I am pleased to announce the appointment of John Tracy, Ph.D., director of the Texas Water Resources Institute, as interim head of the Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering, effective September 1. His appointment follows the August 31 retirement of Steve Searcy, Ph.D., who has served with distinction in the role since 2012.
Dr. Tracy is a preeminent researcher and an accomplished administrator. For two decades, he has led many successful initiatives that connected faculty and staff with a wide range of government and private entities to address regional and national issues.
Dr. Tracy joined Texas A&M in fall 2015. At the Texas Water Resources Institute, and in his position as a professor of water resources in the Zachry Department of Civil Engineering, he has pursued research collaborations to understand and develop sustainable water resource management practices across the western United States. These projects have resulted in publications in agricultural, chemical, engineering, and interdisciplinary water resource professional journals. Dr. Tracy’s recent research focuses on the behavior of water resource systems under the influence of changing hydrologic, economic and social conditions. He also works to improve engagement and knowledge among water resource managers and users.
Prior to joining Texas A&M, Dr. Tracy served as associate vice president for research for Southern Idaho from 2009 to 2015 and as vice president for research at the University of Idaho in 2006 and 2007. Before that, he served as director of the Idaho Water Resources Research Institute and as professor of civil engineering with the University of Idaho. In 2000, he became the inaugural director of the Center for Watersheds and Environmental Sustainability at the Desert Research Institute in Reno, Nevada.
Dr. Tracy earned his bachelor’s degree in civil engineering at Colorado State University in 1980, and his master’s and doctoral degrees in engineering at the University of California at Davis in 1986 and 1989, respectively. He started his academic career at Kansas State University in the Department of Civil Engineering in 1989, where his research focused on modeling phytoremediation processes and developing models to aid administration of surface and groundwater rights.
Please join me in welcoming Dr. Tracy to the college leadership team.
Patrick J. Stover, Ph.D.
Vice Chancellor, Texas A&M AgriLife
Dean, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences
Director, Texas A&M AgriLife Research