Doug Munier, UC Cooperative Extension advisor in agronomy, retires in June following a 34-year career split equally between the Northern California offices serving Glenn, Butte and Tehama counties and the southern San Joaquin Valley's Kern County.
Munier always enjoyed working outdoors - both the working and the outdoors, he said. He developed an interest in agriculture as a high school student employed part-time and during the summer on a dryland barley and cattle farm near Banning, Calif.
Munier earned bachelor's degrees in chemistry and biology at UC Irvine in 1975, and a master's degree in soil science at UC Davis in 1977. He joined UC Cooperative Extension in 1979 as the farm advisor for field crops, soils and irrigation in Kern County.
The opportunity to help farmers and pest control advisers with crop production and help consumers by contributing to a low cost and healthy food supply drew him to the UCCE career. He attributes his success over the years to the collaborative relationships he developed with others.
"I couldn't have done this without the help of many progressive farmers, PCAs and industry organizations," Munier said. "I'm also thankful for all of the support from my UC colleagues."
The specialist/advisor team approach was at its best for him, he said, in the 1990s when he was a part of the statewide cotton extension team under former UCCE cotton specialist Tom Kerby.
"Tom was a very effective leader who understood the importance of sharing ideas, resources and credit with everyone on the team," Munier said.
Over his 34-year career, Munier was a part of some very useful and practical research and extension developments including: cotton growth regulator use on variable height cotton, Temik pesticide soil applications for nematode control, analyzing the accuracy of cotton degree-day forecasting, controlling wheat stripe rust disease with varietal resistance and fungicide applications, canola seed dormancy in volunteer plants, and identifying the effectiveness of a new herbicide, Alion, for Roundup-resistant ryegrass control.
In retirement, Munier said he looks forward to volunteering and spending more time with his wife, Patti, and his children and grandchildren. He also hopes to do some part-time work where he can continue to contribute to agricultural production.
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