In December 2008, Dr. Mark A. Hussey was appointed vice chancellor and dean for agriculture and life sciences. As dean of the Texas A&M University College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, he leads 14 academic departments which are home to more than 7,500 students. As vice chancellor, Dr. Hussey provides statewide leadership and oversight for The Texas A&M University System’s four agricultural agencies: Texas A&M AgriLife Research, the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service, the Texas A&M Forest Service, and the Texas A&M Veterinary Medical Diagnostic Laboratory.
During his tenure, Dr. Hussey served as interim president for Texas A&M University from January 2014 to April 2015. In May 2015, he returned to his position as vice chancellor and dean. As such, he has managed the design and construction of the multi-million dollar Texas A&M AgriLife headquarters buildings on the Texas A&M University campus. Dr. Hussey focused on increasing engagement and development, more than doubling giving for scholarships and other programs. He also initiated a series of leadership development programs, including the AgriLife Advanced Leadership Program, which provides training and education for AgriLife leaders in the making. Dr. Hussey is also an accomplished national leader, serving on the board of trustees for the Council for Agricultural Science and Technology and currently as chair of the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities (APLU) Budget and Advocacy Committee.
Before his appointment as vice chancellor and dean, Dr. Hussey served as the director of Texas A&M AgriLife Research. During his tenure as director, he led the agency through a strategic branding initiative and started a corporate relations team that brought in research contracts worth more than $15 million.
From 1983 to 1985, Dr. Hussey was an assistant professor at the Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center at Weslaco, Texas. His research focused on forage breeding and management research. In 1985, he joined the faculty of the Department of Soil and Crop Sciences at Texas A&M University as an assistant professor and was promoted to professor in 1997. Four years later, he became professor and head of the Department of Soil and Crop Sciences. In 2005, Dr. Hussey was named associate director of programs for the Texas Agricultural Experiment Station (now Texas A&M AgriLife Research).
Dr. Hussey’s academic research included serving as co-leader of a collaborative forage grass improvement team, developing new breeding methods for subtropical forage and bioenergy crops, including the use of molecular tools to better understand the regulation and control of cold tolerance, hybrid vigor, seed production, and reproduction.
Dr. Hussey is a native of southern Illinois, where he received a bachelor of science degree in biology from the University of Illinois. He continued his education at Texas A&M University, where he received a master of science degree and a doctorate in plant breeding.