Turfgrass Council of North Carolina – Member Spotlight on Cameron Stephens, 2021 TCNC Eagle Award Winner
North Carolina Turfgrass – Julie Holt, Content Director, TheTurfZone.com
TCNC would like to congratulate Cameron Stephens on receiving the Eagle Award. Each year, our board chooses a turfgrass professional to recognize for their commitment to and achievement in the industry.
Cameron is a Ph.D. student at the University of North Carolina. His area of study is plant pathology, with his dissertation covering etiology, epidemiology, and management of take-all root rot on golf course putting greens. Previously, he earned his Master of Science in Agronomy from Penn State and his Bachelor of Science in agriculture at Ohio State.
Alongside his studies, Cameron currently works as a graduate research assistant on a variety of projects. He held the same position at Penn State while working toward his Master’s. He has worked as a teaching assistant at NC State and Penn State as well.
Throughout his educational career, Cameron has co-authored a number of articles for peer reviewed publications, peer reviewed plant disease management reports, industry publications, and extension publications. He has conducted presentations at universities and conferences as well. Add to that membership in industry organizations and volunteerism, numerous first and second place finishes in competitions, and even an athletic career at a varsity lacrosse player at Ohio State.
Cameron says of his future plans in turfgrass:
“Upon completion of my Ph.D. from North Carolina State University in May 2020, I aspire to pursue a career in the turfgrass industry for an agricultural chemical company. While I have primarily worked with the biology and management of pathogenic fungi in the turfgrass system, my mentors have always stressed the importance of engaging in a diverse set of research projects, leadership roles, and experiences. The work I have pursued in turfgrass disease management and pesticide environmental fate has provided me with a number of valuable skills that I can put into action to benefit the end-user. The experiences I have had over the years has shown me what I really enjoy doing and where I can make the biggest impact in the turfgrass community. Interacting with the end-users and customers to provide science-based solutions to practical problems is what I am most passionate about. Therefore, my future career plan to pursue a technical service position within industry fits my strengths and puts me in a position to interact with the growers, help address their unique issues, and improve a company’s team dynamic within the turf and ornamental markets.
I believe achieving my short-term goal of being a technical service representative, my experience working in three different labs throughout my academic tenure and holding various leadership roles would position me to be an effective team leader. I would instill a productive, energetic, and positive culture which would be reflected in the relationships we build with superintendents, sales representatives, and the R&D and marketing teams. My professional career goals are centered around making a positive impact within the turfgrass community by working to improve turfgrass disease and weed management through agronomics and innovative chemical control strategies. I am highly motivated and passionate to pursue these career goals in the turfgrass industry and will continue to broaden my experiences and knowledge along the way.”
TCNC wishes Cameron the best in these future plans, and congratulations on earning the Eagle Award.READ THE ISSUE