The Agricultural Drainage Management Coalition has named Dr. Harold F. Reetz, Jr. its new executive director. ADMC is dedicated to educating farm, drainage, conservation, and regulatory groups about the latest drainage water management system technologies, which can help benefit crops and reduce nutrient enrichment of surface water. Its members include equipment manufacturers, drainage contractors and state commodity associations.
The coalition recently coordinated a three-year demonstration of controlled drainage management in Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Minnesota and Ohio.
Reetz is an independent agronomy consultant based in Monticello, Ill., with long experience in research and education, from his role as an extension and research corn specialist at Purdue University to a 28-year post as a regional agronomist with the Potash and Phosphate Institute/International Plant Nutrition Institute. Reetz was one of the founders of the Certified Crop Adviser program, has served as first vice chair of the Conservation Technology Information Center, serves on the executive committee of the National Association of Conservation Districts, and is an active member of the American Society of Agronomy, the Crop Science Society of America and the Soil Science Society of America.
Management of ag drainage water is next frontier in crop production
"We are delighted to have Harold in the role of ADMC's executive director," says ADMC president Charlie Schafer of Adair, Iowa. Schafer, who is a representative of Agri-Drain Corporation, says, "Harold Reetz brings a combination of research expertise and on-the-ground practicality that will help the coalition continue to help advance the understanding of drainage water management systems and communicate that knowledge to many audiences. Harold's interest in high-yield cropping systems and precision agriculture also make an excellent tie-in with the next frontier in crop production and environmental protection – the management of agricultural drainage water."
Former executive director Leonard Binstock will continue working with the coalition as a consultant. ADMC conducts training sessions and serves as a clearinghouse for information on drainage management systems. The group's website www.admcoalition.com features cost-benefit analyses of drainage systems, guidance on drainage regulations, and data from many of the 19 on-farm demonstrations conducted as part of the Midwest project.
Reetz says he is eager to help ADMC develop even more outreach and educational programs. "Having grown up on a grain and dairy farm in east-central Illinois, I have known the value of a good drainage system all my life, and I am intrigued by the possibilities for managing those systems for better water efficiency for the crops and better control of water quality downstream," he says. For more information visit www.admcoalition.com or call 507-451-0073.