Contact: Jack Bailey

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INSTITUTE, W.Va. – West Virginia State University Vice President for Research and Public Service Dr. Orlando F. McMeans is the Association of Research Directors (ARD) recipient of the 2017 Leadership Award from the Experiment Station Committee on Organization and Policy (ESCOP), a division of the national Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities (APLU).

ESCOP is the executive body of APLU’s Experiment Station Section (ESS) Board on Agriculture Assembly, and handles continuing business, organization and policy issues on behalf of the state agricultural experiment station directors.

“The research leadership Dr. McMeans provides on both the regional and national levels is commendable, and this award from his peers in the land-grant system is truly deserved,” WVSU President Dr. Anthony L. Jenkins said. “Under his leadership, the research portfolio at WVSU has significantly expanded and diversified. During his tenure, externally sponsored funding has also increased from less than $1 million to more than $16 million annually, which has translated into more than $148 million for the University and the State.”

McMeans oversees WVSU’s Agricultural and Environmental Research Station, which comprises a variety of federally supported research endeavors dealing with diverse research areas including plant genomics, aquaculture, energy, water quality, horticulture and alternative agriculture systems and plant breeding. He served as co-chair of the 2017 ARD Research Symposium in Atlanta, Ga., biannual gathering of research scientists and students from throughout the 1890 Land-Grant University System.

With a membership of 237 public research universities, land-grant institutions, state university systems and affiliated organizations, APLU’s agenda is built on the three pillars of increasing degree completion and academic success, advancing scientific research, and expanding engagement. The association’s work is furthered by an advocacy arm that works with Congress and the administration, as well as the media, to advance federal policies that strengthen public universities and benefit the students they serve.

McMeans will receive the Leadership Award during the APLU Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C., in November.

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West Virginia State University is a public, land grant, historically black university, which has evolved into a fully accessible, racially integrated, and multigenerational institution, located in Institute, W.Va. As a “living laboratory of human relations,” the university is a community of students, staff, and faculty committed to academic growth, service and preservation of the racial and cultural diversity of the institution. Its mission is to meet the higher education and economic development needs of the state and region through innovative teaching and applied research.