Dual fellowship: WSU director earns national honors for leadership, service in agriculture education, research

Koenig-R-2012-80PULLMAN, Wash. – Rich Koenig of Washington State University is one of 14 soil scientists named 2013 fellows of the Soil Science Society of America (SSSA). Only 0.3 percent of the society’s active and emeritus members are selected for the fellowship.

He is associate dean for the College of Agricultural, Human and Natural Resource Sciences and director of WSU Extension. His research into soil fertility has led to changes in management practices, increased farm profits and a healthier environment, said his SSSA nominator. He has published 79 peer-reviewed and 34 non-peer-reviewed publications.

His leadership in teaching and support of undergraduate and graduate research has made a positive impact on students. His proudest professional accomplishments, he said, have come through working with students in research and extension. He enjoys meeting former students in the field and watching them develop as leaders in their professions.

Koenig also has served the greater community through outreach and extension programs. He has presented more than 100 master gardener classes; taught 284 crop schools; conducted 41 certified crop advisor/in-service trainings and 153 workshops; led 33 days of international in-service training in Armenia and Syria; and served on 35 standing and ad hoc committees.

He has been a member of SSSA for nearly 25 years and was also recently named a 2013 fellow of the American Society of Agronomy.

“I am incredibly honored to be awarded fellow status in both of these societies,” he said. “They are the leading professional organizations in the fields of soil science and agriculture.

“The list of fellows includes people I have admired and respected since first entering graduate school in this field,” he said. “I can only hope to inspire and impact others through this honor.”

As a fellow for the two societies, he will serve as a journal editor, review research articles, mentor scientists and students and continue to serve in leadership roles.

Koenig will accept the 2013 fellowship award at the SSSA awards ceremony on Nov. 4 during the society’s annual gathering in Tampa, Fla.



Rich Koenig, associate dean and director of WSU Extension, richk@wsu.edu

Rachel Webber, WSU CAHNRS Marketing, News and Educational Communications, rcwebber@wsu.edu, 509-335-0837