Industry News

McKenzie wins prestigious award

McKenzie wins prestigious award

For his long and productive period working to improve California rice varieties, Rice Experiment Station Director Kent McKenzie has received a major honor.   At the 38th Rice Technical Working Group meeting in Alabama, Dr. McKenzie received the distinguished service award today.

Kent started his career in Arkansas, then moved to Louisiana, where he served as an Associate Professor and Plant Breeder for several years. He was hired at a Plant Breeder at the California Rice Experiment Station in 1988. He was promoted to Director in 2000 and has served in that capacity ever since.

In his time as Director, the California Cooperative Rice Research Foundation has released 17 varieties, with several more release proposals expected in the near future.

Congratulations Kent, and thank you for your decades of service to California rice! 

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Lorenzo Pope

Lorenzo Pope

Longtime industry leader Lorenzo Pope passed on March 25, 2024. Dr. Pope was known as a plant breeder and executive at Rice Researchers. He served for decades on the California Rice Commission Board of Directors and many of its committees, including the Rice Promotion Board. In 2015, the California Rice Research Board presented Dr. Pope with the California Rice Industry Award. Ever an educator to others and always willing to take a phone call, lend a hand or attend any rice meeting, Lorenzo will be remembered as a giant in our industry.

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