As this historic weather event is wreaking havoc across our state, many of you, your families and your friends may be struggling. You are our AgriLife family, and your safety is the first priority. In this uncertain time, I encourage you to focus on what’s most important—you and your family.
As we are all individually dealing with weather-related hardships, we know this storm has been particularly devastating to those that feed and clothe our nation—Texas farmers and ranchers—and you have responded once again to assist them. AgriLife Extension has offered resources and support for our producers on preparing animals and crops for the cold weather. The Forest Service continues to respond to calls for assistance, clearing roadway impacted by snow. Just yesterday, I saw a Dallas Morning News story quoting AgriLife expertise on how to save perishables during power outages. This response came to fruition while dealing with very trying home circumstances.
This is just small sampling of the many ways in which you all are embodying the Aggie core values in yet another historical, unprecedented challenge for the state in pursuit of our land grant mission. I am deeply grateful for your dedication and selfless service amidst these trying times, and I know our communities are too.
While access to remote work capabilities has given us so much during the pandemic—the ability to stay in touch with people safely and the ability to continue our important work—I want to reiterate that I expect your first priority to be you and your family. Our mission is to improve the lives of all Texans, and that includes each of you.
For resources and support related to winter storms, I encourage you to visit the Disaster Education Network. Additionally, warming centers have been opened across the state for individuals and families impacted by power outages. The Texas Department of Emergency Management created a map to show available warming centers acrossTexas. Of course, please follow local guidance and use extreme caution if you plan to relocate.
Please take care of yourselves and stay safe.
Patrick J. Stover, Ph.D.
Vice Chancellor and Dean for Agriculture and Life Sciences
Director, Texas A&M AgriLife Research