Turfgrass Expert John Sorochan Receives J.E. Moss Achievement Award  

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UT Institute of Agriculture Presents Top Faculty and Staff Awards for 2022 

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 on the UTIA campus in Knoxville August 16, 2022. Many of the awards are gifts made possible by faculty, alumni and friends of the Institute.  

UT Institute of Agriculture Senior Vice Chancellor and Senior Vice President Carrie Castille hosted the award winners and celebrated their work. “I am so excited to recognize excellence as exemplified by the award-winning members of our UTIA faculty and staff,” Castille says. “Their continuing commitment to our land-grant mission ensures that the Institute develops and delivers real-life solutions to improve the health and economy of our state and beyond while also enhancing our environment.”   

John Sorochan is one of four winners of the J.E. Moss Achievement Award. Sorochan is a Distinguished Professor of Turfgrass Science and Management, and co-director for the UT Center for Athletic Field Safety. He is a leader in the design, installation and maintenance of safe, sustainable and attractive playing surfaces. 

Established in memory of J.E. and Ann Moss, this award recognizes achievement in teaching, research, and Extension for the UT Institute of Agriculture. Awards are provided yearly for each of the four UTIA units. Sorochan represents UT AgResearch in receiving this honor. The other winners are Chris Graves for the Herbert College of Agriculture, Jimmy Hayes for the UT College of Veterinary Medicine, and Lew Strickland for UT Extension. 

“It is very humbling to be recognized for the J.E. Moss Achievement Award. I am very fortunate to get to work with excellent colleagues, students and staff who make my job super easy,” Sorochan says. 

Sorochan and colleagues have built a grass tennis court at the East Tennessee AgResearch and Education Center. Grass courts are rare because they’re not easy to maintain, but Sorochan and his group created a smooth surface with a perfect bounce. Past plant sciences students who have studied with Sorochan have interned at Wimbledon, the nation’s top golf courses and at National Football League stadiums.  

Through its land-grant mission of research, teaching and extension, the University of Tennessee Institute of Agriculture touches lives and provides Real. Life. Solutions. utia.tennessee.edu.

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