Associate Dean and Director of Global Programs
Tom Thompson is Associate Dean and Director of International Programs in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. Thompson earned a bachelor’s degree in agronomy from Abilene Christian University, a master’s degree in soil chemistry and fertility from Texas A&M, and a doctorate in soil chemistry from Iowa State University. As head of the Department of Crop and Soil Environmental Sciences (2011-16), he led a department with 25 faculty members, 300 undergraduate and graduate students, and a research portfolio of more than $5 million per year. Prior to coming to Virginia Tech, Thompson was chairman of the Department of Plant and Soil Science at Texas Tech University from 2006 to 2011. He was professor and extension specialist at the University of Arizona from 1991 to 2006.
Thompson is an agronomist and soil scientist, and his career has been characterized by international engagement. In 2004 he took a sabbatical leave in Israel and has had scientific collaborations with colleagues at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Ben-Gurion University, and Israel’s Agricultural Research Organization. His recent research and outreach have focused on the adoption of conservation agriculture practices in smallholder farming systems in the Caribbean in Haiti and in Africa in Senegal. He has mentored graduate students from Africa, Asia, and Central and South America. Thompson has published more than 50 refereed journal articles and garnered more than $9.7 million in extramural funding.
Thompson is a Fellow of the American Society of Agronomy, the Soil Science Society of America, and the Food Systems Leadership Institute. He was associate and technical editor for the Soil Science Society of America Journal for more than a decade.
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