Carrillo to oversee NMSU's Las Cruces lands, farm operations
New Mexico State University's Agricultural Experiment Station lands located on and near the Las Cruces campus are under new management. In October, Tracey Carrillo was named assistant director of campus farm operations, a new position.
Carrillo will oversee and coordinate land use and assist faculty who are conducting research at the Leyendecker Plant Science Research Center, the Fabian Garcia Science Center and other College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences' Agricultural Experiment Station lands near campus, including those grazed by NMSU livestock. He also will continue as director of NMSU's Seed Certification Program.
"Tracey will be a great asset for researchers in this position," said Steven Loring, AES associate director. "Although this is an administrative position, he has extensive experience conducting research at the campus farms. Tracey can anticipate faculty research needs and knows how to meet those needs for research conducted on farm lands."
In his 18 years as a senior research scientist, Carrillo, who earned his doctorate in agronomy and master's degree in agricultural biology at NMSU, worked on numerous projects at Leyendecker and Fabian Garcia, before becoming director of the Seed Certification Program in 2007.
To assign land for research projects and manage overall farm land use, Carrillo will consult with an executive advisory committee comprising academic department heads and faculty. He also will coordinate the work of Leyendecker and Fabian Garcia farm managers and crews and oversee budgets and the operations of the physical plant, personnel safety and EPA compliance on AES lands.
"The farm managers at Leyendecker and Fabian Garcia will continue to manage the day-to-day operations on the farms," Carrillo said. "I will oversee and coordinate larger issues associated with those centers."
This will mean looking at long-term improvements for the AES lands he now oversees. "One of my goals is to make Leyendecker totally energy self-sufficient using renewable energy sources, perhaps solar- and wind-powered generators, with Leyendecker serving as the flagship example for other AES sites," Carrillo said.
"One of the biggest costs to researchers is energy. If we can offset that expense, it will reduce the costs of doing research," he said.
Carrillo will work closely with faculty conducting research at the farms, providing assistance from a project's beginning to its completion.
"I will be available to help faculty with experimental design, grants and funding, allocation of lands and other special needs," he said.
And he will be the initial contact for anyone with questions about using these lands.
"If the city has questions or needs for utility repairs or anyone has other questions or issues involving AES lands near campus, Tracey will be the initial contact for them," Loring said.
Carrillo's appointment covers only AES lands on or near the Las Cruces campus; it does not include other AES centers around the state.