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CASNR professor recognized for excellence in education

A CASNR professor at Oklahoma State University is being recognized for his contributions to higher education. Lou Anella, ornamentals professor in OSU’s Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture, and director of The Botanic Garden at OSU, has been named the recipient of the 2015 Excellence in Education Award by the Irrigation Foundation.

A CASNR professor at Oklahoma State University is being recognized for his contributions to higher education.

Lou Anella, ornamentals professor in OSU’s Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture, and director of The Botanic Garden at OSU, has been named the recipient of the 2015 Excellence in Education Award by the Irrigation Foundation.

This award recognizes a person who is actively teaching irrigation, water management and/or water conservation at a two- or four-year institution and honors those who play a critical role in developing educated professionals with the knowledge and skills to create efficient irrigation solutions that will protect water and the environment.

Anella was instrumental in developing an irrigation class designed specifically for horticulture and landscape architect students.

“Up until about eight years ago, our students took an irrigation class through the plant and soil sciences department,” Anella said. “However, they needed a class that focused on irrigation on a smaller scale. The class I developed better meets their needs and I’m still teaching this class today.”

He said he learned so much about irrigation through his involvement in the Irrigation Faculty Academy, an organization that helps others learn about irrigation.

“I truly feel more like a success story than an award winner,” Anella said. “I didn’t know a lot about irrigation before my involvement with the Irrigation Faculty Academy, but now I’m teaching it and helping others learn about irrigation. This is exactly what the Irrigation Faculty Academy is trying to do.”

Anella has gone from being on the learning end of the Irrigation Faculty Academy to being on the committee that organizes it and gives presentations.

“Many people involved in the Irrigation Faculty Academy are industry people. Being a faculty person, I’ve helped changed the perspective and have brought an academic approach to their work,” he said.

Janet Cole, head of OSU’s Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture, said Anella is very deserving of this recognition.

“He has been actively involved in the Irrigation Association and has worked diligently to make his irrigation course relevant to the landscape industry so students are well-prepared for irrigation installation and troubleshooting when they go to internships and career positions,” Cole said. “Our students are highly sought after by employers because they are well-trained and ready for the positions they accept.”

Anella earned both his doctorate and master’s degrees in floriculture and ornamental horticulture from Cornell University. He received his bachelor’s degree from Vassar College. He is a two-time recipient of both the College of Agricultural Sciences and Natural Resources Exemplary Faculty Award and the Regents Distinguished Teaching Award for CASNR.

Anella will be honored Nov. 12 during the 2015 Irrigation Show and Education Conference in Long Beach, California.

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Trisha Gedon
Communications Specialist
Agricultural Communications Services
Oklahoma State University
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Stillwater, OK  74078
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trisha.gedon@okstate.edu