Texas Tech University


Texas Tech’s Department of Plant and Soil Science advances J.D. Booker

Texas Tech’s Department of Plant and Soil Science advances J.D. Booker

J.D. Booker has been named an assistant professor in urban soils with Texas Tech’s Department of Plant and Soil Science, according to officials within the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources. He officially stepped into his new post on Jan. 1.

Booker indicated that he is interested in studying the cycling and interactions among water, sediments, nutrients, and contaminants in urban, disturbed, specialty food production, horticultural, recreational, and industrial soils and their associated ecosystems. The research program will implement a combination of field research and eco-hydrological modeling, designed to evaluate these areas of interest at the system level.

Data resulting from his research will provide relevant data sets, methodologies, and tools to support decisions made by urban designers, land managers, the regulatory community, urban and specialty food production organizations, and additional urban, municipal, and industrial stakeholder groups.

One of his primary goals here at Tech is to integrate the urban soils program with the collaborative research, teaching, and outreach necessary to develop the department’s new area of focus in local food and wine production. Understanding soil hydrology, nutrient, and potential pollutant balances in intensively managed viticulture and specialty food production will increase the environmental and economic sustainability of these unique agricultural production systems.

Participating in this new focus area will facilitate development of new curriculum and research opportunities for students interested in agriculture and environmental quality management in urban, industrial, and intensively managed settings, he said.

Prior to joining the Tech faculty, Booker worked as a research scientist and graduate research assistant/instructor with Tech’s Plant and Soil Science Department. He served as an environmental compliance specialist with the City of Lubbock, assistant research scientist with Texas Agrilife Research’s Soil Fertility Research Group, and project scientist with the Environmental Protection Department at the Battelle Memorial Institute’s Pantex plant.

Recent honors for Booker include Tech’s Plant and Soil Science Outstanding Dissertation (2013); Helen De Vitt Jones Excellence in Graduate Teaching Award (2012); James A. “Buddy” Davidson Water Conservation Endowed Scholarship (2012); Noble and Kay Koepp Graduate Fellowship Scholarship (2011); and A.W. Young Graduate Student Endowed Support Scholarship (2011).

Booker received his bachelor’s degree in soil science from New Mexico State University-Las Cruces, and his master’s degree from Auburn University. His doctorate degree is from Texas Tech. He is a member of the Soil Science Society of America, Agronomy Society of America, Crop Science Society of America, and Soil and Water Conservation Society.

Written by Norman Martin

CONTACT: Eric Hequet, Department Chair, Department of Plant and Soil Science, Texas Tech University at (806) 742-2838 or eric.hequet@ttu.edu



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