Dr. Rick Vierling

Dr. Rick Vierling is Center Director for Texas A&M Agrilife Vernon Research and Extension Center, and Manager, Texas A&M AgriLife Foundation Seed.  Rick is a nationally recognized expert in agricultural research and business development.  Vierling served as the National Corn Growers Association director of research and business development for six years, leading all aspects of research advocacy with federal agencies and technical staff for congressional lobbying, as well as managing national research programs including the grant process, yearly budget development and management of consultants.  He worked with National Corn, USDA, and Los Alamos National Laboratory to establish the National Agricultural Genotyping Center.  Prior to that, he was an adjunct faculty member at Purdue University and Director of the Indiana Crop Improvement Genetics program.  He turned around a struggling genetics testing program, negotiating technology acquisition agreements with Los Alamos National Laboratory, NASA, and the Indiana State Chemist’s Office.  When working with NASA, he was selected team leader for three joint public/private experiments performed on space shuttle missions. He earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Missouri and his doctorate from Texas Tech University.