State native and nationally known researcher and producer to speak at two conference sessions


NASHVILLE, Tenn. - The Tennessee Forage and Grassland Council will present Dr. Vivian Allen as the featured speaker at its annual meeting and trade show on Friday, Nov. 2, at the Ellington Agricultural Center's Ed Jones Auditorium in Nashville. A producer from Huntland, Tenn., Dr. Allen also holds the title of professor emeritus in plant and soil sciences at Texas Tech University.
Dr. Gary Bates, director of the University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture’s recently created Beef and Forage Center, encourages all producers to attend. "This is an especially good year to come to the meeting," said Bates. "The program features several practical sessions on beef and equine production conducted by UT Extension specialists and research scientists as well as two sessions by Tennessee’s own Dr. Allen. Her first session will focus on understanding and managing the tall fescue endophyte. Her second talk will emphasize water use issues and concerns in the western U.S.," explained Bates.
Allen is a native of Tennessee where she grew up on the family farm in Huntland, which was acquired by her grandparents in the 1800s. She came into the land through her parents' estate in 1970, and today raises forages and Angus cattle (a cow-calf operation). Allen served as the Paul Whitfield Horn Professor and Thornton Distinguished Chair in Plant and Soil Sciences with Texas Tech University and as head of Forage/Livestock Systems Research Program. She is also a fellow in Crop Science Society of America (CSSA), the American Society of Agronomy (ASA), and the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). 
Dr. Allen received the American Forage and Grassland Council Medallion Award for Outstanding Contributions to AFGC and the Forage Industry in 1999 and the Outstanding Research Award for the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources and the Barnie E. Rushing Jr. Faculty Distinguished Research Award from Texas Tech in 2000. Dr. Allen served as the CSSA President in 2002, and she retired from Texas Tech in August 2011.
Registration for the meeting begins at 8:30 a.m. and the sessions begin at 9 a.m. A $25 registration fee covers the cost of membership in the Tennessee Forage and Grassland Council as well as lunch. The meeting will conclude by 3 p.m.
An accompanying trade show offers producers a look at and a lesson about the constantly changing technology necessary to make the best decisions for their farms and for their buyers.
For more information about the Tennessee Forage and Grassland Council, contact your county's UT Extension office or Bates at 865-974-7208.
Dr. Gary Bates, director, UT Beef and Forage Center, 865-974-7208