Posted by: Skyler Di Stefano on Jun 15, 2011

Janis Boettinger Award

Utah State University professor Janis Boettinger was presented the 2011 Cooperator Achievement Award in Asheville, N.C., May 26. The award, which is presented by The National Cooperative Soil Survey, is one of the highest honors the organization gives.

The award recognizes exceptional achievement by individuals working under NCSS. Boettinger earned the award for her extensive work with the NCSS in cooperation with USU’s research program. She is the only faculty member at USU whose role includes working with NCSS.

“I am blown away by this award,” Boettinger said. “I never thought I would get something like this at this point in my career. Not many of these awards are given out. It’s a big honor.”

Boettinger has been a professor of pedology at USU and an NCSS cooperator since 1992 where she has been heavily involved in soil mapping.

Soil mapping is a large focus of Boettinger’s research. It determines the composition of soil and how it should best be used. This is useful to contractors who are looking to build homes and commercial businesses that need to know if the land they are using is on a flood plain.

In areas like Cache Valley, soil survey is important as it can predict where flooding can be expected. Boettinger said she and her graduate students have revolutionized soil survey in the United States.

Boettinger has worked with 18 graduate students who are now working for NCSS in Utah, Wyoming, Hawaii, Nevada, Alaska and Arizona. She was presented the award after four of her former students nominated her.

“The students and faculty at USU and the Department of Plants, Soils and Climate are fortunate to have Janis,” said Colby Brungard, one of the students who nominated Boettinger. “Because of her tireless work, her depth of knowledge and her passion for teaching and mentoring, she has created a program in pedology and digital soil mapping which is known worldwide.”

For more information, contact Boettinger at 435-797-4026.