E.T. York recognized with new plaque at UF’s McCarty Hall
GAINESVILLE, Fla. — E.T. York, chancellor emeritus of the State University System of Florida, was honored Nov. 16 with the installation of a plaque at the University of Florida to honor his many years of outstanding service to the state and nation.
The plaque recognizing York as a “Great Floridian” was unveiled in McCarty Hall during ceremonies led by Jimmy Cheek, UF senior vice president for agriculture and natural resources.
In 1997, the Florida Museum of History named York a Great Floridian, an honor, which at that time, had been bestowed on 11 other individuals who have made notable contributions to shaping the state of Florida.
Cheek said the official plaque, which is designed to be placed in buildings, is a permanent tribute to York’s long and distinguished service. It is located in UF’s McCarty Hall, next to the York Distinguished Lecturer Series plaques.
“Dr. York’s service over the past 50 years has strengthened the land-grant university system and its role in domestic and international agricultural development,” Cheek said. “He has been recognized as a leader in agriculture for his talents as a scientist, educator and administrator.”
In addition to serving as chancellor of the state university system, York served UF as provost for agriculture, vice president for agricultural affairs, executive vice president and interim president.
In 1964, he organized UF’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, bringing under one administrative umbrella the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences, Florida Agricultural Experiment Station and Florida Cooperative Extension Service.
In addition to supporting the mission of land-grant universities, York served as an adviser to Presidents Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Ford, Carter and Reagan. In that capacity, he traveled widely to provide agricultural assistance in countries throughout Latin America, Asia and Africa. His analysis of the agricultural development challenges faced by the countries of Central America and the Caribbean was a precursor to the Caribbean Basin Initiative.
York continues to focus on alleviating world hunger, particularly on expanding food production to meet rapidly growing needs, making food safer and more accessible, and increasing production efficiency to lower food costs. He has received many national and international honors with seven awards or programs established in his name.
York was honored in January 2003 by the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture in Washington, D.C. IICA recognized him for his role in promoting rural prosperity in the Americas.
In December 2003, he received an honorary Doctor of Sciences degree from North Carolina State University. He also has received honorary doctorates from Auburn University, University of Florida and Ohio State University.
In 2004, York received the 2004 Service to American and World Agriculture Award from the National Association of County Agricultural Agents.