ATHENS, GA. — The University of Georgia’s (UGA) Department of Poultry Science recently received gifts and pledges of more than $2.6 million to establish the R. Harold and Patsy Harrison Distinguished Professorship in Poultry Science.

Todd Applegate, PhD, the UGA poultry science department head, will be the first holder of the professorship, which will be linked to the department head position in perpetuity.

“Endowed professorships and chairs are critical to the University of Georgia’s ability to recruit and retain the very best faculty,” said Jere W. Morehead, president of UGA. “These generous gifts from the R. Harold and Patsy Harrison Foundation are helping us ensure that the poultry science department at UGA continues to be one of the top poultry science programs in the nation.”

After the pledge is completed, the distinguished professorship will move to distinguished chair pending approval by the University System of Georgia Board of Regents.

UGA stated that the multiyear gift is built into immediately spendable funds that give Applegate flexibility to address critical needs within the poultry science department. 

This is the second major gift the department received from the R. Harold and Patsy Harrison Foundation in the last year. The foundation pledged $1 million toward a new poultry science complex that’s starting to be built on the main campus in Athens, Ga.

Bobbie Ann Harrison Reynolds established the R. Harold and Patsy Harrison Foundation in her parents’ honor in 2019. Her father earned his bachelor’s degree in agribusiness from UGA in 1941 and incorporated Harrison Poultry in his hometown of Bethlehem, Ga., in 1958.

UGA’s Department of Poultry science resides under the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (CAES).