Professor - Thornton Distinguished Chair

Texas Tech University

United States

July 15, 2021



Professor - Thornton Distinguished Chair


Plant and Soil Science

Position Description

Contributes to the university's mission through teaching, research and service, some variation by academic unit.

About the Department and/or College

The Department of Plant and Soil Science is a comprehensive academic unit conducting research and offering coursework and programs in several areas of plant and soil sciences. There are 29 full-time faculty members and a student body consisting of approximately 150 undergraduate and 120 graduate students. B.S., M.S., and Ph.D. degrees are offered in Plant and Soil Science. Additionally, distance education courses and degree programs, along with four certificate programs are offered. The department is research-intensive while fostering strong teaching expectations and commitments. Students in the department are educated to meet the challenge of using soil, water, and plant resources for sustainable production and environmental quality.

The College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources (CASNR) is a leading college at Texas Tech University with seven academic departments: Agriculture and Applied Economics; Agricultural Education and Communications; Animal and Food Sciences; Landscape Architecture; Natural Resources Management; Plant and Soil Science; and Veterinary Sciences, as well as multiple research centers and institutes. The CASNR Water Center coordinates faculty who have water-related expertise and interests. For the most recent academic year, the college had approximately 100 tenured/tenure-track faculty, 2,100 undergraduates, and 390 M.S. and Ph.D. students. CASNR has an annual operating budget of more than $10M and approximately $21 million annually in total research expenditures.

Major/Essential Functions

This is a 12-month, tenured, senior faculty position with primary responsibilities for leading an internationally recognized program on integration of forages into whole-farm systems of the Southern Great Plains of North America. This program seeks to sustain the agricultural industry of this region through the conservation of water and soil by long-term, agro- ecosystems research. Responsibilities include teaching, research, service, obtaining and managing large grants, and leading this highly visible program. This position includes an expectation to teach formal undergraduate and graduate courses and direct graduate student programs. Candidates must demonstrate extensive experience in forage management, plant physiology, plant and grazing-animal nutrition, and/or soil-forage-animal-environmental interrelationships. The individual selected for this position will be heavily involved in the Texas Coalition for Sustainable Integrated Systems (TeCSIS) and serve on the management team of the Texas Alliance for Water Conservation (TAWC) Program. These existing programs are composed of large teams that include multi-disciplinary scientists, producers, private industry, government agencies, and policymakers.

Salary will be competitive and commensurate with the experience of the incumbent. This endowed position is currently supported with recurring funding that is currently used to support a senior research associate and other program and payroll expenses.

Candidates for the Professor - Thornton Distinguished Chair should electronically submit by July 15, 2021 , a complete professional vita, letter of intent, and names of five individuals who could be contacted as references. Questions and correspondence on this position should be directed to Dr. Peter Dotray ( or Dr. Glen Ritchie (

The successful candidate will need to demonstrate the immigration status necessary to accept full-time employment in the United States. Texas Tech University is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer committed to increasing the diversity of its faculty.

Candidates who have very strong records of scholarship supported by extramural funding and who have the proven capacity or clear potential to bring externally sponsored research to Texas Tech University are encouraged to apply. Applicants will be expected to do service. Service duties include program-building, as well as a commitment to extra-curricular activities. Service to the department, college, and the university is expected.


Texas Tech University

Required Qualifications

Academic degree as defined by the academic unit and as appropriate for the position held. Demonstrated record of effectiveness as a teacher, a record of peer reviewed publication and/or peer-reviewed creative activity which has contributed to the discipline or field of study, to the candidate's intellectual and artistic development, and to the quality of the academic enterprise; a record of professional service appropriate to the discipline; promise of growth in teaching and research or artistic and creative activity

Preferred Qualifications

Required Qualifications

  • Ph.D. in forage management, plant physiology, plant, and grazing-animal nutrition, or soil-forage-animal-environmental interrelationships.
  • Demonstrated communication skills with the ability to effectively communicate with scientific audiences, producers and stakeholders, and general audiences orally and in writing.
  • Demonstrated analytical skills, including the ability to quantify complex interactions within controlled environments and in field production settings.
  • Experience and leadership in independent and broad cross-disciplinary research.
  • Demonstrated ability to publish research findings in peer-reviewed journals.
  • Demonstrated ability to secure competitive funding from national sources for research.
  • Demonstrated teaching skills in forages, pasture crops, and pasture ecosystem courses.
  • Demonstrated an ongoing commitment to serving diverse student populations.
  • Preferred qualifications:

  • International experience and collaboration with top international research institutions.
  • Integrative research experience in soil-plant-animal interactions.
  • Demonstrated ability to analyze big data sets.
  • Experience working with diverse student populations and first-generation students is highly desirable
  • Does this position work in a research laboratory?


    Required Attachments

    Cover Letter, Professional/Personal References, Research Statement, Teaching Philosophy, Transcript

    Job Type

    Full Time

    Pay Basis


    Pay Statement

    Compensation is commensurate upon the qualifications of the individual selected and budgetary guidelines of the hiring department, as well as, the institutional pay plan. For additional information, please reference the institutional pay plan on the Human Resources webpage.

    Travel Required

    Up to 25%



    Grant Funded?


    Job Group

    Full Professor

    EEO Statement

    As an Equal Employment Opportunity/Affirmative Action employer, Texas Tech University is dedicated to the goal of building a culturally diverse faculty committed to teaching and working in a multicultural environment. We actively encourage applications from all those who can contribute, through their research, teaching, and/or service, to the diversity and excellence of the academic community at Texas Tech University. The university does not discriminate on the basis of an applicant's race, ethnicity, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, national origin, age, disability, genetic information or status as a protected veteran. Texas Tech welcomes consideration of dual career and professional couple accommodations.

    Salary Grade


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