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Dr. Shad D. Nelson Named Sole Finalist for Dean of Dick and Mary Lewis Kleberg College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Human Sciences

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Dr. Shad D. Nelson has been selected as the sole finalist for the position of Dean for the Dick and Mary Lewis Kleberg College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Human Sciences at Texas A&M University-Kingsville. 

His appointment is pending approval from the Chancellor of the Texas A&M University System. 

Nelson has served as the interim dean of the college since 2016. He also is a professor of plant and soil sciences. Nelson has been a faculty member with Texas A&M-Kingsville since 2001. 

From 2006 to 2016, he served as chair of the Department of Agriculture, Agribusiness and Environmental Sciences. In that role, Nelson collaborated with faculty, staff and students housed within the department, the Citrus Center, located in Weslaco, and The King Ranch Institute for Ranch Management. In addition, he worked with the administrative unit heads to establish annual research goals of $200,000, which were met and exceeded. 

Nelson also held a leadership role in creating bridge programs between three community colleges--Del Mar College, South Texas College and Texas State Technical College--whereby a pipeline created by external research funding can follow students moving from a two-year college to four-year degree-granting institution Texas A&M-Kingsville. One hundred percent of all Texas A&M-Kingsville students enrolled in the program have graduated and fifty percent have continued on to graduate school. 

“I am honored and humbled to be asked to lead a college of dedicated and highly successful faculty and staff that are fully committed to the success of our undergraduate and graduate students at Texas A&M University-Kingsville,” Nelson said. “Being a part of Javelina Nation has been the highlight of my career, and I look forward to serving with our stakeholders for the continued growth and recognition of the Dick and Mary Lewis Kleberg College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Human Sciences.”  

Nelson has served as principal investigator, co-principal investigator, or project director on numerous research grants and contracts, and published or presented hundreds of professional papers in national and international venues. Recently, he was awarded the Blue Legacy Award in Agriculture by the Texas State Water Conservation Advisory Council. Nelson’s leadership in multi-institutional, team-centered research efforts as part his Texas A&M University-Kingsville Citrus Center research appointment over the past decade is being recognized by the governor’s office for the 2017 Texas Environmental Excellence Award in Agriculture this May, highlighting the impacts of the Texas Project for Ag Water Efficiency (TexasAWE) program in citrus. 

Prior to Texas A&M-Kingsville, Nelson conducted post-doctoral research with the USDA-ARS Water Management Research Lab in Fresno, California, and the USDA-ARS Crop Genetic & Environmental Research Lab in Gainesville, Florida. 

He holds a Ph.D. in soil science from the University of California, Riverside, along with an M.S. in agronomy and a B.S. in horticulture science, both from Brigham Young University. 


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