In memoriam: Herbert D. Stiles 1942 - 2004

BLACKSBURG, Va., March 8, 2004 – Herbert D. Stiles, professor of horticulture in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Virginia Tech, died Feb. 21. He was 62. Stiles worked at the Southern Piedmont Agricultural Research and Extension Center in Blackstone, Va.

Stiles began his career at the University of Maryland in 1974. There he collaborated with U.S. Department of Agriculture plant breeders to develop disease resistant strawberry varieties. He also devised techniques to improve “virus-free” strawberry-and-raspberry transplant production. He came to Virginia Tech in 1978 and served as extension small-fruits specialist until his retirement in 2002. During his tenure he assisted in the development of new high-quality raspberry varieties as well as new trellising systems to improve efficiently of both raspberry and blackberry production.

Stiles obtained his bachelor and master-of-science degrees from Rutgers University and his Ph.D. degree from the University of Florida. Stiles was a member of the American Society of Horticultural Science and several other professional scientific groups.

Consistently ranked by the National Science Foundation among the top 10 institutions in agricultural research, Virginia Tech’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences offers students the opportunity to learn from some of the world’s leading agricultural scientists. The college’s comprehensive curriculum gives students a balanced education that ranges from food and fiber production to economics to human health. The college is a national leader in incorporating technology, biotechnology, computer applications, and other recent scientific advances into its teaching program.

Founded in 1872 as a land-grant college, Virginia Tech has grown to become the largest university in the Commonwealth of Virginia. Today, Virginia Tech’s eight colleges are dedicated to putting knowledge to work through teaching, research, and outreach activities and to fulfilling its vision to be among the top 30 research universities in the nation. At its 2,600-acre main campus located in Blacksburg and other campus centers in Northern Virginia, Southwest Virginia, Hampton Roads, Richmond, and Roanoke, Virginia Tech enrolls more than 28,000 full- and part-time undergraduate and graduate students from all 50 states and more than 100 countries in 170 academic degree programs.