AgriLife Extension director to head International Extension Outreach at Borlaug Institute

Dr. Doug Steele (Texas A&M AgriLife photo)

Writer: Blair Fannin, 979-845-2259, b-fannin@tamu.edu

Contact: Dr. Doug Steele, 979-845-7967, douglas.steele@ag.tamu.edu

COLLEGE STATION – Dr. Doug Steele, who has served as director of the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service in College Station since 2012, will step down effective April 19 and become director for International Extension Outreach and Education with the Norman E. Borlaug Institute for International Agriculture at Texas A&M University.

Steele made the announcement Thursday to agency personnel. An interim agency director will be recommended by Dr. Patrick Stover, vice chancellor for agriculture and life sciences at Texas A&M, to the Texas A&M University System Board of Regents who meet April 18-20.

“Dr. Steele has led the agency through three Texas legislative sessions, championing the work of agency personnel with lawmakers,” Stover said. “Early in his tenure, he recognized the critical importance of program development and reorganized his executive team to place more emphasis on developing key programs.

“We all owe a debt of gratitude to Dr. Steele for his contributions to Extension. He will now bring his passion and energy to elevating Extension related activities to the Borlaug Institute.”

“I am excited about joining Dr. Elsa Murano and the Borlaug faculty and staff to expand their scope and presence in international Extension work with an emphasis on youth programs, workforce development and adoption of applied research in agriculture production,” Steele said in a memo to employees.

“The past six years as director have been a highlight of my 38-year Extension career. Every day I was honored to work with people who exemplified excellence and selfless service. You each will continue to do the good works that help Texans better their lives.”

Prior to serving as AgriLife Extension director, Steele was vice president for external relations and director of Extension at Montana State University. Steele’s Extension career began in Texas in 1981 as an assistant agent for agriculture and natural resources in Potter County.

        From 1985-1988, Steele served as the AgriLife Extension agriculture agent in Hutchinson County before going to Texas A&M to work on his advanced degrees. There he was an Extension associate for community and economic development from 1988-90, and an AgriLife Extension 4-H youth development specialist and assistant professor from 1990-93.

        Steele then went to Purdue University as Extension 4-H youth development specialist and assistant professor in the College of Education from 1993-1997 and to Colorado State University as assistant director of Cooperative Extension and state 4-H program leader from 1997-2004.

Montana State University hired Steele as vice provost and director of Extension in 2004, a position he held until assuming the director position in Texas in 2012.

Steele earned his bachelor of science degree in animal science and agribusiness from Panhandle State University in Goodwell, Oklahoma, in 1981, his master of agriculture in agronomy and horticulture from West Texas A&M University in Canyon in 1985 and his doctorate in educational human resource development from Texas A&M in 1992.

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