UT Institute of Agriculture Presents Top Faculty and Staff Awards for 2020
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – The University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture recognized extraordinary service from members of the faculty and staff across the state at its annual awards and promotions event, held this year on August 21, 2020. Honorees were recognized virtually during a Zoom presentation rather than a fun, in-person luncheon. This change in venue did not minimize the amazing accomplishments for 2020. Many of the awards are gifts made possible by past faculty, alumni and friends of the Institute.
The J.E. Moss Award recognizes an outstanding recipient from each of UTIA’s four units and William Hart is the winner for the Herbert College of Agriculture. Shawn Hawkins was the winner for UT Extension, Robert Reed won for the College of Veterinary Medicine and David White for AgResearch.
“I am extremely honored and humbled to receive the J.E. Moss Achievement Award,” Hart says. “I am truly blessed to have had mentors during my master’s program that recognized something in me that I did not realize myself. If it had not been for them, I would not have chosen the career path I did. It is truly an honor to be recognized for doing something you love for 38 years. I have been blessed with a career that has allowed me to teach and advise hundreds of students and work with great faculty and staff at the University of Tennessee.”
In his nearly four decades with the Institute, Hart’s academic and research focus has been on power and machinery, including expertise in small machinery systems, chemical applications and precision agriculture. Hart also oversees the annual lawnmower cleanup clinic, a student-led project from the campus chapter of the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers. Hart has also been influential in organizing UTIA’s Ag Day celebration each fall, which includes an antique tractor display. Hart was honored with the UT Teaching Award in 2012, as well as the Prof Lidval and Webster Pendergrass Awards from UTIA. Outside of teaching and research, Hart enjoys working on his own farm.
UT Institute of Agriculture Senior Vice President Tim Cross hosted the Zoom session for the award winners and praised them for their work. “Now more than ever, it’s critical that we take time to acknowledge the award-winning work that our faculty and staff carry out, even in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic,” Cross says. “Tennesseans can count on the real-life solutions that the UT Institute of Agriculture provides to students and stakeholders from communities throughout Tennessee and beyond to enhance the economy, conserve the environment, and develop leaders for the future.”
Through its mission of research, teaching and extension, the University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture touches lives and provides Real. Life. Solutions. utia.tennessee.edu.