Auvermann selected to take leadership of Texas A&M AgriLife center in Amarillo

Dr. Brent AuvermannDr. Brent Auvermann has been selected as the new center director at the Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center in Amarillo, following the retirement of longtime director Dr. John Sweeten.

Auvermann is a professor in Texas A&M University’s department of biological and agricultural engineering, with a dual-appointment in both the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service and Texas A&M AgriLife Research. He will begin his new duties Feb. 1.

“Dr. Auvermann is recognized by his colleagues, commodity leaders, state and federal agencies, and livestock producers for his subject matter expertise and common-sense approach to solving complex issues,” said Dr. Craig Nessler, AgriLife Research director in College Station, in making the announcement.

“We are confident his leadership abilities will continue to build our Amarillo center’s role of importance not only to the Panhandle but to the entire state, as the faculty there strive to meet the needs of our clientele in the areas of agriculture and human health and well-being,” Nessler said.

“I’m thrilled about the next stage of my Aggie career,” Auvermann said.  “I love the Panhandle, I love the people here and I love agricultural research. My wife, Jennifer, and I are so grateful for this opportunity.”

Auvermann earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Texas A&M and his doctorate at Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colorado. He joined the AgriLife faculty in Amarillo in 1995.

He is a nationally and internationally recognized expert in environmental systems engineering applied to concentrated animal feeding operations. He has published research on air pollution emissions and abatement, nutrient management, evaluating biofuel feedstocks, carcass disposal and agricultural water use.

Since 2002, a primary focus of his research has been continuous monitoring of cattle feedlot dust. He has collected one of the world’s largest data repositories from in-field continuous monitoring of dust from commercial cattle feedlots.

Auvermann has been requested to speak at conferences throughout North America and serves as a research partner with faculty/scientists in Texas, Kansas, Nebraska, Arkansas, Colorado, California, Minnesota, New Mexico and Alberta, Canada.

Since 2008, he has served on the national Extension team that produced the web-based National Air Quality Site Assessment Tool for beef, dairy, swine and poultry operations, funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture-Natural Resources Conservation Service.

As a result of his expertise in mitigation techniques for controlling dust from cattle feedlot surfaces, he was the primary technical advisor to USDA–NRCS engineers in Texas during the design and implementation of the Atmospheric Resource Quality Management initiative for cattle feedlot under the Environmental Quality Incentives Program.

Auvermann also led a multistate Extension and research team that provided a detailed technical review of dairy environmental regulations proposed by the New Mexico Water Quality Conservation Commission and the New Mexico Environment Department. In 2008-2009, he served as the primary technical advisor to the Arizona Department of Environmental Quality and the Pinal County Air Quality Control District during the design of a Beneficial Management Practices standard for open-lot cattle feedlots and dairies.

He co-moderated a 2010 national workshop for standardized reporting of air emissions from livestock and poultry operations, jointly sponsored by the EPA and the USDA Task Force on Agricultural Air Quality. He also served on the USDA National Working Group on Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Livestock and Poultry.

In 2012, he was named to an EPA Science Advisory Board expert panel to review the agency’s methodology for estimating air emissions from animal feeding operations.

Auvermann is an award-winning researcher. He was a member of the air quality team that won the 2009 Vice Chancellor’s Award in Excellence for Research. In 2010, as a team member, he received the Governor’s Texas Environmental Excellence Award-Agriculture from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality.

He was a member of a team of engineers and scientists that won the National Excellence in Multistate Research Award from a USDA Experiment Station Committee on Organization and Policy, and he was recognized by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers as the G.B. Gunlogson Countryside Engineering Award winner for 2013.

Article by Kay Ledbetter | AgriLife Today

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