ALTON – National Great Rivers Research and Education Center (NGRREC℠) Watershed Scientist John Sloan was recently awarded the Vice Chancellor’s Award in Excellence from Texas A&M AgriLife for his work with the Earth-Kind research and extension team.
Earth-Kind is a concept for managing landscapes using practices that are less wasteful and harmful to natural resources. The research-based landscaping techniques provide garden and landscape enjoyment while preserving and protecting the environment.
“I was surprised and honored to receive the Vice Chancellor’s Award in Excellence because it has been a couple of years since I left Texas A&M University to join the National Great Rivers Research and Education Center,” Sloan said. “However, I have continued to help the Earth-Kind Rose Team in an advisory role, and I am happy that they continue to see me as a key member of the team.”
The objective of Earth-Kind landscaping is to combine the best of organic and traditional gardening and landscaping principles to create a horticultural system based on real world effectiveness and environmental responsibility. Earth-Kind landscaping encourages practices that include landscape water conservation, reduction of fertilizer and pesticide use, landscaping for energy conservation, and reduction of landscape wastes entering landfills.
Before joining NGRREC℠ in 2012, Sloan was an associate professor of environmental soil science at Texas AgriLife Research and Extension Center. He earned his bachelor’s degree in agricultural sciences from the University of Illinois, his master’s degree in soil science from Texas A&M University and his doctorate in soil chemistry from Oklahoma State University.
Currently, Sloan serves as a member of the NGRREC℠ research team, which deals with water resource issues in the Upper Mississippi River Basin. His research program focuses on water quality issues related to sediments, nutrients, pesticides, pharmaceuticals and other chemicals that result from agriculture and urbanization activities.
The National Great Rivers Research and Education Center is a partnership of Lewis and Clark Community College, the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and the Prairie Research Institute’s Illinois Natural History Survey. NGRREC℠ aspires to be a leader in scholarly research, education and outreach related to the interconnectedness of big rivers, their floodplains and watersheds, and the people who use them.