Dr. Hawkins, Assistant Director Purdue Agricultural Centers and Project Coordinator, works with staff members at the eight Purdue Agricultural Centers (PACs) across the state to facilitate research and extension activities at the PACs. Researchers from across Purdue’s eleven agricultural disciplines use the PACs for field studies to test their research ideas in field trials and under real-world conditions. At any given time, there are more than 445 independent studies underway across these sites. The PACs also serve as a revenue source for the college through the production of commodity crops such as corn, soybean, wheat, and animals such as beef cattle and meat goats. Hawkins is responsible for assisting PAC staff in securing inputs and equipment, planning infrastructure and building related activities, and budgeting and marketing sales of commodity crops and animals.
Hawkins has been a champion of precision agriculture long before the term was common-place. Under his guidance, he was instrumental in instituting multiple precision ag practices including data collection, the adaptation of GPS to small plot equipment, the use of GPS tools in plot layout and data management and storage. He plays a critical extension role with regard to development and dissemination of safety based information for farmers in cooperation with the Purdue Pesticide Program.
He also coordinates construction and renovation projects for the College of Agriculture, on and off campus. Dr. Hawkins manages upwards of 150+ projects ongoing valued at $10M. He has assisted with the College of Agriculture Master Plan and the subsequent building and master planning for Animal Sciences, Forestry and Natural Resources, and Agricultural and Biological Engineering. He currently serves on the steering committee for the Plant Sciences Initiative, a component of the Big Moves at Purdue. He has served on several committees on campus that have developed recommendations for campus wide services, i.e. Transportation and Research Machine Services, and is a member of the Student Farm Advisory Committee.
Hawkins has also participated with International Programs in Agriculture (IPIA) at Purdue in on-site assessments of potential partners in Kenya, Uganda, and South Sudan. Before committing to a long-term relationship with another entity engaged in agricultural research and education and to provide financial stewardship of Indiana stakeholders’ resources, it is imperative to understand how a potential partner sets goals, obtains funding, and managed resources before investing in a relationship.
Dr. Hawkins earned his B.S. in Agronomy from Purdue University, his M.S. in Plant Breeding and Cytogenetics from Iowa State University, and his Ph.D. in Soil Fertility and Crop Production from Purdue University.