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By Kenner Patton
Dr. Jeff Gore, a Mississippi State University research professor, was recently appointed to the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Farm, Ranch, and Rural Communities Committee (FRRCC) earlier this month. U.S. EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler and U.S. Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith appointed Gore to the committee, and he will be one of the 33-member panel.
In selecting committee members, EPA reviewed nearly 150 applications. Many qualifications were considered as to whether candidates were qualified. Some of those considerations were if they have experience in policy and agricultural issues relating to EPA programs, are actively engaged in ag production, demonstrate strong leadership skills, and shown the ability to examine and analyze complex environmental problems. They also need to have experience in working on issues where building consensus is necessary, as well as being able to volunteer time to the committee’s activities.
FRRCC was established in 2008 and provides independent policy advice, information, and recommendations to EPA administration on a range of environmental issues and policies that effect agriculture and rural communities. Committee members include representatives from academia, the ag industry and their stakeholders, non-governmental organizations, and state and local governments. Hyde-Smith, who holds seats on the Senate Agriculture and Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committees, recommended Gore for the FRRCC position.
Dr. Steve Martin, Associate Director, Extension Professor, and Interim Head at Delta Research and Extension Center is excited about Dr. Gore’s news. “It is essential to have Jeff on this committee because of his understanding of commercial agriculture in the Mississippi Delta. And the perspective he can provide to that committee, based on his experience and expertise, will be invaluable”, said Martin.
“Having the honor to serve on this committee is a tremendous responsibility,” says Gore. “And being able to represent Mississippi State University as well as the growers of the mid-south agricultural community is a duty that I will take very seriously. I also want to thank the EPA administrator, Cindy Hyde-Smith, and Drs. Shaw and Martin for allowing me to serve in this capacity,” Gore added.
Gore has a dual appointment as an entomologist with the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station and MSU Extension. He is stationed at Mississippi State University’s Delta Research and Extension Center, located in Stoneville.
Dr. Gore is one of the 33 members to be appointed; each serves two- or three-year terms beginning on June 15, 2020.
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