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Extension staff makes news

Mississippi State University Extension Service has hired three agricultural economists. And, another Extension staff member has earned an honor.

James Barnes and Brian Williams are located on MSU’s main campus in Starkville while Larry Falconer is based out of MSU’s Delta Research and Extension Center in Stoneville.

Williams specializes in commodity marketing of beef cattle, corn, milo, soybeans and wheat as well as value-added management and marketing. He received a bachelor’s degree in natural resources and a master’s degree in agricultural economics from the University of Nebraska in Lincoln. He earned his doctorate in agricultural economics at Oklahoma State University.

Falconer focuses on agricultural finance, marketing, risk management and farm and ranch management. He joined the MSU Extension Service after serving for 24 years as an agricultural economist for Texas A&M in Corpus Christi. He obtained his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Oklahoma State and his doctorate from Texas A&M, all in agricultural economics.

Barnes serves as state specialist in economic and community development. His primary responsibilities relate to agricultural contracting in supply chains and clusters, rural healthcare systems and broadband Internet technologies in rural areas. He earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in agricultural economics at Oklahoma State University. He earned his doctorate in agricultural economics at the University of Missouri.

Fruit crops expert Eric Stafne was honored with the 2012 eXtension Community of Practice Individual Achievement Award based on his leadership as project director for the National Grape Community of Practice. Stafne began his work with the Grape Community of Practice at its inception in 2009 while at Oklahoma State University.

He joined MSU’s Extension Service in November 2011 and works with the state’s fruit crops producers, particularly blueberry growers.

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