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President of Montana State University Will Give Seaman A. Knapp Memorial Lecture in Honor of Extension Service Founder

Media Contact: Jennifer Martin, (202) 720-8188

WASHINGTON, Aug. 27, 2012— Sonny Ramaswamy, director of USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), announced today that Waded Cruzado, president of Montana State University, will present the 2012 Seaman A. Knapp Memorial Lecture in memory of “The Father of Extension,” Nov. 12 in Denver, Colo., at the annual meeting of the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU).

The Seaman A. Knapp Lecture is one of three rotating lectures presented by NIFA and APLU honoring three historic Land-Grant University figures: Seamen A. Knapp, Justin Smith Morrill, and William Henry Hatch. Nominations for this prestigious award are submitted by the Land-Grant University system, stakeholders, foundations, public interest groups, and international organizations.

Knapp’s success as a national leader of the Farm and Home Demonstration System helped bring about the Smith-Lever Act of 1914, which resulted in the creation of the Cooperative Extension Service in every state.

“The Knapp principle of demonstration education involved more than just a new teaching method. It represented a deep insight into the motivation and commitment of people,” said Ramaswamy. “Cruzado’s lecture will remind us of the role Cooperative Extension has played – and will play – to help farmers, ranchers, consumers, families, and communities find science-based solutions to the challenges they face.”

Cruzado became the twelfth president of Montana State University at Bozeman on Jan. 4, 2010, and in less than three years has significantly reshaped the face and future of the state’s first land-grant institution. She is an articulate and inspiring advocate for public universities, which were created through the Morrill Act 150 years ago. Cruzado is a passionate champion of the tripartite mission of research, teaching, and Extension, and the importance of higher education for the prosperity of our nation.

Cruzado earned an undergraduate degree at the University of Puerto Rico (a land-grant university) and master’s and doctoral degrees at the University of Texas–Arlington. She served as interim president at New Mexico State University before accepting her current position.

Through federal funding and leadership for research, education and Extension programs, NIFA focuses on investing in science and solving critical issues impacting people's daily lives and the nation's future. More information is available at www.nifa.usda.gov.

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