Former Essex County Agriculture Agent John Kupcho Honored For Distinguished Service to Agriculture

L-R: Richard Norz, President of the NJ State Board of Agriculture, John Kupcho and NJ Secretary of Agriculture Douglas H. Fisher.

L-R: Richard Norz, President of the NJ State Board of Agriculture, John Kupcho and Douglas Fisher, New Jersey Secretary of Agriculture. Photo courtesy of NJDA.

Douglas H. Fisher

Source: New Jersey Department of Agriculture

John (Jack) Kupcho of West Caldwell, retired Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Essex County Agricultural Agent, was honored February 4 with a Distinguished Service Citation to New Jersey Agriculture at the State Agricultural Convention held in Atlantic City.

“Jack Kupcho changed the way farmers do business in New Jersey, helping to guide the industry toward direct marketing and high value crops,” said New Jersey Secretary of Agriculture Douglas H. Fisher. “The state agriculture industry owes a lot to Jack. He has been an innovator who has inspired younger agriculture agents as well as farmers.”

Jack Kupcho (GSNB – Soils and Crops ’74) earned a Bachelor of Science Degree in Ornamental Horticulture from the University of Tennessee. He received his Master of Science in Environmental Science and Urban Planning from Rutgers University. He currently holds the title of Professor Emeritus at Rutgers. [Read more…]

Cape Coastal Towns Embracing Native Species of Plants

The Japanese black pine is the Rodney Dangerfield of trees. It gets no respect. Banned from Avalon’s dunes for the last three years, the species is under consideration for elimination from Stone Harbor’s dunes. Recommended until 1990 by the USDA to be planted in shore areas, the tree- labeled invasive and a fire hazard- has since fallen out of favor… Several Cape May County coastal communities have already started to branch out on their own, and a strong trend toward cultivating native species is beginning to take root… "You have to look at the whole system," said Jenny Carleo, agricultural and resource management agent with Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Cape May County. "You have to look at the animals that depend on the food in the area, the utility of the beach for access, and you have to prioritize use. You have to ask, ‘What are the impacts to the whole environment of doing a certain activity?’"

Read the entire article at www.pressofatlanticcity.com »

Rutgers Ag Agent Richard Van Vranken Receives Distinguished Service to Agriculture Award

Photo i.d., l to r:  NJ State Board of Agriculture President Richard Norz, Richard VanVranken and NJ Secretary of Agriculture Douglas Fisher

L-R: NJ State Board of Agriculture President Richard Norz, Richard VanVranken and New Jersey Secretary of Agriculture Douglas Fisher. Photo by Jack Rabin.

Source: New Jersey Department of Agriculture

Richard VanVranken, agricultural agent, Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Atlantic County, was honored February 4 with a Distinguished Service Citation to New Jersey Agriculture at the State Agricultural Convention held in Atlantic City.

“Rick VanVranken has served New Jersey’s agriculture industry with passion, dedication and enthusiasm for decades,” said New Jersey Secretary of Agriculture Douglas H. Fisher.  “His wealth of knowledge and knack for innovation and promotion has made him an indispensable resource for our farmers in South Jersey.” [Read more…]

Former Rutgers University Patrol Horse Stabled in Wrightstown Wins Personality Award

For 22 years, Lord Nelson carried the Scarlet Knight mascot across Rutgers University’s football field and helped officers perform their duties as the school’s mounted patrol horse… "Even in his old age, his mind is as sharp as a tack. He does not miss a thing," said Karyn Malinowski, director of the Equine Science Center, which purchased Lord Nelson in 1978 to assist the university’s Department of Public Safety… The New Jersey Equine Advisory Board- a division of the state’s Department of Agriculture- awarded Lord Nelson the first-ever "Horse Personality of the Year" award to honor the contribution he’s made to education throughout his life, Malinowski said.

Read the entire article at www.nj.com »

Laura Lawson to Lead New Office of Agriculture and Urban Programs

Laura Lawson

Laura Lawson

Announcement from Robert M. Goodman, Executive Dean of the School of Environmental and Biological Sciences

I am delighted to announce the appointment, effective immediately, of Professor Laura Lawson as our new Dean of Agricultural and Urban Programs at the Rutgers School of Environmental and Biological Sciences.

Laura succeeds Professor Mark Robson who has ably served as the inaugural Dean in this position since it was created in late 2008. Please join me in thanking Mark for his service; he played a key role in the project to reinvent our teaching in agriculture though revision and reinvigoration of what is now the major in Agriculture and Food Systems. He also played important roles in recruitment and advising of students, and teaching of several courses offered through the major. He did this while sustaining a very active research program that involved a large commitment to international travel and scholarship. As previously announced, Mark is now the chair of the Department of Plant Biology and Pathology. [Read more…]