Schlegel Honored at SICNA

National Sorghum Producers presented Alan Schlegel, Ph.D., the award for Outstanding Achievement in Sorghum Improvement at the biennial Sorghum Improvement Conference of North America in March 28-30 in Dallas, Texas.

By Haleigh Erramouspe

The biennial Sorghum Improvement Conference of North America (SICNA) returned in person March 28-30 in Dallas, Texas. The conference, themed Sorghum: Sustainable in a Changing World, included keynote addresses on sustainability and the future of the industry, plus research sessions on breeding, biotechnology, agronomy, physiology, entomology, pathology, utilization and tech transfer. There were also awards presented for general research poster and student poster and oral competitions, plus the Outstanding Achievement in Sorghum Improvement award. Close to 100 researchers, students and industry leaders attended the event.

National Sorghum Producers presented Alan Schlegel, Ph.D., the award for Outstanding Achievement in Sorghum Improvement for providing exemplary service and going beyond expectations in his achievements for the sorghum industry. Schlegel is a professor emeritus at the Kansas State University Southwest Research-Extension Center in Tribune, Kansas, where he served in various capacities for more than 40 years. His research has focused on nutrient and water management research in dryland and irrigated systems and integration of tillage, water and crop management for more efficient cropping systems.

“There is not an individual in the U.S. who has done more work on sorghum cropping systems than Alan,” NSP CEO Tim Lust said. “Sorghum is The Resource Conserving Crop™, and Alan’s work on tillage and fertility management are cornerstones of efforts to promote this aspect of the crop to end-users and anyone interested in promoting agricultural sustainability. National Sorghum Producers is pleased to honor him with this prestigious award.”

Schlegel published more than 100 peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters in more than 100 trade and technical publications and 300 experiment station and extension publications. He also served in multiple editorial and board leadership positions throughout his tenure in the research community.

The award for Outstanding Achievement in Sorghum Improvement was first presented in 1961. Recipients include, among others, the forefathers of the modern hybrid sorghum industry. As of today, more than 60 individuals have received this award. Visit SorghumGrowers. com/recognition to view past award recipients.

National Sorghum Producers also awarded four students for their outstanding research presentations. The winner of the Student Poster Presentation was Mitchell Kent from Texas A&M University on “Use of Genomic Prediction to Screen Sorghum B-Lines.

The winners of the Student Oral Presentations were:

  • First place: Noah Winans,Texas A&M University with “Evaluating Introgression Sorghum Material while Exploring Genomic Selection as a Screening Method”
  • Second place: Troy J. Ostmeyer, Kansas State University with “Split Application of Nitrogen Impacts Grain Sorghum Yield, Quality, and Amino Acid Composition”
  • Third place: Fabian Leon Texas A&M University with “Historical Multi-environmental Trials Reveal Elite Grain Sorghum Hybrid Trends from 1970-2021”

SICNA strives every year to promote communication and collaboration in research and development among researchers and stakeholders in cooperation with universities, research centers, public institutions and private entities. It links scientists and researchers with sorghum producers and industry representatives to help drive innovation and discovery in response to the industry’s challenges and opportunities.


This story originally appeared in the Spring 2022 Issue of Sorghum Grower magazine.