Poucher Named UF/IFAS Assistant Vice President

Michael V. Martin mvm@gnv.ifas.ufl.edu, (352) 392-1971
Donald W. Poucher info@gnv.ifas.ufl.edu, (352) 392-0437

GAINESVILLE—Donald W. Poucher has been named assistant vice president for external relations and communications for the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS). In announcing Poucher’s appointment, UF Vice President for Agriculture and Natural Resources Michael V. Martin indicated an ongoing need to accelerate UF/IFAS external and internal relations activities and strategic communications planning.

As assistant vice president, Poucher will be responsible for UF/IFAS public relations, news and internal and external relations activities; federal relations and communications; decision maker education programs; constituent relations and communications; communications strategic planning; internal communications strategy and coordination; crisis communications; and institutional marketing programs, including positioning and identity programs.

He also serves as the UF/IFAS public information officer for the UF’s College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, School of Forest Resources and Conservation, College of Natural Resources and the Environment, the Florida Cooperative Extension Service and the Florida Agricultural Experiment Stations.

Poucher previously served as director of external relations and communications for UF/IFAS and as director of the Communication Services unit.

His service to IFAS and the UF spans a 34-year period during which time he served as a tenured assistant and associate professor. He has held posts of assistant to the president and director of alumni affairs.

Poucher also has served as president and chief executive officer of a commercial radio broadcasting company and vice president of marketing for a bank holding company. A native Floridian, Poucher earned a bachelor of science degree in telecommunications in 1964 and a master of arts in communications and marketing in 1965, both from UF.

While an undergraduate, he earned membership in Florida Blue Key leadership fraternity, the university’s Hall of Fame, Kappa Tau Alpha journalism honor society, Omicron Delta Kappa honorary and Alpha Epsilon Rho telecommunications honorary. A member of Lambda Chi Alpha social fraternity, Poucher also was listed in Who’s Who Among Students in American Colleges and Universities.

In 1974 he was awarded the President’s Medallion for Distinguished Service to UF and was named Outstanding Alumnus by Florida Blue Key in 1975.

He was elected to membership in Gamma Sigma Delta, the honor society of agriculture in 1988. His professional memberships include the Agricultural Communicators in Education (ACE), the Florida Public Relations Association (FPRA) and the Council for Advancement and Support for Education (CASE).

Poucher has published several papers on communications and has served as consultant to such diverse organizations as the International Center for Tropical Agriculture in Cali, Colombia; The PanAmerican School of Agriculture in Zamorano, Honduras; the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), the National Broadcasting Company (NBC), the U.S. Office of Civil Defense, Westinghouse Broadcasting Company, the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. He is a member of the Program Planning Panel for the American Distance Education Consortium (ADEC).

He has served as chair of the UF College of Journalism and Communications Telecommunications Advisory Council and as president and treasurer of the Ag Institute of Florida, a consortium of information officers of agricultural industry groups.

Poucher has received numerous awards, including international awards from ACE for excellence in marketing, television news, television program series and documentaries. He has received the Florida Public Relations Association Golden Image Judge’s Award and an Award of Distinction for video production, including documentaries on UF programs in Africa, Haiti, Honduras and parts of the Caribbean. Poucher also received Golden ARC Awards from the Agricultural Relations Council for excellence in television and magazine agricultural journalism.

In 1996, he received the ACE Award of Excellence for a positioning campaign utilizing both video productions and printed material.