Dean Pringle joins the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) as director of the North Florida Research and Education Center (NFREC). He starts Jan. 3.
As the new director, Pringle will lead faculty, staff and students at its main location in Quincy, as well as other sites in Marianna and Live Oak. The center celebrated its 100th anniversary in 2021, with its current research ranging from a biofuel cover crop to innovations for row crop producers to cattle nutrition and much more.
The new role is a bit of a homecoming for the Florida native, who was raised on his family’s farm in Immokalee and went on to earn bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Florida’s animal sciences department in the UF/IFAS College of Agricultural and Life Sciences.
“Growing up in a rural South Florida town, I gained an early appreciation for agriculture’s importance to our state,” Pringle said. “Now, as I join the NFREC, I look forward to rolling up my sleeves and working to promote its faculty, staff and students while engaging our stakeholders as we work together to ensure that North Florida remains a diverse and robust agricultural community that appreciates the balance between protecting our natural resources and growing our food, fiber and green industries.”
Pringle comes to UF/IFAS from the University of Georgia, where he has spent his career starting as a postdoctoral researcher there in 1993. Most recently, he was a professor of animal and dairy science.
Scott Angle, UF senior vice president for agriculture and natural resources and leader of UF/IFAS, highlighted Pringle’s vision to strengthen relationships with the center’s stakeholders and to bolster the connection between research and Extension in service to their needs.
“Producers in each region of our state face their own unique challenges, and North Florida is no exception,” Angle said. “Our NFREC faculty are already conducting innovative, integral research into those challenges. I believe Dr. Pringle will lead this center in a way that unites our teaching, research and Extension missions, contributing overall to better outcomes for producers throughout North Florida.”