“We have so many outstanding people working for the A&M System and these awards are a way to honor the special men and women for all that they do for the people of Texas,” said John Sharp, chancellor of the A&M System.
For 32 years, George L. Gonzales, formerly of Bee County, has served with pride and enthusiasm as a county-based extension educator. He is renowned for an ambitious, grassroots approach to extension work, yielding many successful educational programs, result and applied research demonstrations, and other community-based initiatives to improve the quality of life in Texas.
Gonzales began his career in 1980 as an assistant county extension agent in Bee County. He became the county extension agent in Webb County in 1984. With 11 different extension specialists, he has co-authored 63 research demonstration reports. He earned the highest rank (Level IV) for an AgriLife Extension agent, serves as the county coordinator in Webb County and, for many years, has helped to train and instill the highest standards in other agents, who have moved on to serve across the state and at every level of the organization.
“George Gonzales has a record of performance and achievement as long as it is impressive. He’s an accomplished educator and media communicator…who is synonymous with agriculture in this part of the state and has earned the respect of local elected officials, including Sen. Zaffirini, Rep. Raymond and numerous county judges. He has the single most diverse program in the district, built on the strongest program development committees and advisory board…making him highly respected and effective in all that he does,” said Dr. Ruben Saldaña, district extension administrator, Texas AgriLife Extension Service, Weslaco.
Gonzales’ achievements exemplify the benefits of the extension model-delivering research and science-based knowledge from the land-grant university system directly to the people, at a local level. For extension education, Gonzales is himself a result demonstration, proving the profound differences a county-based educator can make in the world that matters most to the people he serves.
To date, 166 A&M System faculty members have been recognized with the Regents Professor Award and 96 agency professionals have received the Regents Fellow Service Award.
Gonzales will be receiving this distinguished award at a reception and dinner hosted by the Texas A&M Board of Regents on Wednesday, Jan. 30, 2013, at Texas A&M University in College Station.