Dr. Guy Fipps is known for his regional, national and international efforts
By: Robert Burns
DENVER — Dr. Guy Fipps, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service engineer, College Station, recently received a national award from the U.S. Committee on Irrigation and Drainage.
Fipps was presented with the Merriam Improved Irrigation Award at the committee’s national conference, held Oct. 23 in Denver.
The award was presented by Bryan Thoreson, Davids Engineering Inc., Davis, Calif., and president of the committee.
“USCID was pleased to present Dr. Guy Fipps with the award in recognition of his many contributions to improving irrigation practices in Texas, the U.S. and throughout the world,” Thoreson said.
The committee is a member of the International Committee on Irrigation and Drainage. According to the international committee’s website, the organization was “established in 1950 as the leading scientific, technical and not-for-profit, non-governmental organization. Through its network of professionals spread across more than a hundred countries, (the committee) has facilitated sharing of experiences and transfer of water management technology for over a half century. ”
“The Merriam award is given to a member of the U.S. committee who has made meritorious contributions to the advancement, understanding or attainment of the goals and objectives of USCID, the International Commission on Irrigation and Drainage, and/or the Fund For Furthering Flexible Irrigation,” according to the award documentation.
In Texas, Fipps is known for his development of a combination of tools, including the TexasET Network and website, geographic information, land surveys and databases that are used by irrigators to improve efficiency and reduce irrigation water losses, according to Charles Swanson, AgriLife Extension specialist who works closely with Fipps.
Fipps earned his bachelor’s in liberal arts from the University of Texas in 1977, a bachelor’s in agricultural engineering from Texas A&M University in 1979, and a master’s and a doctorate from North Carolina State University in 1984 and 1988, respectively. He has been an AgriLife Extension specialist and a Texas A&M faculty member since 1988.
Internationally, Fipps’ work has targeted improvement of irrigation – including surface irrigation – through project consultation/advisory efforts and educational program development and support in Iraq, China, Mexico, Jordan, Peru and Jamaica, Swanson said.
Other major awards Fipps has received include the Award for the Advancement of Surface Irrigation from the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers in 2012, the ICID Best Paper Award in 2011 and AgriLife Extension’s award for Superior Service in 2009.
He helped found the Texas Agricultural Irrigation Association and served as a director from 1991-1992. He also served as associate editor for the Journal of Applied Engineering in Agriculture from 1995 to 1997. He was the founding director of the Texas A&M Irrigation Technology Center.
In addition, Fipps held a temporary appointment with the Department of State and served as the Senior Advisor for Water at the U.S. Embassy, Kabul Afghanistan in 2005-2006.
Fipps is a member of numerous other professional organizations, including the Irrigation Association, American Society of Civil Engineers, the American Geophysical Union and the American Water Resources Association.