Meullenet Named Interim Head of Agricultural Experiment Station

Jean-François Muellenet has been named interim director of the Arkansas Agricultural Experiment Station, the research arm of the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture.
Photo by Fred Miller

Jean-François Muellenet has been named interim director of the Arkansas Agricultural Experiment Station, the research arm of the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture.

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark – Jean-François Meullenet has been named interim director of the Arkansas Agricultural Experiment Station of the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture, effective Dec. 11.

Mark Cochran, vice-president-agriculture for the system and head of the Division of Agriculture, on Wednesday announced Meullenet's appointment to succeed Clarence Watson, who retires at year's end. The Agricultural Experiment Station, headquartered in Fayetteville, is the research arm of the Division of Agriculture, and has 13 research centers and stations across Arkansas. The stations' research findings are then transferred to the public through the Cooperative Extension Service.

"Jean-François has the energy and leadership skills to keep the Arkansas Agricultural Experiment Station moving forward during this time of transition," Cochran said. "I'm pleased he has accepted this new challenge and am confident the Experiment Station and its research will continue the growth fostered by Clarence Watson, whose work in public research has been invaluable."

Meullenet has been interim assistant director of the experiment station since July 2016, in addition to serving as head of the Food Science Department and director of the Institute of Food Science and Engineering, posts he's held since 2010.

"I am thrilled to be given the chance to lead research for the Division of Agriculture," Meullenet said. "I am very thankful to Dr. Cochran for giving me this opportunity and to Dr. Watson for the mentoring he has provided me over the past 18 months. I look forward to working with unit heads, faculty and staff to ensure we deliver the most relevant and impactful agricultural research for Arkansas and the nation.

"I know I still have a lot to learn about the breadth of our programs and plan to spend the first few months bettering my understanding of all aspects of our research through departmental and unit visits," he said. "I also look forward to working closely with Bumpers College and Extension as we partner on various projects."

A native of France, Meullenet earned a master of science in Food Engineering from the National Superior School of Agronomy and Food Science in Nancy, and a PhD in Food Science and Technology from the University of Georgia. He joined the Division of Agriculture as an assistant professor of Food Science in 1996. He has published 117 articles in refereed journals and has made more than 150 presentations, in addition to advising numerous master's and doctoral students.

Since 2006, Meullenet has held the Tyson Foods Endowed Distinguished Professorship in Sensory Science and is a 2013 graduate of LEAD21, a national leadership program.

About the Division of Agriculture: The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture's mission is to strengthen agriculture, communities, and families by connecting trusted research to the adoption of best practices. Through the Agricultural Experiment Station and the Cooperative Extension Service, the Division of Agriculture conducts research and extension work within the nation's historic land grant education system.

The Division of Agriculture is one of 20 entities within the University of Arkansas System. It has offices in all 75 counties in Arkansas and faculty on five system campuses. 

The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture offers all its Extension and Research programs and services without regard to race, color, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin, religion, age, disability, marital or veteran status, genetic information, or any other legally protected status, and is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer.

Contacts

Fred L. Miller, science editor
Agricultural Communication Services
479-575-4732, fmiller@uark.edu

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