Dr. Joe Outlaw, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service economist and co-director of the Agricultural and Food Policy Center at Texas A&M University, recently received the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Southern Agricultural Economics Association.
Outlaw was recognized for his continuous service to southern agriculture in agricultural policy education and research since 1998, according to the award nomination.
He has held numerous positions with AgriLife Extension, including program specialist, state crop farm management specialist, district Extension specialist, and developer and director of the Farm Assistance program.
He is best known for his efforts to educate farmers, legislators, agribusinesses and his AgriLife Extension colleagues on farm policy changes and how they will affect U.S. agriculture. He has advised Congress and their staff on U.S. policy and his objective analysis over the past 25 years has resulted in stronger and smarter U.S. farm policy, the nomination stated.
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Outlaw’s educational materials on agricultural policy are shared widely, and he has adopted the latest technology to educate producers. Most notable is the development of online decision aids using the Internet to educate farmers and AgriLife Extension policy educators, according to the award material. He also utilizes YouTube and Twitter for information delivery.
U.S. House Agriculture Committee chairman Michael Conaway and ranking member Collin Peterson, wrote in a nomination letter, “While the policy process is often contentious, Dr. Outlaw has navigated that process artfully through the years, managing to maintain his objectivity and the respect of countless members of Congress on both sides of the aisle. In fact, we are writing this letter in recognition of the bipartisan support and respect he commands. Most recently, his ability to explain unique risks that various crops and regions face was instrumental in developing the farm policy choices offered to producers in the 2014 farm bill, many of which provide risk management tools that will be vital to agricultural producers going forward.
“Dr. Outlaw has been on the forefront of educating producers, advising members of Congress and their staff, and informing the policy process for much of the last 25 years. He is a trusted adviser, and his contributions have helped to ensure we have sound farm policy and that our nation’s farmers are equipped to utilize those policies.”
Outlaw, a native of Devine, received his bachelor’s, master’s and Ph.D. degrees in agricultural economics from Texas A&M University.