UF's Carlton Davis inducted into George Washington Carver Hall of Fame at Tuskegee University

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Carlton Davis, distinguished service professor in food and resource economics at the University of Florida, has been inducted into the George Washington Carver Public Service Hall of Fame at Tuskegee University in Alabama.

The public service award, presented to Davis on Dec. 6, is given to those individuals whose work mirrors the philosophy of world-recognized scholar George Washington Carver – “the greatest good for the greatest number of people.”

The award recognizes teaching and research accomplishments that improve the quality of life for clientele served by land-grant institutions such as Tuskegee University and UF. The award ceremony is part of the annual Professional Agricultural Workers Conference in Tuskegee.

Davis, who joined the faculty of UF’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences in 1970, said he was humbled by the award. “It means everything to me to receive this award that carries the name of such a distinguished scientist,” he said. “George Washington Carver was a great scientist, but he never forgot his responsibility for the welfare of people.”

Davis said his current research is focused on small island economies in the Caribbean Basin and their ability to compete in global trade with large, industrialized economies. He is also studying the impact of invasive plants and animals, particularly their ability to introduce disease-bearing organisms and pathogens to agriculture in the United States.

In the books, monographs, journal articles and book chapters he has authored, Davis has focused on topics of special interest to the South. These include the incidence of rural poverty, particularly among minority groups; the impact of the national food stamp program; the quality of rural housing in Florida and the South; and the issues of food and nutritional security in low-income households of the South.

When Davis received the Southern Agricultural Economics Association Lifetime Achievement Award in 1996, the Journal of Agricultural and Applied Economics lauded his “path-breaking research on the impact of U.S. Department of Agriculture nutrition programs in low-income households.”

In 1993, Davis received the Distinguished Black Faculty Award from the UF Alumni Association.

He is also a member of the Phi Beta Delta International Society of Scholars and the Gamma Sigma Delta Honor Society. A Ford Foundation International Research Fellow, Davis serves on the editorial council of the Journal of Agricultural Economics Issues and the editorial advisory board of Farm and Business, the journal of the Caribbean Agro-Economic Society. He also served as the society’s North American representative.

Davis served a three-year term on the governing board of the American Agricultural Economics Association, and his colleagues in AAEA named him Outstanding Black Agricultural Economist. In addition to his UF faculty appointment, Davis has held teaching and research appointments at the University of the West Indies.

He received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in agricultural economics from the University of Nebraska in 1964 and 1965, respectively. Davis completed his doctoral degree in agricultural economics at Michigan State University in 1970.