A West Virginia University educator has been honored for his commitment to soil and water conservation. James Thompson, an associate professor of soil science in WVU’s Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design, received the Monongahela Conservation District’s Frank Glover Award at the annual banquet in October.

The award remembers Frank Glover, long-time resident of Morgantown, who was active for more than 40 years in soil and water conservation in West Virginia and was responsible for helping to develop mine reclamation practices.

“I am pleased and proud to receive this award from the Monongahela Conservation District,” Thompson said. “While I never met Mr. Glover, his contributions to conservation education and mine land reclamation are well known. It is a great honor to receive an award that recognizes his legacy in West Virginia. I hope that one day my contributions to soil and water conservation practices and education can approach those of Mr. Glover.”

Thompson joined the faculty of the Davis College’s Division of Plant and Soil Science in 2004. He teaches courses in soil judging, soil survey and land use, and soil genesis and classification. He also coaches WVU’s successful Soils Team and is coordinating this year’s regional and national Collegiate Soils Contests in Morgantown. The regional tourney took place in October, and the nationals are set for March 2012.

Thompson’s work with the soil judging team is highly valued by the Monongahela Conservation District.

“The MCD has been a dedicated sponsor of the WVU Soils Team, donating over $3,000 to the team for travel to the National Collegiate Soils Contest from 2006 to 2011,” Thompson said. “The MCD places a high value on education, and the district supervisors are keen supporters of the educational programs in the Division and the Davis College.”

Thompson also works with the MCD through his interactions with the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service and the West Virginia Association of Professional Soil Scientists.

In addition to his teaching duties, Thompson serves as research and development coordinator of the National Soil Survey Center-Geospatial Research Unit, a joint effort between WVU and the NRCS. The GRU uses advanced technologies to bring soil data and natural resource information to users in a format that is easily accessed, readily understood, consistent, and reliable.

Thompson has co-authored two textbooks with Mark Coyne of the University of Kentucky, Fundamental Soil Science and Math for Soil Scientists, published by Delmar Cengage Learning.

He has been honored by the Monongahela Conservation District before, receiving its District Conservation Educator Award in 2006.

The Monongahela Conservation District is one of 14 overseen by the West Virginia Conservation Agency. The WVCA coordinates statewide conservation efforts and is charged with the conservation of natural resources, flood control, maintenance of dams and reservoirs, maintaining the navigability of rivers and harbors, wildlife conservation, the protection of public lands, and promotion of the health, safety and general welfare of the people.



CONTACT: David Welsh; Davis College of Agriculture, Natural Resources and Design
304.293.2394, dwelsh@wvu.edu

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