JACKSBORO – Past experience is what John Villalba says he will rely upon in his new position as the Texas AgriLife Extension Service agriculture and natural resources agent for Jack County.
Villalba, who began his new job March 1, is no stranger to either the Extension system or agricultural education.
“We are excited to have John join our AgriLife Extension staff in Jack County,” said Hurley Miller, AgriLife Extension district administrator in Dallas. “With his Extension experience in New Mexico and his ability to integrate that into the program at Jack County, he will be a great addition to our team.”
Most recently, Villalba served as the New Mexico Cooperative Extension Service 4-H agent in Quay County. Prior to that, he served as an agricultural science teacher in Gallina, N.M. and also in Texas at Hereford High School.
He earned his master’s degree from New Mexico State University, Las Cruces, and his bachelor’s degree from Texas Tech University, Lubbock.
Villalba said he was lucky to have worked with agriculture agents who were products of The Texas A&M University System, starting their careers in Texas and then working in New Mexico. That helped prepare him for his job today, as well as personal experience.
“I wasn’t raised on a farm or ranch,\” he said. \”I was a city kid in Lubbock and 4-H opened my eyes to agriculture. I also spent summers as a kid with my grandfather in Hereford, and he was a big believer in Extension and the agents, who he considered the men of knowledge in a county.”
Villalba said while he was an agent in New Mexico, he had a small farm and cow/calf herd near Tucumcari, where he tried out the different things he heard about before passing them on to Extension clientele.
That past experience and respect for AgriLife Extension is what he plans to use as he serves the clientele of Jack County.