Sep 26, 2022
FFVA honors UF weed researcher for management programs

AMELIA ISLAND, Fla. — The Florida Fruit & Vegetable Association (FFVA) named University of Florida (UF) weed scientist Nathan Boyd its 2022 Researcher of the Year.

Boyd is a professor of horticulture and weed science and associate center director at the UF Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences’ Gulf Coast Research and Education Center (GCREC) in Wimauma, Florida.

The FFVA presented the award to Boyd on Sept. 13, during its annual convention on Amelia Island, Florida.

Boyd’s research has focused on the development of integrated weed management programs for small fruits and vegetable crops. He has helped improve the industry’s understanding of weed biology.

“Through his Extension work and research on integrated weed management programs, Dr. Nathan Boyd has made advancements resulting in major impacts to Florida agriculture,” said FFVA Research Committee Chair Elizabeth Malek, crop information supervisor for Lipman Family Farms, based in Immokalee, Florida.

Boyd developed “an excellent reputation for himself among his colleagues and growers across the state, making him an asset to the industry,” Malek said in presenting the award. “Dr. Boyd is highly deserving of this prestigious award.”

Boyd said the honor would not be possible without the many people who helped him, including grad students and post-doctoral associates, technicians and the GCREC faculty which allowed him to pursue his sometimes “crazy” ideas.

“This is indeed a great honor, especially more so who it comes from, the FFVA and the industry it represents, makes it mean so much more,” Boyd said. “I’ve grown over the last 10 years to really love the agricultural industry here in Florida and most of all, the people who are involved in it.”

Malek said people who nominated Boyd described him as “an incredibly gifted researcher” and credited him with developing strong relationships with growers and industry stakeholders, which helps anticipate emerging issues.

“He’s also an effective communicator because he has the unique ability to be able to translate highly scientific and technical results in a way that is well received by growers,” Malek said.

Joining UF in 2012, Boyd has published more than 70 online Extension documents and 15 fact sheets focusing on weed management with herbicides. He has also conducted more than 25 on-farm trials to demonstrate herbicide efficacy for Florida growers.

Photo: University of Florida weed scientist Nathan Boyd receives the Florida Fruit & Vegetable Association’s Researcher of the Year Award by FFVA Research Committee Chair Elizabeth Malek of Lipman Family Farms.  Photo Doug Ohlemeier.

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