated employee for 22 years, Terry Hawkins is a trades worker on the Animal Sciences Farm who is always willing to lend a hand. He was nominated by numerous colleagues who all recognize and value his work.
“His good spirits and helpfulness have been under appreciated for many years,” William Miller, farm worker, wrote in his nomination letter.
Eric Nestor wears two distinct hat as a research assistant in the Division of Animal and Nutritional Sciences. He manages on-farm research activities for Eugene Felton, associate professor of ruminant nutrition, and the laboratory work analyzing samples gathered from the field.
“Eric has been an outstanding asset to my research program. If you have ever worked with Eric, you would see that he is a professional and an outstanding asset to those around him and always is willing to lend a hand to help others,” Felton wrote. “Eric is a dedicated team member with ‘the team’ being whoever needs his help.”