New Director Appointed for Alson H. Smith Jr. Agricultural Research and Extension Center | VTX

Kevin Rice has been named the new director of the Alson H. Smith Jr. Agricultural Research and Extension Center (AREC), effective August 10.

Rice most recently served as an assistant professor of entomology in the Department of Plant Sciences at the University of Missouri.

“We are very pleased to announce that Dr. Rice is the new director of the Alson H. Smith Center for Agricultural Research and Extension,” said Saied Mostaghimi, associate dean for research at the College of Agriculture and Agriculture Sciences. life and director of the Virginia Agricultural. Experiment station. “I am confident that Dr. Rice has the appropriate leadership qualities and experience to continue to improve the research, extension, and outreach programs at Alson H. Smith Jr. AREC and be an effective entomologist in Virginia. “

Located in Winchester, the center serves Virginia’s commercial fruit and value-added horticultural food crop industries through research, educational programs, development of sustainable production systems and technologies, and enhanced public awareness. horticultural opportunities and benefits.

Prior to joining the University of Missouri in 2018, Rice served as a postdoctoral researcher at the Appalachian Fruit Research Station with the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Agricultural Research Service, where he reviewed the research of food and visual ecology of invasive species in berry production. He was also a postdoctoral researcher at Penn State University in the Department of Entomology and an extension officer at the University of Arizona.

Rice received her bachelor’s degree in biology from the University of North Carolina at Asheville and her master’s degree from Auburn University. He completed his doctorate at The Ohio State University.

Rice has extensive experience in her field and a solid record of scholarship and graduate student mentorship. It has successfully secured extramural funding from federal agencies and private industry to support its research and extension programs.

Rice has held several leadership positions, including as a state extension specialist in Missouri. In this role, he served as the lead biopesticide expert for the Minor Use Foundation. He has conducted field trials in 30 countries in Asia, Africa and Latin America and has collaborated with staff from the Asia-Pacific Association of Agricultural Research Institutes, the Economic Community of Eastern West Africa, the Center for Agriculture and Bioscience International, the USDA-Foreign Agricultural Service, and the US Embassy.

“I am thrilled to join an excellent intuition with a strong reputation in research and extension activities,” Rice said.

Lana T. Arthur