Texas A&M corn breeder recognized by national association

Writer: Kay Ledbetter, 806-677-5608, skledbetter@ag.tamu.edu
Contact: Dr. Seth Murray, 979-845-3469, sethmurray@tamu.edu

COLLEGE STATION – Dr. Seth Murray, a Texas A&M AgriLife Research corn breeder in College Station, will be recognized with the 2013 NAPB Early Career Award by the National Association of Plant Breeders and Plant Breeding Coordinating Committee.

Dr. Seth Murray, a Texas A&M AgriLife Research corn breeder from College Station, talks about his work during a field day. (Texas A&M AgriLife Research photo)

Dr. Seth Murray, a Texas A&M AgriLife Research corn breeder from College Station, talks about his work during a field day. (Texas A&M AgriLife Research photo by Li Zhang)

The Early Career Award recognizes an individual active in the plant breeding field who has shown exceptional accomplishments in their research, teaching and collaborations with others, said Phil Simon, chair of the awards panel, in the notification letter.

The award will be presented to Murray at the National Association of Plant Breeders annual meeting June 2-5 in Tampa, Fla.

“We are pleased to see Dr. Murray recognized by the National Association of Plant Breeders for his contributions to plant breeding research, teaching, service to NAPB and other professional organizations, and his mentoring of graduate students,” said Dr. Wayne Smith, Texas A&M University soil and crop sciences associate department head.

“Seth has established himself as an important component of our department and the agricultural industry of the state and nation,” Smith said. “There is no doubt that this award from NAPB will be one of many more to come during his career.”

Murray joined Texas A&M University in 2008 as an assistant professor in the department of soil and crop sciences, where he directs a program focused on both quantitative genetic discovery and applied corn breeding.

Important breeding traits in his program include improved aflatoxin resistance, drought tolerance, nutrient use efficiency in yellow corn for Texas and the southern U.S., and the incorporation of novel genetic diversity for perennial, blue and quality protein maize. He has developed statistical techniques for improved genetic mapping of natural variation and to increase understanding of crop improvement processes.

Murray earned a bachelor’s degree from Michigan State University and his doctorate at Cornell University.

Currently he is an associate editor for Crop Science magazine, associate editor for the Journal of Plant Registrations-maize, a Web editor for the National Association of Plant Breeders, and serves as chair or vice-chair for regional and national scientific meetings.

He has been or currently is a committee member for 29 graduate students, including 12 as a chair, teaches the graduate-level class “Molecular Quantitative Genetics in Plant Breeding” to doctoral students and co-teaches additional classes at the graduate and undergraduate level.

Murray has been an author or co-author of 25 refereed journal articles, three released germplasm lines and is the principal investigator/co-investigator of numerous federal, state and commodity research grants.

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