The National Cotton Ginner's Association recently awarded the Distinguished Service Award to Tommy Valco, the cotton technology transfer & education coordinator in USDA's Office of Technology Transfer in Stoneville, Miss.
The Distinguished Service Award is reserved for those individuals who have provided a career of distinguished service to the U.S. ginning industry.
Valco is recognized as a national expert in cotton production and processing technology. He has authored or coauthored numerous publications and made numerous technical presentations on cotton production, precision farming, cotton harvesting and field storage, ginning, cottonseed handling and storage, and fiber quality evaluations. In addition to serving as an advisor to numerous organizations, he has been a member of the American Society of Agricultural Engineers and served on a number of that organization's committees.
After earning a B.S., M.A., and Ph.D in Agricultural Engineering from Texas A&M University, Valco began his career in 1977 as a test engineer for International Harvester. The following year, he became an Extension agricultural engineer for the Texas Agricultural Extension Service. In 1987, he joined the Texas Agricultural Extension Service as an associate professor and Extension agricultural engineer. From 1992–2001 he worked as the director of Agricultural Research for Cotton Incorporated prior to joining USDA in Stoneville.