AgriLife News: Gould named AgriLife Research and Extension Center Director, Dallas

Gould will hold joint leadership roles in Weslaco and Dallas

By: Mike Jackson, 972-952-9232  
Contact(s): Dr. Michael Gould, 956-968-5585, jmgould@ag.tamu.edut
Dr. Frank Gilstrap, 972-231-5362, f-gilstrap@tamu.edu

DALLAS - Dr. Michael Gould has been appointed the new director of the Texas AgriLife Research and Extension Center in Dallas. He will also retain his current position as director of the Texas AgriLife Research and Extension Center in Weslaco.

Dr. Michael Gould has been appointed the new director of the Texas AgriLife Research and Extension Center in Dallas. He will also retain his current position as director of the Texas AgriLife Research and Extension Center in Weslaco.

He will replace Dr. Frank Gilstrap, who will retire Aug. 31 after five years at the Dallas facility, which houses offices and laboratories of the Texas AgriLife Research and Texas AgriLife Extension Service agencies of the Texas A&M System.

"It is with great pleasure that I announce Dr. Gould's appointment and applaud Dr. Gilstrap's valued tenure as a researcher and lead administrator in our system," said Dr. Craig Nessler, director of AgriLife Research.

Gould has served as director of the Weslaco center since 2006, Nessler said.

"Dr. Gould shares the AgriLife Research and Extension mission of our large urban centers in regions such as the Dallas-Fort Worth area and surrounding cities and counties," Nessler said.

Gould will lead both centers in a unique collaborative relationship, Nessler said.

"The Dallas and Weslaco Centers present multiple opportunities to exploit research program synergies while building stronger, more interactive relationships between and among AgriLife Research scientists and AgriLife Extension personnel," according to a draft action plan prepared by Gould.

The plan also states the two centers have strong, complementary and mutually reinforcing core scientific platforms. They include world-class expertise in molecular biology, plant breeding, water management and conservation issues, urban horticulture, and a host of supporting technologies such as genetic transformation, micro-propagation, salt tolerance and plant physiology.

Several collaborative projects between the centers are already under way, the plan states.

The centers will be linked by state-of-the-art information technology systems, facilitating interactions and collaborations among scientists at the two centers. Day-to-day management will be facilitated by associate directors at each location, according to the plan.

Gould, a biochemist, began his career on the biochemistry and biophysics faculty at the University of Notre Dame. After 10 years with the U.S. Department of Agriculture, he became director of research for the Biotechnology Research and Development Corporation in Illinois.

Gould then served as vice president of research for the U.S. Sugar Corporation in Florida. He was also vice president of NuTech Solutions Inc., a leading producer of complexity science software, which are tools used in the science of studying complex systems with many interactive components.

Gilstrap said in his retirement announcement that he enjoyed his time as director of the Dallas center and that he especially enjoyed "being a small part of the many successes and the professional growth achieved by all here at the Center."

"Five years has elapsed, a lot has been accomplished, and the center now has a strong foundation of success on which to build its future," he said. "With our collective successes, we have positioned the Dallas center for continued growth and greatly added value as we continue helping resolve issues for Texas' urban citizens and the metroplex."

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