OSU Agriculture to honor three individuals with Champion award
Friday, August 5, 2022
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Oklahoma State University is honoring three individuals who have demonstrated a continuing commitment to agricultural sciences and natural resources.
Elizabeth Logan, Carl Whitcomb and Joe Williams have been named recipients of the 2022 Champion for OSU Agriculture Award. The honorees will be officially recognized during the OSU Agriculture Honors ceremony on Oct. 28.
“Each of the honorees makes us proud, and we want to celebrate their achievements,” said Thomas G. Coon, vice president and dean for OSU Agriculture. “They embody the ideals and mission of OSU Agriculture and support our rich tradition and history of improving the quality of life for Oklahomans through science-based research.”
Established in 2011, the Champion for OSU Agriculture Award recognizes individuals who are not graduates of the university’s Ferguson College of Agriculture but who have brought distinction to the OSU Division of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources.
The division is comprised of the Ferguson College of Agriculture and two state agencies: OSU Extension and OSU Ag Research.
Learn more about each honoree below or visit OSU Agriculture Honors online.
Elizabeth Logan, Haskell
With no children, Logan and her husband, George W., planned for the future of their 320-acre Logan Ranch in Muskogee County. In 1999, the couple decided to donate their estate, including their ranch, to OSU for agricultural research after their passing.
Although she has carried on George W.’s legacy since his death in 2011, Logan recently made the decision to donate the property while she is still living.
The decision to donate their land and property spurred from a trip to Stillwater in 1983. When their champion mare, Bandy, got sick, and after receiving no answers from local veterinarians, the couple took their horse to the OSU College of Veterinary Medicine.
OSU veterinarians identified the problem as hyperkalemic periodic paralysis disease, an inherited muscular genetic disease the equine industry was not familiar with at the time. Saving their mare is what instigated them to give OSU the ranch.
Other contributions from the Logans include an endowment fund as well as scholarship endowment funds for OSU Agriculture and the College of Veterinary Medicine.
Carl Whitcomb, Stillwater
Whitcomb is a world-renowned horticulturist and ornamental plant breeder and currently owns and operates Lacebark Inc. near Stillwater. His 40-plus years of research have led to numerous patents and registered trademarks as an inventor and entrepreneur.
Receiving his bachelor’s degree from Kansas State University and master’s and doctorate degrees from Iowa State University, Whitcomb joined the OSU Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture as an assistant professor in 1972. He was promoted to associate professor and then full professor before leaving OSU in 1985.
While serving on the faculty at OSU, Whitcomb had a significant impact on students and research and continues to be a source of inspiration and motivation for students interested in entrepreneurship and innovation in ornamental horticulture.
Whitcomb has established multiple scholarships for horticulture students and has given toward student experiences and a new educational facility at The Botanic Garden at OSU.
Joe Williams, Stillwater
Williams received both his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from New Mexico State University and his doctoral degree from Iowa State University. After graduating with his Ph.D., he joined the OSU Department of Agricultural Economics in 1975.
Williams was appointed as director of the Initiative for the Future of Rural Oklahoma in 2002. That same year, he was selected as the fifth director of the Oklahoma Agricultural Leadership Program, beginning with Class XI and continuing through Class XIV.
The Oklahoma Agricultural Leadership Program assists potential leaders in developing a deeper understanding of themselves and other people, including personal and group study interaction, communications skills and leadership roles in Oklahoma agriculture.
Referred to as “my favorite professor,” Williams has had a tremendous impact on the students he taught and advised throughout the years and is a great resource in keeping OSU Agriculture connected with agricultural economics alumni.