COLLEGE STATION – Daniel Hathcoat, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service small grains and oilseeds program specialist in College Station, has been recognized with a Superior Service award in the program specialist, manager or coordinator category by the agency.
The annual Superior Service awards, presented Jan. 9 in Bryan, recognize AgriLife Extension personnel who provide outstanding performance in education or other outstanding service to the organization and Texans.
Hathcoat’s nomination cited his work in obtaining and preparing seed for trials, maintaining plots and supervising data collection for numerous agronomic studies conducted throughout the state.
The extensive statewide uniform wheat variety trial conducted each year heavily relies on Hathcoat’s leadership to coordinate with seven other research programs in order to plant 30 locations over the course of three months, wrote Dr. Clark Neely, AgriLife Extension state small grains and oilseed specialist, College Station.
“In the past, Daniel collected seed from numerous seed sources around the country and distributed that seed for planting in nine of the 12 AgriLife Extension districts in Texas, in addition to overseeing the day-to-day maintenance and harvest of five of the 30 trials,” Neely said in his nomination.
Hathcoat’s contributions have made a direct impact on other AgriLife Extension programs also, Neely said, including forage, weed and soil fertility programs in order to help expand their capacities through planting and harvesting plots, repairing equipment or mentoring other program specialists.
In addition to variety testing, the Small Grains and Oilseeds Program continues to expand its scope of research projects, Neely said. That requires Hathcoat to plant, maintain and harvest over 40 additional trials spread across 11 locations statewide.
These agronomic trials evaluate a variety of products and management practices, including fertility, fungicide, insecticide, herbicide, planting date, crop rotation and plant growth regulators on small grains forage, wheat, oat, barley, canola and soybeans, Neely said, adding Hathcoat’s actions demonstrate the diversity of his abilities and time management skills.
“Daniel has the ability to get a lot done is a short amount of time, which in my opinion increases the capacity of the Small Grain and Oilseeds Extension Program by 25 percent or more, including the number of educational programs attended and number of trials conducted,” Neely said.
Hathcoat routinely speaks at producer meetings and field days, of which there have been 16 since 2013, and has co-authored five scientific journal articles, 17 AgriLife Extension publications, 13 county AgriLife Extension reports and 23 scientific abstracts over the past five years as the small grains and oilseeds program specialist.
Included in Hathcoat’s nomination were comments from Michael Berry, AgriLife Extension agent for Comanche County. Hathcoat had spoken at Berry’s forage field day.
“Following our field day, we went about the long process of harvesting the trials,” Berry said. “Unfortunately, as we were getting close to completion, the fuel pump wiring melted, making the harvester inoperable. Not to worry, Daniel retrieved his tool box and box of supplies and rewired the pump. We were able to complete harvest.”