Robert L. Roth, Agricultural Engineer, Wins Agriculture 100's 2000 Faculty of the Year Award

Tom D'Anna
March 17, 2000


Robert L. Roth, resident director of the Maricopa and Citrus Agricultural Centers and professor of biosystems engineering at the University of Arizona's College of Agriculture is this year's recipient of the Arizona Agriculture "100" Council's Faculty Member of the Year Award.

Roth's major research emphasis, interdisciplinary irrigation management of field crops in Arizona's arid environment, is designed to solve local problems and employ an interdisciplinary approach involving all areas of plant, soil and environmental sciences.

Pete Dewhirst, UA professor emeritus and member of the Ag "100" Council, said, "Robert Roth deserves this award because of the diverse nature of his work and the significant impact his work has on agriculture in our state." Dewhirst added, "Robert also knows how to effectively and diplomatically manage people -- he's a natural born leader with good common sense."

Roth became director of the Maricopa and Citrus Agricultural Centers in 1997. The Agricultural Center spans 2,100 acres, with approximately 400 acres devoted to research. Roth supervises research using different forms of irrigation including, drip, sprinkler and flood with various cultivars of plants and water with a variable salt content. The remaining acres of the Center are used for demonstration farming; a process in which successful research projects are performed on a larger scale to show economic feasibility.

After earning his bachelor's degree in agricultural engineering from Montana State University, Roth earned a master's degree in the same field from the University of Arizona. In 1983, he earned his doctorate in civil engineering from the UA.

A member of the American Society of Agricultural Engineers, Roth has served as an officer of the Arizona Section and won the Society's 1995 Engineer of the Year award. He is a also a member of the American Society of Civil Engineers; Irrigation Association; U.S. Committee on Irrigation and Drainage; Association for Advancement of Industrial Crops; American Peanut Research and Extension Society; and the National Association of County Agricultural Agents.

Roth will receive his award at luncheon meeting of the Arizona Agricultural "100" Council on March 17, 2000. The meeting will be held at 11:30 a.m. in the Meat Science Lab at the Campbell Avenue Farm, 4101 N. Campbell Avenue.

The Arizona Agriculture "100" Council was organized in 1990 by Agriculture Dean Emeritus Bartley P. Cardon, Ph.D., to support the University of Arizona's College of Agriculture. The informal council consists of approximately 100 members of Arizona's agribusiness and production industries. Bill O'Brien serves as president and Wilbur Wuertz is past president. John Engen is director. Two awards are given annually. In the fall, the Agriculturist of the Year is named.

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