​More Than 30 Employees Recognized for Outstanding Achievements

Photo of awards winners at UTIA luncheon
The University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture recently recognized outstanding faculty and staff at its annual Awards and Promotions Luncheon. Pictured above are the winners of the J.E. Moss Achievement awards with UTIA leaders. From left to right (front row), Tim Cross, chancellor of UTIA; John Wilkerson, professor of Biosystems Engineering and Soil Science; Carla Sommardahl, DVM and associate professor of Large Animal Clinical Sciences; Fred Tompkins, interim dean of AgResearch; Andrea Ludwig, associate professor of Biosystems Engineering and Soil Science, and Robert Burns, dean of UT Extension. Also shown on the back row, from left to right, are Jim Thompson, DVM and dean of the College of Veterinary Medicine; William M. "Bill" Park, professor of Agricultural and Resource Economics; and Caula Beyl, dean of the Herbert College of Agriculture. Phot​o by T. Salvador, courtesy UTIA. 

Updated on 8/24/2018. All releases now online. Click on the award/name of interest.


KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – The University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture recognized some of its top faculty, staff, researchers and extension experts at UTIA’s annual Awards and Promotions Luncheon held on the UTIA campus in Knoxville August 17, 2018. Many of the awards are gifts made possible by past faculty, alumni and friends of the Institute.

Chancellor Tim Cross hosted the award winners and praised them for their work. “The people we recognized at our ceremony exemplify the Institute of Agriculture’s commitment to our mission of providing real life solutions through teaching, discovery and service on campus - throughout Tennessee and across the world,” Cross says. “Their hard work and dedication inspires all of us to be our best.”  
The 2018 winners are:

Bill and Ann Hicks New Extension Worker Award – Rachel York,​ UT Extension, Unicoi County

Vernon and Ida Darter Award – Elizabeth Renfro,​ UT Extension, Washington County 

Lloyd and Nettie Downen Award – Rob Holland,​ UT Center for Profitable Agriculture, Columbia

G.L. Carter 4-H Agent Award – Amanda Woody,​ UT Extension, Pickett County

Charles and Patricia Goan Excellence in Customer Service Award  Kim Giorgio,​ UT Center for Profitable Agriculture, Columbia

Alice Ann Moore 4-H Agent Award – Dan Owen,​ UT Extension, Lincoln County

Tennessee Association of Agricultural Agents/Hicks Award – 
​​​David Bilderback,​ Area Farm Management Specialist, Loudon County
Matt Webb,​ UT Extension, Marshall County

Charles and Julie Wharton Award of Extension Achievements –
Calvin Bryant,​ UT Extension, Lawrence County
Kathy Finley,​ UT Extension, Robertson County
June Puett,​ UT Extension, Hamilton County

Cavender Award for Best Publication – Megan Leffew and Chuck Grigsby, UT Center for Profitable Agriculture, Columbia

J.E. Moss Achievement Awards – 
Andrea Ludwig,​ UT Extension
Bill Park,​ Herbert College of Agriculture
Carla Sommardahl,​ UT College of Veterinary Medicine
John Wilkerson,​ UT AgResearch

E.J. Chapman Award – Regina Dalton,​ UT College of Veterinary Medicine

Gamma Sigma Delta Team Award – Regenerative Medicine Team,​ UT College of Veterinary Medicine

Webster Pendergrass Award – Chris Clark,​ UT Agricultural and Resource Economics

Mildred Pendergrass Award – J.R. Arnold,​ Clyde Austin 45-H Center, Greeneville

AgResearch Impact Award – Carl Sams,​ UT Plant Sciences

Professional/Academic Award – Sherri Dugger,​ UT Plant Sciences

B. Ray Thompson Award – Lannett Edwards,​ UT Animal Science

Williams – E.R. “Prof” Lidvall Teaching Award – Andrew Pulte,​ UT Plant Sciences

William D. Bishop Award – Ty Petty,​ UT Extension, Unicoi County

William T. Miles Award for Community Service – Phillip Myer,​ Animal Scienc​e

T.J. Whatley Young Scientist Award – Chris Boyer,​ UT Agricultural and Resource Economics

In addition to these awards, the following UTIA professionals received promotions to professor:

Doris D’Souza, Food Science
David Harper, Forestry, Wildlife and Fisheries
Graham Hickling, Forestry, Wildlife and Fisheries
Kimberly Newkirk, Biomedical and Diagnostic Sciences, CVM
Forbes Walker, Biosystems Engineering and Soil Science
Annette Wszelaki, Plant Sciences

Jennifer E. Stokes, DVM, was promoted to a clinical professor in the Department of Small Animal Clinical Sciences.​

Please see this link​ for a list of all the 2018 UTIA promotions.

The University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture celebrates 50 years of excellence in providing Real. Life. Solutions. through teaching, discovery and service. ag.tennessee.edu​.


Contact: Charles Denney, UTIA Marketing and Communications, 865-382-8058, cmdenney@utk.edu