New Year - New Faces February 27, 2015

New Year - New Faces

By Pat Gross, Director
March 5, 2008

The New Year brings some changes in the Southwest Region with the hiring of Dr. Jim Baird at UC Riverside and Brian Whitlark with the USGA Green Section.

Dr. Jim Baird joined the Department of Botany and Plant Sciences at the University of California, Riverside on January 1, 2008. Jim is the new assistant cooperative extension specialist filling the vacancy left after the retirement of Dr. Vic Gibeault. Dr. Baird joins an excellent turf team at the University of California with Steve Cockerham, Dr. Ali Harivandi, Dr. Frank Wong, Dr. Robert Green, and a great group of scientists and turfgrass extension specialists throughout the state of California.

Dr. Baird received his undergraduate degree from Colorado State University and his M.S. and Ph.D. from Auburn University. From 1993 to 1997, Jim was an assistant professor of turfgrass research and teaching in the Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture at Oklahoma State University. He moved to the faculty at Michigan State University in 1997 and then joined the USGA Green Section staff in 2000. Dr. Baird brings with him a wide range of academic and practical experience in the golf industry to his new position at UC Riverside.

Brian Whitlark joined the Southwest Region Green Section team on February 19, 2008. Brian has a strong background in soil and water issues with B.S and M.S. degrees from the Department of Soil, Water and Environmental Science at the University of Arizona, Tucson. He was formerly the assistant golf course superintendent at Talking Stick Golf Club in Scottsdale, Arizona in addition to working for IAS Laboratories and Target Specialty Products. Brian will be based in Phoenix, Arizona and assist with Turf Advisory Service visits in Arizona, Nevada, and California.

Upcoming Regional Conferences - Please mark your calendars and plan to attend one of the upcoming USGA Regional Conferences in your area:

  • Monday, March 10 - USGA/ NCGA Conference. Claremont Country Club, Oakland, CA. Contact: Mike McCullough (831) 625-4653.
  • Tuesday, March 11 - Northern Nevada Conference. The Resort at Red Hawk, Sparks, NV. Contact: Denise Covell (714) 542-5766.
  • Monday, March 17 - Arizona Conference. Arizona Country Club, Phoenix, AZ. Contact: Denise Covell (714) 542-5766.

Source: Pat Gross.