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Job ID: 135023

Director, Division of Plant Sciences
University of Missouri-Columbia

Date Posted Dec. 13, 2019
Title Director, Division of Plant Sciences
University University of Missouri-Columbia
Columbia, MO, United States
Department College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources
Application Deadline Feb. 1, 2020
Position Start Date Fall 2020
  • Department Head/Head/Chair
    Associate Professor
  • Agronomy/Plant & Soil Sciences

The University of Missouri (MU) invites nominations and applications for Professor or Associate Professor and Director of the Division of Plant Sciences (DPS) within the College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources (CAFNR).

Responsibilities: The Director is responsible for leadership of all aspects of the Division. We seek a dynamic individual who will provide vision, leadership and guidance for academic, research, and Extension programs; recruit world-class faculty, high-caliber students and staff; develop resources to strengthen the long-term viability, efficiency, and effectiveness of DPS research, teaching, and Extension programs; promote collaborative research within the DPS and across MU; promote and foster cooperation across CAFNR and other colleges on campus; administer the divisional budget; support/lead external development opportunities; be an advocate for the DPS both on and off campus; and mentor faculty members throughout their careers.

Minimum Qualifications: An earned doctorate in an appropriate plant science discipline.

Preferred Qualifications: Prior administrative or leadership experience; an established record of excellence in teaching, Extension or research in an area of divisional strength; demonstrated effective leadership; a commitment to diversity and inclusion; and a strong record of collaboration; an understanding and commitment to the mission of a comprehensive, land-grant university; experience with external stakeholders at state, national and international levels; commitment to shared governance, collegiality, and continual professional development for faculty and staff; commitment to visioning and strategic planning; desire to lead development activities and cultivate alumni and donor relations; passionate about improving education for all students; a transparent, open-minded, respectful and approachable leadership style; familiarity with national trends in undergraduate and graduate plant science education; and demonstrated understanding of modern agricultural practices.

About MU, CAFNR, and the DPS: MU, the flagship institution in the University of Missouri System, has over 30,000 undergraduate and graduate students. Located midway between St. Louis and Kansas City, Columbia is a vibrant small city consistently ranked among the top places to live in the United States.

The College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources strives to create a healthier world. As a critical college in a land-grant institution, we pioneer visionary and transformative solutions for agriculture, food and natural resources. Our agriculture and Extension goal is to double the economic value of agriculture in Missouri by 2030 while sustaining our natural resources. We pursue student success, advance research and innovation, empower Missourians, cultivate a diverse and inclusive community, and champion global citizenship and engagement. See our Strategic Plan, "Drive to Distinction."

The Division of Plant Sciences provides leadership for plant, insect and microbe-based research, education, and Extension programs in the College. The Division is the primary academic program in the state to address issues related to plant production, plant protection and plant biology from the laboratory to the field. We are at the national and international forefront of disciplinary and interdisciplinary research, Extension and education in applied and basic aspects of plant sciences. The faculty contribute significantly to the Interdisciplinary Plant Group, a community of MU faculty, students, postdoctoral fellows, and professionals who pursue novel, creative, and transformative ideas in the field of plant biology. The University of Missouri provides access to effective and efficient on- and off-campus research facilities to plant sciences faculty, staff and students.

Division faculty members contribute to advances in conventional, sustainable and alternative production systems, plant biology, genetics and breeding, plant protection and pest management, plant-insect/pathogen interactions, plant-soil relationships and environmental quality. Our graduate program ranks among the top 20 programs nationally with more than 60 students. It provides a strong foundation in fundamental plant sciences, promotes critical-thinking skills, provides flexibility for specialized training and offers opportunities for thesis work with more than 37 prominent faculty members. Our undergraduate program offers training in crop management, horticultural science and design, and plant breeding and biotechnology. We provide a strong foundation for student success with over 90% of students placed in a career or graduate/professional school within six months of graduation.

Application: To apply for this position, please submit the following documents by email to (1) cover letter; (2) curriculum vitae; (3) 2-page narrative of administrative and leadership philosophy, including a statement describing efforts to increase diversity and inclusion; (4) 1-page research philosophy; (5) 1-page Extension philosophy; (6) 1-page teaching philosophy; and (7) names and contact information of four references (the candidate will be notified prior to references being contacted by the Search Committee).

We anticipate the appointment will begin Fall 2020. Review of applications will begin immediately and will continue until the position is filled. For full consideration, applicant materials should be received by February 1, 2020. For additional information about the position, please contact Dr. Bill Lamberson, Chair of the Search Committee (

Benefit Eligibility: This position is eligible for University benefits. The University offers a comprehensive benefits package, including medical, dental and vision plans, retirement, and educational fee discounts. For additional information on University benefits, please visit the Faculty & Staff Benefits website at

  • The University of Missouri is fully committed to achieving the goal of a diverse and inclusive academic community of faculty, staff and students. We seek individuals who are committed to this goal and our core campus values of respect, responsibility, discovery and excellence. The University of Missouri is an Equal Opportunity/Access/Affirmative Action/Pro Disabled & Veteran Employer. To request ADA accommodations, please contact our ADA Coordinator at (573) 884-7278 (V/TTY). Women and minorities are encouraged to apply.

Please reference in your cover letter when
applying for or inquiring about this job announcement.

Contact Information

  • Teresa L. Davis
    Dean's Office, College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources
    University of Missouri-Columbia
    710 Hitt Street
    Columbia, MO 65201
  • 5738823752


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