Dr. Aaron Patton Receives 2007 Musser Award

The Musser International Turfgrass Foundation has selected Dr. Aaron J. Patton of the University of Arkansas as the recipient of the 2007 Musser Award of Excellence.  The award, which carries a stipend of $20,000, was presented earlier this year at the Golf Industry Show in Anaheim, Calif.

Patton, 29, now serves as an assistant professor and extension turfgrass specialist in Arkansas’ Department of Horticulture (ajpatton@uark.edu).  He earned his doctoral and master’s degrees from Purdue University after completing his undergraduate studies at Iowa State University.

“I’m truly honored to follow in the footsteps of both Professor Musser and a remarkable list of previous recipients,” said Patton.  “This is something I’ll treasure throughout my life and career.”

Patton’s award-winning doctoral research at Purdue focused on the development and use of zoysiagrass.  His dissertation on “Characterizing the Growth and Cold Hardiness of Zoysia spp.” expanding existing understanding of the use of the environmentally friendly, low-maintenance grass for golf courses.  His current work at Arkansas involves development of management techniques that reduce the need for inputs (water, plant nutrients, etc.) without compromising turf quality.

Frank Dobie, the General Manager/Superintendent of The Sharon Golf Club (Ohio) and President of the Musser Foundation Board, said Patton was selected based on his excellence in turfgrass science as well as his work in the field and classroom.  “Aaron has demonstrated a sincere commitment to conducting cutting-edge research while also supporting professionals in his area and educating our next generation of superintendents,” said Dobie.  “That’s the same spirit that Professor Musser exemplified for decades at Penn State.”

The Musser International Turfgrass Foundation is dedicated to fostering turfgrass management as a learned profession. Named in memory of turfgrass scientist H. Burton Musser, The Foundation acknowledges and rewards those individuals who have demonstrated excellence in the doctoral phase of their turfgrass science education and research.

Frank Dobie, President
The Musser International Turfgrass Foundation


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