Bayer Environmental Science, a division of Bayer CropScience, endowed $1 million to North Carolina State University to establish a Professor of Sustainable Development. In 2009, Dr. Thomas Rufty, Professor of Crop Science in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at NC State University, was chosen for this chair.
Dr. Rufty leads an aggressive research and outreach program addressing a wide range of distinct but interwoven sustainability-related initiatives. His work spans basic research, applied field studies, and industry outreach and advocacy. He is highly sought as a speaker on the benefits of managed landscapes. He serves as a volunteer leader at the college, university, and community levels to advance sustainability initiatives.
In every aspect of his research, he advances the shared mission of Bayer and the College to ensure the development and management of landscapes in socially and environmentally responsible and economically viable ways.
As the Bayer Environmental Science Professor, Rufty has provided leadership through:
• Plant health research in collaboration with BES including examinations of plant health mechanisms
that can lead to development of new chemical formulations.
• A multiphase project in collaboration with BES to increase the drought and heat tolerance of
perennial ryegrass through genetic engineering.
• Research, teaching, direction and oversight at NC State’s golf course, a sustainable golf course
ecosystem that serves as a model for the students, the green industry, and the general public.
• Carbon sequestration research, development of a carbon calculator now used in K-12 environmental
education programs, and work with Bayer staff to assess the carbon footprint of Bayer’s Clayton
• Prolific publications and presentations on research findings and collaborative work with BES.