With a vision for the future, the South Dakota Corn Utilization Council (SDCUC) has taken an unprecedented move to endow the dean’s chair for South Dakota State University’s College of Agriculture and Biological Sciences. The new program was revealed today at the Sioux Falls Convention Center, at 10 a.m. during a brunch hosted by the SDCUC and South Dakota State University (SDSU).
Agriculture is South Dakota’s number one industry and the state’s largest commodity organization endowed $2 million toward the dean position to assist the university in attracting the most qualified, leading applicants, bringing together excellence in the agriculture, research and academia arenas at SDSU.
“This extraordinary investment by the SDCUC will benefit every stakeholder in the state and region because it puts SDSU on a competitive footing to help recruit the nation’s best talent to our University,” said David L. Chicoine, SDSU President. “The endowment elevates the College and the University because it reflects a commitment of outside resources that are necessary in today’s climate. I hope that the SDCUC’s historic investment will be replicated by other individuals and organizations wanting to partner with SDSU and make our University even stronger.”
Over the years, the SDCUC has invested millions in checkoff dollars toward cutting edge research conducted by SDSU scientists, which has resulted in key management tools along with expanded knowledge throughout the industry including producers and agribusiness. As scientists continue to work to anticipate what answers the agricultural industry will need in the future, advanced leadership in the College of Agriculture and Biological Sciences at SDSU has never been more important.
“The SDCUC has a long track record of supporting agricultural research, scholarships and innovation at our land grant university and the endowment of the Dean’s position is a natural next step to advance our state’s knowledge and excellence in agriculture while cultivating our industry’s future leaders,” said David Fremark, president of the SDCUC.
On May 22, 2010, The University brought on one of the best ag leaders in the world to assume the Dean’s position, Dr. Barry Dunn. An SDSU alumnus, Dunn has been the executive director and the Kleberg Endowed Chair at the King Ranch Institute for Ranch Management at Texas A&M University-Kingsville since 2004. He is also an associate professor of agronomy and resource sciences. Prior to that, he was a member of the SDSU animal and range sciences faculty from August 2000 to January 2004. His relationship with SDSU includes three academic degrees—a bachelor of science in biology in 1975, a master of science in animal and range sciences in 1977 and his doctor of philosophy, also in animal and range sciences, in 2000.
“An endowment such as the one we are celebrating today provides SDSU an amazing opportunity as I prepare to build my team and set the direction of the College of Ag and Bio,” said, Dr. Barry Dunn, Dean of the College of Agriculture and Biological Sciences at SDSU. “I want to personally thank the SDCUC for their tremendous gift and their leadership for the Agricultural industry”.
“The SDCUC is proud to have ties of support to such an outstanding individual as Dean Dunn,” said Fremark. “His keen and unique qualifications pairing experience working as a farmer/rancher himself along with his top leadership in academia and hands on grassroots involvement in rural communities, makes him a rare find and a true asset to the future of agriculture in South Dakota. The SDCUC welcomes Dean Dunn as agriculture’s voice in academia and research at SDSU.”