Interim Director to Change at Iowa State's Leopold Center

March 4th, 2011

AMES, Iowa — Lois Wright Morton is stepping down as interim director of Iowa State University's Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture to lead a regional research project on climate and agriculture.

On a short-term basis, Mark Honeyman, a professor of animal science, will assume the responsibilities of interim director of the center, effective March 7.

Morton, professor of sociology, is lead researcher on a new $20 million project funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The project, involving 42 scientists from nine land-grant universities and two federal laboratories, will examine the effects of climate variability on the sustainability of Midwest corn production. The ISU project was one of three major national awards in climate research announced in February by the USDA.

Honeyman has coordinated ISU's Research and Demonstration Farm network for 26 years. He served on the original task force that helped define the Leopold Center in the 1980s. He has led many center-funded projects and interdisciplinary teams, primarily related to alternative livestock production systems and pork niche markets. His research often examines the role of livestock to enhance the sustainability of Iowa's agricultural systems and rural communities. Honeyman recently was named associate director of ISU's BioCentury Research Farm. In 2008 he led the creation of the university's compost facility, which turns campus and farm wastes into compost and amended soil.


Brian Meyer, Agriculture and Life Sciences Communications, (515) 294-5616,