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Catlett, Gutierrez to lead College of Agriculture and Home Economics in interim posts

LAS CRUCES - Lowell B. Catlett, a Regents Professor at New Mexico State University, and Paul Gutierrez, associate dean and associate director for NMSU's Cooperative Extension Service, have been selected to lead the College of Agriculture and Home Economics in interim positions.

New Mexico State University Regents Professor Lowell B. Catlett was appointed as the interim dean for the College of Agriculture and Home Economics. (NMSU Agricultural Communications photo by J. Victor Espinoza)

NMSU Executive Vice President and Provost William Flores appointed Catlett as interim dean of the college and named Gutierrez interim vice provost for outreach services. Former Dean Jerry G. Schickedanz retired Oct. 31, and Flores announced this month that the search to replace Schickedanz has been discontinued.

"I am confident that both Dr. Catlett and Dr. Gutierrez will provide excellent service to the College of Agriculture and Home Economics faculty, staff and constituents around the state," Flores said.

Catlett assumed the duties of interim dean on Nov. 1, and agreed this month to continue for the next year.

In addition to his selection in 2002 as a member of the original class of six NMSU Regents Professors, Catlett has received every teaching award the university offers, including the Westhafer Award for Teaching in 1990, NMSU's top honor. The professor of agricultural economics and agricultural business is internationally known as an expert in commodities futures markets and is in demand as a speaker and consultant on predicting and planning for near- and long-term futures.

Catlett, a native of Dalhart, Texas, earned a bachelor's degree in agricultural business and economics from West Texas State University in 1973, a master's in agricultural economics at NMSU in 1975 and a doctorate in economics from Iowa State University in 1980. Catlett started his NMSU career as an assistant professor in 1978.

Gutierrez has served as associate dean and associate director for the Extension Service since December 2003. From 1999-2003, Gutierrez directed the Washington State University Cooperative Extension Service office in King County, Wash., which serves Seattle and a population of about 1.8 million. He spent 14 years as a professor and Extension agricultural and business management specialist for Colorado State University and was the diversity resource leader for CSU Extension for five years.

Gutierrez, a native of Grants, earned a bachelor's degree from the University of Wyoming in 1980, a master's degree from NMSU in 1982 and a doctorate from Oklahoma State University in 1985, all in agricultural economics.