Published on 09/04/03

Avery to deliver 2003 D.W. Brooks Lecture

By Faith Peppers
University of Georgia

Dennis Avery, director of the Center for Global Food Issues at the Hudson Institute, will deliver the 2003 D.W. Brooks Lecture Oct. 6 in Athens, Ga.

Avery will speak on the topic, "Has America Already Lost High- Yield Agriculture?" The annual lecture will be at 11 a.m. on the University of Georgia campus, in the Mahler Auditorium in the Georgia Center for Continuing Education.

A former agricultural analyst for the U.S. Department of State, Avery was responsible for assessing the foreign-policy implications of food and farming developments worldwide. He is a senior fellow at the Hudson Institute, a research and policy think tank in Indianapolis.

At the Hudson, Avery monitors developments in world food production, farm product demand, the safety and security of food supplies and the sustainability of world agriculture.

As a staff member of the President's National Advisory Commission on Food and Fiber, he wrote the commission's landmark report, "Food and Fiber for the Future."

Avery studied agricultural economics at Michigan State University and the University of Wisconsin. He holds awards for outstanding performance from three government agencies and was awarded the National Intelligence Medal of Achievement in 1983.

He is the author of "Global Food Progress 1991" and "Saving the Planet with Pesticides and Plastic: The Environmental Triumph of High-Yield Farming."

He is also the editor of Global Food Quarterly, the newsletter of the CGFI, and writes a weekly column for The BridgeNews Forum. Avery has been quoted in publications ranging from Time and The Washington Post to The Farm Journal. Avery's article, "What's Wrong with Global Warming?" was published in the August 1999 issue of Reader's Digest.

Avery has testified before Congress and has appeared on most of the nation's major television networks, including a program discussing the bacterial dangers of organic foods on ABC's 20/20.

Recognizing excellence

His lecture will follow the presentation of this year's Brooks Awards winners. The awards are given annually to UGA College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences faculty members who excel in teaching, research, extension and public service.

The teaching award was established in 1981 to recognize excellence in the teaching program of the CAES. In 1983, the awards expanded to include research, extension and county extension programs. An award for international agriculture was added in 1988 and is given in alternate years.

The D.W. Brooks Faculty Awards for Excellence include a framed certificate and a $5,000 cash award. The lecture and awards are named for the late D.W. Brooks, founder and chairman emeritus of Gold Kist, Inc.

Brooks was an advisor to seven U.S. presidents on agriculture and trade issues. He started Cotton States Mutual Insurance Companies in 1941 to provide farmers with insurance.

His many honors for contributions to agriculture include being the first inductee into the UGA Agricultural Hall of Fame, earning the Distinguished Agribusiness Award from the Georgia Agribusiness Council and being named Progressive Farmer magazine's "Man of the Year in Agriculture in the South."

The CAES sponsors the annual lecture series in his memory.

Faith Peppers is the director of public affairs with the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.