U.S. Undersecretary for Agriculture Visits the College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources

U.S. Department of Agriculture Undersecretary for Research, Education and Economics, Gale Buchanan, Ph.D., visited the MU College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources recently to better understand the resources that MU has in undergraduate instruction, research and extension.

He toured Agriculture Research Service (ARS) facilities and the Food and Agricultural Policy Research Institute (FAPRI).

The undersecretary for research, education and economics oversees USDA research, education and extension, economic programs, ag statistics and the National Agriculture Library.

“Dr. Buchanan was impressed with the working relationships between ARS and CAFNR’s academic units,” said Dave Baker, assistant dean for agriculture and natural resources extension. “He was also impressed with the opportunities for partnerships between CAFNR and the USDA in energy and ag policy.”


Buchanan received B.S. and M.S. degrees in agronomy from the University of Florida in 1959 and 1962, respectively, and a Ph.D. in plant physiology, with minors in botany and agronomy, from Iowa State University in 1965.

Buchanan spent the first 21 years of his professional career with Auburn University in the Department of Agronomy and Soils, with primary teaching and research responsibilities in weed science.

He served as dean and director of the Alabama Agricultural Experiment Station from Oct. 1, 1980 to Sept. 30, 1985.

On April 14, 1986, he was appointed associate director of the Georgia Agricultural Experiment Stations and resident director of the Coastal Plain Experiment Station. He served as interim director of the Georgia Agricultural Experiment Stations from June 1994 to February 1995. He became dean and director of the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences March 1, 1995 and served until 2006.