Presenting the Candidates for the 2020 SWSS Officer Elections
Vice President – Darin Dodds
Darrin Dodds was born and raised in Illinois and received a B.S. degree in Agriculture from Western Illinois University in 1999; a M.S. degree in Agriculture and Life Sciences (Weed Science) at Purdue University in 2002; and Ph.D. in Agriculture and Life Sciences (Weed Science) at Mississippi State University in 2007.
Darrin joined the faculty at Mississippi State University in June 2007 as an Assistant Extension Professor/Extension Cotton Specialist and currently serves as Professor and Head of the Department of Plant and Soil Sciences at Mississippi State University. Darrin has graduated 7 M.S. and 2 Ph.D. students and currently has 1 M.S. students and 2 Ph.D. students under his direction. He has served on an additional 24 graduate student committees. His current and former students have won over 48 oral or poster presentation awards. Darrin has authored or co-authored 41 refereed manuscripts, 2 book chapters, 55 extension publications, and 269 published abstracts. Darrin has received State Pride awards for Excellence in Extension at Mississippi State University in 2010 and 2011; the Southern Region IPM Center Pulling Together Award; the Wesley Farmer Outstanding Extension Specialist Award; the Cotton Researcher of the Year Award at the 16th annual National Conservation Tillage Systems Cotton and Rice Conference; the Extension Cotton Specialist of the Year award at the Beltwide Cotton Conferences; the Mississippi State University Gamma Sigma Delta Excellence in Extension Award; the Agricultural Achievement Award from the Mid-South Farm and Gin Show; J. Tom Cothren Young Cotton Physiologist of the Year Award at the Beltwide Cotton Conferences, the R.R. Foil Teamwork Award from Mississippi State University, and the Outstanding Extension Grantsmanship Award from Mississippi State University.
Darrin serves annually as a student contest judge at the Beltwide Cotton Conference, the Southern Weed Science Society, and the Weed Science Society of America. In addition, Darrin has served as student presentation contest committee chair or co-chair four times for the Southern Weed Science Society and three times for the Weed Science Society of America. He is currently serving as the chairperson for the SWSS summer weed contest and is a past president of the Endowment Foundation for the SWSS. Darrin has served on the SWSS and WSSA board of directors as the SWSS representative to the WSSA. In addition, he currently serves as secretary on the WSSA board of directors. He has been attending SWSS annual meetings and been active in the society since 2003 and is committed to the continued success of the SWSS as well as the multitude of students with whom he interacts.
Vice President – Jason Norsworthy
Jason Norsworthy completed his B.S. in Plant Sciences – Agronomy from Louisiana Tech University in 1995 and then his M.S. in Plant Sciences – Weed Science at the University of Arkansas in 1997. After completing his Ph.D. in Plant Sciences – Weed Science in 2000 from the University of Arkansas, he spent six years on the faculty at Clemson University. He returned to the University of Arkansas in 2006 and currently holds the academic rank of Distinguished Professor with tenure in the Crop, Soil, and Environmental Sciences Department, and he holds the University of Arkansas’ endowed Chair of Weed Science.
Jason teaches Principles of Weed Control and team-teaches Integrated Pest Management, Advanced Crop Science, and Weed Science Practicum. He enjoys spending time working with students and takes pride in the accomplishments of those that have completed 25 M.S. degrees, 7 Ph.D. degrees, 6 Postdoctoral Associates under his tutelage. Dr. Norsworthy is currently advising 10 M.S. students, 2 Ph.D. students, and 2 Postdoctoral Associates. He spends much of his time conducting research centered on developing strategies to manage herbicide-resistant weeds and reduce the risk of herbicide resistance. Jason has documented 12 new herbicide-resistant weeds in Arkansas or surrounding states. His research includes applied and basic studies on most Southern row crops in collaboration with R&D companies, other universities globally, and governmental entities who have a stake in sustainable weed management. Dr. Norsworthy has provided six invited international keynote addresses on the status of herbicide resistance in the U.S. and mitigation of resistance. His publication in the journal Weed Science outlining best management practices to mitigate the evolution of herbicide resistance has been one of the most highly cited papers in the journal. Beginning with his days as a graduate student, Jason has been active in the Southern Weed Science Society (SWSS) since attending his first meeting. He has served SWSS as a member of the Site Selection Committee from 2009 to 2013, and he chaired the committee in 2013 when San Juan, Puerto Rice was chosen for the SWSS/Weed Science Society (WSSA) joint meeting in 2016. He has also been actively involved on the SWSS Weed Contest Committee and the SWSS Herbicide Resistance Committee for many years. In 2012, He and colleagues at the University of Arkansas hosted the Southern Weed Contest in Fayetteville.
Jason organized the symposium on “Off-target Movement of Auxin Herbicides” for the 2013 SWSS meeting, and he co-chaired the SWSS symposium in 2018 on “Multiple herbicide and metabolic-herbicide resistance: Where are we?” From 2009 to 2011, he served as the SWSS Representative on the WSSA Publication Board. Dr. Norsworthy has also given invited symposia presentations at annual SWSS and WSSA meetings. He has been actively involved in WSSA, where he chaired the Teaching and Extension Committee in 2002 and served as a member of the Science Policy Committee (2009), the Integrated Weed Management Committee (2008-2009), Outstanding Paper in Weed Science Committee (2011-2013), Publication Board (2009-present), and Outstanding Young Weed Scientist Selection Committee (2018-2019). The SWSS recognized Jason with the Outstanding Educator Award in 2017. The WSSA named him a Fellow in 2018 along with recipient of the Outstanding Researcher Award and co-author of the Outstanding Weed Technology paper. He has served on the Southern Weed Science Board of Directors and the Weed Science Society of America Board of Directors from 2006 to 2009. Dr. Norsworthy served as an Associate Editor for Weed Technology from 2002 to 2011 and has since been serving as Editor-in-Chief for the journal. The Southern Weed Science Society has always been home, and he will continue to look for opportunities to serve in the coming years by increasing the Society’s membership and visibility.
Secretary/Treasurer – Matthew Goddard
Matt Goddard grew up outside of Paris, TN. He obtained a B.S. degree in Plant and Soil Sci. from the University of Tennessee at Martin (2004), a M.S. in Plant Science from the University of Tennessee at Knoxville (2006), and a Ph.D. in Weed Science from Virginia Tech (2009) where he studied the physiological and environmental response of turfgrass and weed species to mesotrione. Matt joined Monsanto Company in January 2010 as an Agronomic Research Manager at the company’s Leland Agronomy Center in Leland, MS. Later that year, he became a Testing Operations Manager for Monsanto’s Global BioEvaluations team where he managed the pesticide efficacy and crop tolerance programs on their 500ac research facility in Leland, MS. In January 2013, Matt joined the Technology Development and Agronomy organization where he currently serves as a Technology Development Representative for Bayer Crop Science in southern Arkansas. In this role, he is responsible for the agronomic testing and development of new Asgrow, DEKALB, and DeltaPine seed products, seed treatments, and herbicide systems. Additionally, he serves as the soybean Field Advancement Specialist for the midsouth and southeastern regions of the U.S. In this role, Matt works with Soybean Breeding, Product Management, and Technology Development teams in selecting new soybean varieties for pipeline advancement in the Asgrow product portfolio.
In 2017, Matt was honored by his company as a recipient of the Distinguished Development Award for his leadership of the Technology Development Field Sustainability Team. Founded in 2013, this team’s objective is to generate data to better understand the value of incorporating cover crops and reduced tillage practices into common cropping systems, and to develop recommendations for customers. Matt was a founding member and has led this team since 2014. They currently have projects with 6 different universities across the USA. Project data are also the subject of several meeting abstracts and peer reviewed journal articles being written to extend this information to the scientific community.
Matt has been actively involved in weed science at the state, regional, and national levels. His service to the Southern Weed Science Society has included hosting and judging the SWSS Weed Contest, he served on the Student Program Committee from 2012-2016 and was committee chair for two years. Most recently, Matt served on the SWSS Board of Directors holding the position of Member-at-Large (Industry) from 2016-2018.
Secretary/Treasurer – Hunter Perry
Hunter is currently serving as Field Operations Leader for Corteva Agriscience at Stoneville Research Center in Leland, MS. Hunter is a native of Greenville, MS where his earliest agricultural research experiences were achieved through working at local crop protection and seed research stations. He earned his B.S. and M.S from Mississippi State University in Golf and Sports Turf Management (2005) and Plant Pathology (2007), respectively. He earned his Ph.D. in Weed Science from Auburn University in 2011, before joining Dow AgroSciences that same year. His current responsibilities include people leadership as well as research center logistics for cotton, corn and soybean breeding, traits and crop protection programs.
Dr. Perry has been actively involved in the SWSS since 2008, both as a student as an industry professional. During his time with the SWSS, he has served as Chair and Vice Chair of the graduate student paper and poster contests multiple times. He has served as an Endowment Trustee for three years where he works with other members of the Endowment Committee to ensure the group accomplishes its educational objectives. Hunter has organized the SWSS Annual Golf Tournament from 2014 – 2019 and with the help of other members has helped raise >$30,000 to benefit the Endowment. Hunter regularly moderates paper sessions, serves on the Environmental and Technology Stewardship Committee and is willing to serve the society whenever he is called upon.
Member at-large (Industry) – Kelly Backsheider
Kelly grew up on a corn and soybean farm in southern Indiana where she spent a lot of time chopping weeds. She did not intend on pursuing a career in agriculture and instead went on to attend Saint Mary’s College in Notre Dame, Indiana to pursue a BS in Biology. After an internship with Dow AgroSciences, Kelly found her passion in weed science and decided to pursue a MS in Crop and Soil Sciences (Weed Science) at Michigan State University with Dr. Christy Sprague. In 2010, she moved to west Tennessee to complete her PhD in Plant Sciences (Weed Science) under the direction of Dr. Larry Steckel. Kelly has been very involved with the SWSS since she started her PhD almost 10 years ago. She’s presented at several meetings and competed in the SWSS Weed Contest and won 1st place individual in 2012. She also competed in both the SWSS graduate student paper and poster contest and won 1st place Oral Paper in 2011, 1st place Poster in 2012, and the SWSS Outstanding Graduate Student Award in 2013. She was also the SWSS Graduate Student Representative in 2012. Since then, Kelly has continued to stay involved in the SWSS and has moderated, judged the graduate student paper and poster contests, and been an active member of the Sustaining membership committee and the Graduate student contest committee (chair – 2020). In 2019, she also started the first SWSS women’s event where female graduate students, professors, and industry colleagues gathered to network at the annual meeting.
After completing her PhD in 2012, Kelly took a position as a field development representative with DuPont Crop Protection covering Indiana and Kentucky. She was heavily involved with several discovery and development projects in corn, soybean, wheat, and tobacco. In this role, she not only conducted several trials each year, but also spent time in commercial support for her sales teams and Pioneer agronomists. In December 2018, she transferred to the Data Management & Information Management Strategy Team with Corteva AgriSciences, the Agricultural Division of DowDuPont where she conducts several tasks for Integrated Field Sciences. This includes assisting with IFS data management tools and being a lead for North America IFS related to data manage as well as managing data management contractors.
Kelly resides in southern Indiana on the farm that she grew up on with her husband (Mark) and son (Rhett). She enjoys “hobby farming” with her family, hunting, working out, and teaching fitness classes at a local church.
Member at-large (Industry) – Clyde Smith
A native of south Mississippi, where weed control meant a Kaiser blade and fire. Clyde received a BS in Ag and Extension Education at Mississippi State University.
After working on the hoe crew for the weed science program, Clyde decided to pursue a master’s degree in Weed Science under David Shaw. He ended up working as a Research Assistant until completing his degree in 1990.
Upon graduation, Clyde worked for American Cyanamid as a Technical Service Representative, a Regional Sales Trainer, and Forestry Herbicide Sales Representative until leaving in 2000 to join Eden Bioscience (big mistake).
In 2001, Clyde started a forestry herbicide application business in the panhandle of Florida focusing on pine release and preplant herbicide applications.
Clyde joined the University of Florida Extension Service as a Regional IPM Agent in 2003, covering all pest control in row crops, vegetables, and forestry. He held this position until 2011 but did work for BASF in the Industrial Vegetation Management Group in 2006.
In 2011, Clyde joined UPI as a Field Development Representative in the Mid-South and Southeast covering all crop protection products. UPI became UPL and purchased Arysta Life Sciences in 2018.
After merging Arysta and UPL, Clyde is the Technical Development Manager for Aquatic Products for the US. Hope to be there a while.
Member at-large (Academia) – Shawn Askew
Shawn Askew was born on May 22, 1973 and raised in Mt. Olive, MS. He completed his B.S. in Agriculture Pest Management from Mississippi State University in 1995. He obtained his M.S. degree in Weed Science with a minor in Botany under the direction of Dr. David Shaw at Mississippi State University in 1997 and his Ph.D. degree under the direction of the late Dr. John Wilcut in Crop Science at North Carolina State University in 2001. His M.S. research dealt with red rice control in soybean/rice rotations and his Ph.D. work concentrated on competition between Polygonum weeds and cotton. Shawn was honored to be the first recipient of the SWSS Outstanding Graduate Student Award at the MS level in 1998 and he also was awarded the WSSA Outstanding Graduate Student Award in 2002.
Barely 10 days after defending his dissertation, Shawn started his career as Assistant Professor and Extension Specialist in turfgrass weed science at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in Blacksburg. He is responsible for the state’s weed management recommendations in turfgrass and coordinates the Phytochemistry and Radiological Materials Laboratory in the School of Plant and Environmental Science. His research has focused on turfgrass weed management, lateral movement of turfgrass herbicides, and managing transition of overseeded turfgrasses. Shawn’s research in turfgrass weed science $3 million and he has mentored 38 undergraduate and hourly employees and 14 graduate students. Shawn has authored or coauthored 79 peer-reviewed journal articles, 247 published abstracts, and 203 extension publications. In addition to his extension endeavors, Shawn currently mentors two Ph.D. students and guest lectures in 7 different courses at Virginia Tech. He was recently promoted to Professor.
Shawn and his students are very active in SWSS, NEWSS, and WSSA and have presented data at every SWSS and NEWSS meeting for these societies since he started at Virginia Tech in 2001. He has served on numerous committees for NEWSS, SWSS, and WSSA.
Member at-large (Academia) – Tom Barber
Tom received his M.S degree in Weed Science from University of Arkansas in 2000 and Ph.D. in Weed Science from Mississippi State University in 2004. In 2004 he accepted a position as Assistant Professor Extension Cotton Specialist for Mississippi State University. In 2007 he moved back to his home state of Arkansas and held an Associate Professor Cotton Extension Agronomist position with the University Of Arkansas Division Of Agriculture until 2012. He currently serves as Professor and Extension Weed Scientist with the University Of Arkansas Division Of Agriculture. Tom’s extension and applied research program focuses on weed control and weed resistance management outreach in Arkansas. Each year he conducts over 120 applied research trials in all major Arkansas row-crops including: corn, cotton, grain sorghum, rice, and soybean. In addition he recently accepted a director role over the Extension Research and Outreach Center in Newport.
Tom has been an active member of SWSS since 1998. He has served as vice president and president of the graduate student organization, and held a position as graduate student representative to the board of directors. In addition to serving as a judge numerous years for the graduate student paper and poster contests, Tom has served on the Sales Coordination committee, Local Arrangements committee, and as chair of the poster session. He currently serves on the Sustaining Membership committee, Continuing Education committee and the Finance committee.
WSSA Representative – John Byrd
John D. Byrd, Jr. was raised on a small cotton and tobacco farm near Hartsville, SC. He learned the importance of integrated weed management at a young age with a hoe. He received a B.S. from Clemson University, then M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from North Carolina State University. Over his career as Extension Weed Specialist and Professor at Mississippi State University, he has been responsible for extension weed control education for agronomic and horticultural crops, turfgrass, forages, wildlife food plots, roadside and utility rights of way vegetation management, invasive weed species in natural areas, Master Gardener training, sprayer calibration workshops, etc. His research efforts currently focus on forages, rights of way, and invasive weeds.
John currently has 2 graduate students and has served on committees of 79 additional students. He received the Southern Weed Science Society Outstanding Young Weed Scientist and Fellow Awards, the Mississippi State University Alumni Association Faculty Recognition Award for Service, the Dr. Mark E. Keenum Outstanding Extension Faculty Award, as well as several others. He has served on numerous committees of both the Southern Weed Science Society and Weed Science Society of America. He has more authored or co-authored numerous Extension publications, abstracts, and refereed journal articles.
WSSA Representative – Eric Palmer
Eric Palmer was born in Memphis, TN and grew up on a grain and cattle farm near Mount Pleasant, MS. He received his B.S. in Agricultural Pest Management (1995) and M.S. in Weed Science (1998) from Mississippi State University under the direction of Dr. David Shaw. He went on to complete his Ph.D. in Crop Science at Oklahoma State University under the direction of Dr. Don Murray in 2001.
Dr. Palmer began his professional career as an R&D Scientist with Syngenta Crop Protection at the Eastern Region Technical Center near Hudson, NY in 2001. In 2004, he was transferred to MS where he worked on the Southern Region Technical Center near Leland, MS for two years before becoming the R&D Field Development Rep for Mississippi. In 2008, Eric became an R&D Group Leader for the Weed Control Group at Syngenta’s Vero Beach Research Center near Vero Beach, FL were he coordinated Stage 1 herbicide testing for the U.S. and managed four full-time Scientists who conducted a diverse herbicide research program. In 2012, Eric moved to the North American headquarters in Greensboro, NC and is currently the Herbicide Product Biology Technical Manager.
Eric has been involved with the SWSS by serving as the Graduate Student representative while at OSU, been a judge for the Graduate Student paper contest on several occasions, and has served on the Board as a Member At-Large from Industry.
Outside of work Eric enjoys duck and deer hunting, spending time with family, and flying.
Endowment Board Trustee – Jason Bond
Jason Bond earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Agronomy and a Master of Science in Weed Science from Louisiana State University. Jason earned his Doctor of Philosophy degree in Agronomy/Weed Science from the University of Arkansas.
Jason served as Assistant Professor in charge of the Rice and Rotational Crops Agronomy project with the Louisiana State University AgCenter at the Rice Research Station in Crowley, LA from 2004 to 2006. He relocated to Mississippi State University’s Delta Research and Extension Center in Stoneville, MS, in 2006. As a Research/Extension Professor with Mississippi State University, Jason serves as the project leader for an applied weed science research/extension program focused in rice and soybean. Jason is also involved in technology transfer to growers through a variety of outlets.
Endowment Board Trustee –Frank Cary
Frank Carey earned his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Weed Science from the University of Arkansas under the direction of Dr. Ron Talbert and Dr. Roy Smith. Upon graduation in 1994, he went to work for Valent USA where he is still employed. During his 25-year career with Valent, Carey has held several positions within the company including Field Research Scientist, Field Market Development Specialist, and Product Development Manager for rice herbicides, and is currently Manager, MSARC Development.
In his current position, Carey serves as a combined R&D and Tech Service rep for Mississippi, manages Valent’s 250-acre research facility in Leland, MS and serves as a mentor for several of Valent’s young reps around the country. Throughout his career, Carey has been active in local, regional and national Weed Science Societies. Giving back to the next generation is a driver for Carey, and he has done so through serving as a host for Educational Enrichment Scholarship winners from SWSS (2015 and 2018) and WSSA (2018), volunteering at the annual SWSS weed contest, mentoring high school youth through his church youth group as well as interacting with college and graduate school students at every opportunity.
Frank has served SWSS on the Endowment committee and most recently served as chair of the Herbicide Technology and Stewardship Committee. In addition to his service to SWSS, Carey is active in the USA Rice Federation, is the current chair for the USA Rice Foundation and is on the Board of Directors of the Mississippi Agricultural Industry Council. Frank resides in Olive Branch, Mississippi with his wife of 30 years, Vicki.
Proceedings Editor – Paul Tseng (unopposed)
Te-Ming “Paul” Tseng graduated from Bangalore University, India in 2005 with a B.S. in Biotechnology, completed M.S. in Plant Biotechnology in 2007 from Allahabad Agricultural Institute, and then attended the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, where he completed his Ph.D. in Cell & Molecular Biology in Weed Science in 2013. Following his Ph.D., he worked as a postdoctoral research associate in University of Arkansas, and Purdue University. Dr. Tseng is currently an Assistant Professor of Weed Physiology in the Department of Plant and Soil Sciences at Mississippi State University (MSU). His research program is focused on studying the molecular basis behind weed species in response to environmental stress, including herbicide pressure and competition with crops. Currently, he is working on identifying herbicide resistant mechanisms in numerous weed species, and characterizing competitive traits in weeds so as to understand the genes and/or biochemical pathways associated with these competitive traits. Courses taught are, “Herbicide Physiology and Biochemistry”, and “Environmental Fate of Herbicides”. He has served as Major Advisor/co-Advisor of 4 M.S. and 5 Ph.D. students; served on 8 graduate student committees, advised 10 undergraduate honors student research; and hosted 8 International Visiting Scholars.
He has published 23 peer-reviewed journal articles, over 80 in conference proceedings, and, has won several awards including the Outstanding Reviewer Award (Weed Science Society of America (WSSA)); Excellence in Teaching Award (MSU College of Agriculture and Life Sciences); William M. White Special Project Awards (MSU Division of Agriculture, Forestry and Veterinary Medicine); Schillig Special Teaching Award (MSU Provost’s office); Outstanding Mentor Award (MSU Office of Student Leadership and Community Engagement); SEC Faculty Travel Award (Southeastern Conference); and, IWSS Travel Award (International Weed Science Society (IWSS)).
Dr. Tseng has served as, grant reviewer for numerous USDA, Southern SARE, MS NASA, and FFAR grants, where he has reviewed a total of 63 grant proposals; manuscript reviewer of journals including Weed Science, Weed Research, Crop Protection, Pest Management Science, Horticultural Science, and PLOS ONE, where he has reviewed a total of 65 manuscripts; and editorial board of Weed Science, Crop Science, Plant Gene, and Frontiers in Plant Science. He is also the WSSA representative to Technical Advisory Group for Biological Control Agents of Weeds; Strategic Communications Officer of the Gamma Sigma Delta International; president of the MSU Gamma Sigma Delta; and, Chair of the Publicity and Promotion Committee of the International Weed Science Society. Dr. Tseng is an active member of the Southern Weed Science Society (SWSS), WSSA and IWSS, and has been actively involved in these meetings since 2008. He has been married to Sally, and are blessed with one son, and one daughter.