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Services for former Texas A&M System Chancellor Perry Adkisson set for Friday

Services for former Texas A&M System Chancellor Perry Adkisson set for Friday

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Services for former Texas A&M University System Chancellor Perry Adkisson, who also served in a variety of roles at the flagship university, are scheduled for Friday.

Adkisson, 91, died June 25.

The Arkansas native joined the faculty of Texas A&M’s department of entomology in 1958, and later served as department head, deputy chancellor and vice president for agriculture and renewable resources before he was named System chancellor in 1986. He served in that position through 1990.

According to Texas A&M, he worked with both the state and U.S. legislatures to significantly increase funding for the A&M System’s research and extension programs. He also established several centers, including the Institute of Biosciences and Technology in Houston. Adkisson was a leader in bringing Corpus Christi State University, Texas A&I University, Laredo State University and West Texas State University into the Texas A&M System.

Adkisson was among those who worked to get President George H.W. Bush to establish his presidential library and museum in College Station, and served as executive director of the Bush Presidential Library Center and the George H.W. Bush Presidential Library Foundation in the 1990s.

“Perry Adkisson was a giant in the Aggie family,” said current A&M System Chancellor John Sharp in a written statement to The Eagle. “As a legislator I watched him work in the capitol for Texas A&M, and for all the System agencies. He presided over the addition of new schools, was a key driver of the Bush School of Government and Public Service, and garnered profound respect for himself and the A&M System. And he did it all by being a truly nice guy. I will miss him!”

Adkisson was a pioneer in developing the concepts of integrated pest management, according to the university. His techniques were implemented throughout the state, saving crops from boll weevil infestations in the 1960.

He received numerous prestigious awards and received three of the most notable in agriculture — the Alexander Von Humboldt Award, the Wolf Prize in Agriculture and the World Food Prize. He is listed among the 25 agricultural scientists who made the greatest impact on U.S. agriculture in the 20th century.

Adkisson was eventually elected to The National Academy of Sciences and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He served as president of the Entomological Society of America, and was a member and/or chairman of almost 40 committees. His obituary notes that he wrote or co-wrote more than 200 articles.

“Texas A&M and Texas agriculture are eternally grateful for the contributions Dr. Adkisson made during his years of service,” Patrick Stover, vice chancellor of Texas A&M AgriLife, dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and director of Texas A&M AgriLife Research, told Texas A&M Today. “His leadership and dedication will serve as an example for all faculty, current and future.”

Survivors include his wife, Gloria; daughter Amanda Adkisson and her husband, Bill Crockford, of College Station; stepchildren Melissa Ray and Michael Ray, and his wife, Brandy; grandchildren Sara, Nathan, Madison and Brooklyn, all of Benton, Arkansas; and four nephews, Jimmy Adkisson of Blytheville, Arkansas, Brian Perry of Castle Rock, Colorado, Scott Perry and and Logan Perry; and two nieces, Kim Dyson of Bryan and Diane Ward of Clinton, Tennessee.

Memorials may be made to Hospice Brazos Valley, Brazos Valley Food Bank or St. Jude’s.

Services will be streamed online at 3 p.m. Friday at Arrangements are under the direction of Memorial Funeral Home.

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