New leadership team takes shape in Virginia Tech's College of Agriculture and Life Sciences

BLACKSBURG, Va., April 27, 2004 – Sharron Quisenberry, dean of Virginia Tech'sÊ College of Agriculture and Life Sciences is building a new leadership team, preparing to lead the college in "a new age of agriculture."

Tim Mack is now Associate Dean for Information Technology and Distance Education and Michael Bertelsen has taken over as Associate Dean for International Programs replacing S.K DeDatta, who has become Associate Provost for International Affairs.

In addition, the College's Development Office has seen new leadership and additional staff to help the college forge new partnerships across the state and beyond for the future.

Mack joined the Department of Entomology at Virginia Tech in 1994 after 13 years at Auburn University. He served as the head of Department of Entomology at Virginia Tech from 1994 through 2003. Mack also was concurrently the Assistant Dean for Information Technology from 1999 until his promotion in January.

Mack obtained is bachelor's degree from Colgate University, and both his Master's and Ph. D. degrees from the Pennsylvania State University. He began his career in 1981 as an assistant professor of entomology at Auburn University, ultimately reaching the rank of professor. He served as acting head of Auburn's entomology department in 1993.

He is a member of the American Associate for Higher Education, NACTA, and the Entomological Society of America. He has published more than 245 refereed and non-refereed publications, taught more than 4,400 students, and garnered more than $4.2 million in grants during his career.

Bertelsen is a Natural Resource Economist and Information Systems Specialist who has worked in more than 20 countries around the world during his 17 years in international development work. He has served as the Chief of Party for the Agricultural Research and Training Support Project in Burkina Faso and has also provided long-term technical assistance on USAID projects in Morocco, Haiti, and Honduras.

He has broad experience in the design and implementation of computerized information systems and has conducted training courses and workshops in database management, data analysis, geographic information systems (GIS), and microcomputer technology to people of diverse backgrounds in numerous countries

He also has been responsible for developing and coordinating overseas technical assistance opportunities for Virginia Tech faculty; technical assistance for on-going projects; preparing project proposals; and servicing the technical economic needs of the multi-disciplinary staff of the Office of International Research, Education, and Development.

He earned his B.S. and M.S. degrees from the University of Wisconsin and his Ph.D. in Agricultural Economics in 1978 from Virginia Tech.

Max Bales has joined the College as the new Director of Development. Born and raised in Indiana, he is a graduate of Vincenness University and Purdue University with a Bachelor of Science in Agronomy. He was an Indiana Farm Bureau Field representative for seven years. He came to Virginia Tech from Purdue where he served as Agriculture Development Director for six years.

Diane J. Sutphin is the new Assistant Director of Development. In the past few months she and Bales have traveled across the state and visited with thousands of citizens, Virginia Tech Alumni and numerous agricultural organizations and industry leaders. Their work is part of the expanded public-private partnerships of Virginia Tech and agriculture. New partnerships for the experiment stations and Extension offices in all areas of the state are one of the Development Office's goals.

A native of Wythe County, Sutphin graduated from Radford University with a B.S. degree in elementary education and earned her M. S. Degree in curriculum development from Cortland State University (New York). She has taught in Carroll County and for 20 years in elementary and middle schools near Ithaca, N.Y. She has lived and worked in several countries around the world and been involved in Global Seminars and educational development at the local and state levels. Some of her work in curriculum development was adopted by the State Board of Education in New York.