Endowed professorships appointed in the College of Agricultural Sciences

Endowed professorships appointed in the College of Agricultural Sciences

Oregon State University’s College of Agricultural Sciences is pleased to announce several new appointees to endowed positions, including several new endowed professorships.

Dr. Carol Lorenzen, Department Head of Animal and Rangeland Sciences, has been appointed as the William C. Hoffman Animal & Rangeland Sciences Professor. This newly endowed position is a gift from the estate of William C. Hoffman to support department and faculty excellence in animal and rangeland science.

Lorenzen joined Oregon State in 2020 from the University of Missouri where she was a professor in the Division of Animal Sciences and an International Marketing Specialist in the USDA Agricultural Marketing Service (USDA-AMS). She is a recognized national leader with the USDA, American Meat Science Association, and the National Cattleman’s Beef Association, among other renowned organizations. Since taking on the department leadership role, she has actively worked with colleagues and stakeholders across the state to develop a comprehensive Needs Assessment for the Beef and Dairy Industries in Oregon which was released in October 2021. In addition, she led a comprehensive external review of the Animal and Rangeland Sciences farms and units in Corvallis—the first time anything like this has been done in the Department.

Dr. Scott Lukas in the Horticulture Department recently was named the Northwest Berry Production and Management Professor. This endowed position was established in 2011 with contributions from multiple industry leaders and individuals. The purpose of this endowment is to ensure and carry on the excellent work of Bernadine Strik, who recently retired after 34 years at Oregon State pioneering research and collaborating with the dynamic Oregon berry industry.

With a PhD from the University of Hawaii at Manoa, Lukas has served the land-grant mission of research, teaching, and extension at Oregon State University since 2016. For the past six years, Lukas has built a horticulture program in eastern Oregon with a focus on high value irrigated specialty crops, such as organic blueberries. His past position revolved around advancing agricultural technologies, optimizing crop production while reducing unwanted environmental effects, emphasizing new strategies for irrigation, fertilization, and horticultural and soil management.  That expertise will carry into this new position as Lukas will continue to work closely with berry stakeholders in the region to develop programmatic research objectives.

Dr. David Lewis in Applied Economics received the Emery Castle endowed professorship in Resource and Rural Economics. Established in 2003, the primary purpose of this endowment is to support research and education in rural or resource economies, with an important secondary purpose to enhance the intellectual environment of the Department of Applied Economics.

With a PhD from Oregon State University, Lewis specializes in environmental and natural resource economics. His research addresses economic issues related to land use, ecosystem service provision, and conservation science. Using microeconomic theory and micro-econometric tools, Lewis studies how landowners make decisions, how land-use decisions affect ecosystem services, how the public values ecosystem services, and how conservation policy can be designed to provide ecosystem services. His most recent research applications focus on threatened species conservation and climate change adaptation in forestry.

Dr. Tiffany Garcia in Fisheries Wildlife and Conservation Sciences recently received the honor of the Bob & Phyllis Mace Watchable Wildlife Endowed Chair. Established in 1993, this endowed position honors the legacy of Bob Mace who coined the phrase “watchable wildlife” as an alternative to “non-game” more than four decades ago, along with his wife Phyllis, a graduate from the College of Science.

Garcia holds a PhD from the University of Kentucky, and her research examines the direct and indirect effects of environmental stress on aquatic communities. With a focus on local and invasive amphibians, Garcia often works in ephemeral pond and stream habitats exploring agricultural impacts on aquatic biodiversity and agroecology strategies. There are three initiatives she currently is focused on as part of this endowed professorship, including: a bilingual children’s book series detailing amphibian life histories and conservation threats in the Pacific Northwest; a civic science initiative monitoring for mercury contamination with community outreach efforts along the Willamette River; and, a climate resilience project involving wetland ecosystems.

“Endowed positions such as these are critical to ensuring we are able to attract and retain the highest caliber talent to lead critical research, teaching and outreach needs for our complex agricultural and natural resource systems,” said Staci Simonich, dean of the College of Agricultural Sciences. “It is one important way that individuals and industry can make a lasting impact on Oregon’s economic, environmental, and social health.”

In addition to these recently announced endowed professorships, the Department of Microbiology which is housed in both the College of Agricultural Sciences and the College of Science recently appointed Associate Professor of Microbiology Kimberly Halsey  as the inaugural Excellence in Microbiology Faculty Scholar. With this new endowed position, Halsey will advance excellence in her research and teaching at Oregon State for a term of five years, through November 11, 2026. More information about Halsey’s appointment can be found on the College of Science website.

The College of Agricultural Sciences at Oregon State University is Oregon's principal source of knowledge relating to agricultural and food systems, and a major source of knowledge regarding environmental quality, natural resources, life sciences, and rural economies and communities worldwide. The College provides undergraduate and graduate education leading to baccalaureate and graduate degrees, and extended education programs throughout Oregon and beyond. Its research programs create knowledge to solve problems and to build a knowledge base for the future. It is a source of information and expertise in integrating and applying knowledge with benefits that are felt in domestic and international settings.