MSU College of Forest Resources announces new leadership


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Posted: 1/26/2009


The Mississippi State forestry's department head is being promoted to a new administrative role in the university's College of Forest Resources.

James P. "Jim" Shepard now is associate director of research for the Forest and Wildlife Research Center and Mississippi Water Resources Research Institute.

Shepard, an MSU alumnus, joined the faculty in 2005 after 15 years with the Florida-based National Council for Air and Stream Improvement. He holds the academic rank of professor of forestry.

"Dr. Shepard has done an outstanding job as department head," said college Dean George M. Hopper. "He has a wealth of research planning and project management experience, including a vast knowledge of hydrology and wetlands, which will serve the research center and water institute well in the future."

Shepard held several positions at NCASI, including manager of the sustainable forestry and forest wetlands programs, and forest environmental scientist. He also has served as a research scientist with the State University of New York's College of Environmental Science and Forestry and a courtesy associate professor at the University of Florida.

Shepard's bachelor and doctoral degrees from MSU are in forestry and forest soils, respectively. He also completed a master's in tree physiology at Purdue University.

Professor Andrew Ezell is serving as the forestry department's interim head. A national search will be conducted to fill the vacant head position.

The Forest and Wildlife Research Center was established by the Mississippi Legislature with the passage of the 1994 Renewable Natural Resources Research Act. Its missions involve state and regional research and technical assistance programs relevant to the efficient management and utilization of forest, wildlife and fisheries. FWRC scientists also focus on the protection and enhancement of natural environments associated with these resources.

Established in 1964 and part of the Forest and Wildlife Research Center since 2006, the Mississippi Water Resources Research Institute is a statewide center of expertise in water and its associated land-use.

Dean Hopper is director for both the center and institute.

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