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Southwest Florida Research & Education Center

Southwest Florida Research & Education Center

SWFREC supports thirteen faculty programs and a staff of more than 90 people. Active research programs in citrus horticulture, vegetable horticulture, irrigation and water resource management, precision agricultural engineering, pest management, plant pathology, citrus pathology, agricultural and natural resource economics, soil microbiology, plant physiology, weed science, soil science, and agricultural economics occur on 320 acres of land at SWFREC. The faculty and staff of SWFREC serve a vibrant commercial agricultural region.

SWFREC Directory

Edward “Gilly” Evans

Interim Director, Ph.D.

Food and Resource Economics Department

eaevans@ufl.edu

Website

UF / IFAS SWFREC - Immokalee
2685 SR 29 N | Immokalee, FL 34142
Tel:(239) 658-3413
Fax:(239) 658-3403

Gene McAvoy

Gene McAvoy

Associate Director for Stakeholder Relations

gmcavoy@ufl.edu

Website

UF / IFAS SWFREC - Immokalee 
2685 SR 29 N | Immokalee, FL 34142
Tel:(239) 658-3414
Fax:(239) 658-3403

Ute Albrecht

Ute Albrecht

Assistant Professor, Ph.D.

Plant Physiology

ualbrecht@ufl.edu

Website

UF / IFAS SWFREC - Immokalee 
2685 SR 29 N | Immokalee, FL 34142
Tel:(239) 658-3422
Fax:(239) 658-3403

Ozgur Batuman

Assistant Professor, Ph.D.

Citrus Pathology

obatuman@ufl.edu

Website

UF / IFAS SWFREC - Immokalee 
2685 SR 29 N | Immokalee, FL 34142
Tel:(239) 658-3408
Fax:(239) 658-3403

UF / IFAS SWFREC - Immokalee 
2685 SR 29 N | Immokalee, FL 34142
Tel:(239) 658-3458

UF / IFAS SWFREC - Immokalee 
2685 SR 29 N | Immokalee, FL 34142
Tel:(239) 658-3468
Fax:(239) 658-3403

Fernando Alferez

Assistant Professor, Ph.D.

Citrus Horticulture

alferez@ufl.edu

Website

UF / IFAS SWFREC - Immokalee 
2685 SR 29 N | Immokalee, FL 34142
Tel:(239) 658-3426
Fax:(239) 658-3403

Ramdas Kanissery

Assistant Professor, Ph.D.

Weed Science

rkanissery@ufl.edu

UF / IFAS SWFREC - Immokalee 
2685 SR 29 N | Immokalee, FL 34142
Tel:(239) 658-3455

UF / IFAS SWFREC - Immokalee 
2685 SR 29 N | Immokalee, FL 34142
Tel:(239) 658-3430

Tara R Wade

Assistant Professor, Ph.D.

Agricultural Economics

Tara.Wade@ufl.edu

Website

UF / IFAS SWFREC - Immokalee 
2685 SR 29 N | Immokalee, FL 34142
Tel:(239) 658-3444
Fax:(239) 658-3403

Ioannis Ampatzidis

Yiannis Ampatzidis

Associate Professor, Ph.D.

Precision Agriculture

i.ampatzidis@ufl.edu

Website

UF / IFAS SWFREC - Immokalee 
2685 SR 29 N | Immokalee, FL 34142
Tel:(239) 658-3451
Fax:(239) 658-3403

Kimberly Morgan

Associate Professor, Ph.D.

Agricultural Economics

kimorgan@ufl.edu

Website

UF / IFAS SWFREC - Immokalee 
2685 SR 29 N | Immokalee, FL 34142
Tel:(239) 658-3428
Fax:(239) 658-3403

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Sanjay Shukla

Professor, Ph.D.

Ag & Bio Engineering / Water

sshukla@ufl.edu

Website

UF / IFAS SWFREC - Immokalee 
2685 SR 29 N | Immokalee, FL 34142
Tel:(239) 658-3425
Fax:(239) 658-3403

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Dr. Calvin Arnold
Professor Emeritus
Horticultural Sciences
cearnold@ufl.edu

Dr. Edward A. Hanlon
Professor Emeritus
Soil and Water Science
eahanlon@ufl.edu

ADMINISTRATION

NameTitlePHONEEMAIL
Edward “Gilly” Evans Interim Center Director (239) 658-3413 eaevans@ufl.edu
Gene McAvoy Associate Director for Stakeholder Relations (239) 658-3414 gmcavoy@ufl.edu

CLERICAL AND PURCHASING

NameTitlePHONEEMAIL
Alicia Antone Research Administrator (352) 660-4316 aantone@ufl.edu
Denise Bates Administrative Support AST II (239) 658-3424 ddbates@ufl.edu
Rebecca Decker Human Resources Generalist I (239) 658-3420 rdecker54@ufl.edu
Angelina Gonzales Accountant (239) 658-3450 a.gonzales@ufl.edu
Janice Hill OPS Administrative (239) 658-3400 jthill@ufl.edu
Allison Walton Administrative Support Assistant (239) 658-3400 awalton3@ufl.edu

FARM FLEET AND FACILITIES OPERATIONS

NameTitlePHONEEMAIL
Zoe Watson Farm Manager (239) 658-3434 zshobert@ufl.edu
Perfecto Aragus Agricultural Assistant (239) 658-3400 pgaragus@ufl.edu
Cindy Cortright Custodial Worker II (239) 658-3400 c.wilder@ufl.edu
Lenel Jones Agricultural Assistant I (239) 658-3400 lejones@ufl.edu
Roger McGill Maintenance Generalist II (239) 658-3400 frmc@ufl.edu
Jorge Ocanas Agricultural Assistant (239) 658-3400 ocanasrj@ufl.edu
Jose Rosas Agricultural Assistant I (239) 658-3400 josegrosas@ufl.edu
Ivan Rua Agricultural Assistant I (239) 658-3400 irua@ufl.edu

INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY

NameTitlePHONEEMAIL
Kevin Hill IT Professional II (239) 658-3439 kuh@ufl.edu
Marisol Sanchez Gonzalez Applic Developer Analyst II (239) 658-3435 sanchezm@ufl.edu

MEDIA

NameTitlePHONEEMAIL
Julie Carson Marketing and Comm Specialist (239) 658-3462 carsonj@ufl.edu

AGRICULTURAL ECONOMICS

NameTitlePHONEEMAIL
Kimberly L Morgan  Associate Professor (239) 658-3428 kimorgan@ufl.edu 
Barbara Hyman Education/Training Spec III (239) 658-3461 hymanb@ufl.edu

AGRICULTURAL NATURAL RESOURCES ECONOMICS

NameTitlePHONEEMAIL
Tara Wade Assistant Professor (239) 658-3444 Tara.Wade@ufl.edu
Sawssan Boufous Post Doctoral Associate (239) 658-3400 boufous.sawssan@ufl.edu
Shourish Chakravarty Post Doctoral Associate (239) 658-3400 shourish@ufl.edu

PRECISION AGRICULTURAL ENGINEERING

NameTitlePHONEEMAIL
Yiannis Ampatzidis Associate Professor (239) 658-3451 i.ampatzidis@ufl.edu
Vitor Gontijo da Cunha OPS Technical (239) 658-3400 vitor.gontijodac@ufl.edu
Lucas Fideles Costa Engineering and Research Technologist (239) 658-3400 lfidelescosta@ufl.edu
Sri Kakarla Engineering and Research Technologist (239) 324-4794 charanksri@ufl.edu
Israel Ojo Graduate Research Assistant (239) 658-3400 israelojo@ufl.edu
Vinay Vijayakumar Graduate Assistant (239) 658-3400 v66vijayakumar@ufl.edu
Zhicheng (Jason) Zhu Post Doctoral Associate (239) 658-3400 zhu.zhicheng@ufl.edu

WATER RESOURCES

NameTitlePHONEEMAIL
Sanjay Shukla Professor (239) 658-3425 sshukla@ufl.edu
Adam Fuerst Graduate Research Assistant (239) 658-3400 adam.fuerst@ufl.edu
Kira Hansen Graduate Research Assistant (239) 658-3400 khansen5@ufl.edu
Gregory Hendricks Engineer (239) 658-3466 hendrick@ad.ufl.edu
Israel Ojo Graduate Research Assistant (239) 658-3400 israelojo@ufl.edu
Leo Saltaren Pazmino OPS Technical (239) 658-3400 l.saltarenpazmin@ufl.edu
Vijay Santikari Post Doctoral Associate (239) 658-3418 vsantikari@ufl.edu

BEST MANAGEMENT PRACTICES (BMP)

NameTitlePHONEEMAIL
Timothy Ayankojo Post Doctoral Associate (239) 658-3400 iayankojo@ufl.edu
Gabriel Lopez Biological Scientist (239) 658-3400 jlopez99@ufl.edu

ENTOMOLOGY

NameTitlePHONEEMAIL
Jawwad Qureshi Associate Professor (239) 658-3458 JawwadQ@ufl.edu
Mohamed Ali Graduate Student (239) 658-3400 mohamed.ali@ufl.edu
Jean Yves Berisse Graduate Research Assistant (239) 658-3400 jberisse@ufl.edu
Xuedong Chen OPS Research Assistant (239) 658-3400 xuedo1gchen@ufl.edu
Barry Kostyk Biological Scientist (239) 658-3457 bkostyk@ufl.edu
Benny Pena Agricultural Assistant (239) 658-3400 benitopena@ufl.edu
Gabriel Rugno Post Doctoral Associate (239) 658-3400 gabrielrugno@ufl.edu
Esmaeil Saberi Post Doctoral Associate (239) 658-3400 esaberi@ufl.edu
Roberto Torres OPS Agricultural Assistant (239) 658-3400 r.torres1@ufl.edu
Monica Triana Agricultural Assistant (239) 658-3400 mtriana@ufl.edu

CITRUS HORTICULTURE

NameTitlePHONEEMAIL
Fernando Alferez Assistant Professor (239) 658-3426 alferez@ufl.edu
Daniel Boakye Graduate Assistant-Research (239) 658-3400 dadu.boakye@ufl.edu
Timothy Gast Biological Scientist (239) 658-3442 tcgast@ufl.edu
Maria Martinez Agricultural Assistant (239) 658-3400 martinezmaria@ufl.edu

PLANT PHYSIOLOGY

NameTitlePHONEEMAIL
Ute Albrecht Assistant Professor (239) 658-3422 ualbrecht@ufl.edu
Leigh Archer Graduate Assistant-Research (239) 658-3400 larcher1@ufl.edu
Gabriel de Castro Marconi Pugina Agricultural Assistant (239) 658-3420 gabrieldecastro@ufl.edu
Caroline de Favari Tardivo Graduate Assistant-Research (239) 658-3400 caroline.defava@ufl.edu
Jasmine de Freitas OPS (239) 658-3400 jasminedefreitas@ufl.edu
Anas Fadli Post Doctoral Associate (239) 658-3400 a.fadli@ufl.edu
Franco Gustave OPS (239) 658-3400 fgustave@ufl.edu
Bryce Meyering Biological Scientist (239) 658-3416 bbmeyering@ufl.edu
Gerardo Moreno OPS (239) 658-3400 morenog@ufl.edu
Larissa Nunes da Silva OPS (239) 658-3400 nunesdasilva.la@ufl.edu
Ankit Pokhrel Graduated Assistant Research (239) 658-3400 pokhrel.an@ufl.edu

WEED SCIENCE

NameTitlePHONEEMAIL
Ramdas Kanissery Assistant Professor (239) 658-3455 rkanissery@ufl.edu
Robert Riefer Biological Scientist (239) 658-3400 reriefer@ufl.edu
Nirmal Timilsina Graduate Assistant (239) 324-4744 nirmaltimilsina@ufl.edu
Ruby Tiwari Graduate Assistant (239) 658-3400 ruby.tiwari@ufl.edu

CITRUS PATHOLOGY

NameTitlePHONEEMAIL
Ozgur Batuman Assistant Professor (239) 658-3408 obatuman@ufl.edu
Juan Balderas OPS (239) 658-3400 jbalderas1@ufl.edu
Kellee Britt Post Doctoral Associate (239) 658-3400 kbritt2005@ufl.edu
Kseniya Chumachenko Biological Scientist (239) 658-3400 kchumachenko@ufl.edu
Sanju Kunwar Post Doctoral Associate (239) 658-3400  sanju.kunwar@ufl.edu
Ana Redondo Research Coordinator (239) 658-3400 redondo@ufl.edu
Nicholas Tezna Triana OPS Technical (239) 658-3400 nteznatriana@ufl.edu
Salih Yilmaz Graduate Research Assistant (239) 658-3400 salihyilmaz@ufl.edu

VEGETABLE PATHOLOGY

NameTitlePHONEEMAIL
Pamela Roberts Professor (239) 658-3430 pdr@ufl.edu
Katherine Hendricks Biological Scientist (239) 658-3445 kemh@ufl.edu
Stephanie Teems Research Coordinator (239) 6583400 ssteems@ufl.edu

SOIL AND WATER SCIENCE

NameTitlePHONEEMAIL
Alisheikh Atta Post Doctoral Associate (239) 658-3400 aatta@ufl.edu
Kamal Mahmoud Research Coordinator (239) 658-3419 kaem@ufl.edu

SOIL MICROBIOLOGY

NameTitlePHONEEMAIL
Sarah Strauss Assistant Professor (239) 658-3468 strauss@ufl.edu
Emma Dawson Graduate Assistant (239) 658-3400 emma.dawson@ufl.edu
Brittney Monus Biological Scientist (239) 658-3447 bmonus@ufl.edu
Kira Sorochkina Graduate Assistant-Research (239) 658-3400 k.sorochkina@ufl.edu

VEGETABLE HORTICULTURE

NameTitlePHONEEMAIL
Diderot Saintilma Graduate Assistant (239) 658-3400 dsaintilma@ufl.edu
Jessie Watson Biological Scientist (239) 658-3404 jwatson84@ufl.edu

CURRENT STUDENTS

NameTitleProgramResearch Topic
Mohamed Ali PhD student Entomology Management of Asian Citrus Psyllid
Leigh Archer PhD student Plant Physiology Tree Physiological Responses to Trunk Injection of Therapeutics for HLB Control

Jean-Yves Berisse

  Entomology  
Daniel Boakye PhD Student Citrus Horticulture Basis for Understanding Abscission and Managing Pre-harvest Fruit Drop in HLB Affected Citrus Trees
Kellee Britt PhD Student Citrus Pathology Unraveling the Asian Citrus Psyllid Virome and Its Interactions with Candidatus Liberibacter Asiaticus in FL Citrus
Emma Dawson PhD Student Soil Microbiology  
Caroline De Favari Tardivo   Plant Physiology  
Angelica Engel PhD Student Water Resources Flows in the Northern Everglades Basin Under Current and Future Climate and Sea Levels: Drivers, Modeling, and Management
Adam Fuerst   Water Sciences  
Kira Hansen PhD Student Water Resources Improved Food-Water-Energy-Disease-Land Nexus from Compact Bed Plasticulture for Fresh Produce
Israel Ojo   Precision Agricultural Engineering  
Diderot Saintilma MS Student   Vegetable Horticulture Utilizing Warm Season Cover Crops in Florida Vegetable Production 
Moonwon Soh PhD Student Ag Economics Multi-conservation Practice Adoption
Kira Sorochkina PhD Student Soil Microbiology Nitrogen Fixation in Agroecosystem Biological Soil Crusts
Nirmal Timilsina MS Student  Weed Science Pre-emergent (residual) herbicide use in citrus - Environmental fate and potential impacts on tree health and productivity.  
Ruby Tiwari PhD Student Weed Science

Evaluating the strategies to improve pre-emergent herbicide efficacy and crop safety in vegetable plasticulture production.

 
Vinay Vijayakumar PhD Student  Precision Agricultural Engineering Autonomous smart sprayer for precision weed management using machine vision and Artificial Intelligence 
Salih Yilmaz PhD Student Citrus Pathology Working on Phloem-limited Pathogens in Economically Important Crops in Florida

FORMER STUDENTS

NameTitleProgramResearch Topic
Timothy Ayankojo PhD Student Soil Science Irrigation and Nitrogen Management in Tomato Production Using SmartIrrigation Scheduling Model
Shahrzad Bodaghi PhD Student Plant Physiology Evaluation of Scion-rootstock Interaction in Response to HLB
Susmita Gaire MS Student Plant Physiology Preventing Young Trees from Psyllids and Infection with Clas through Use of Protective Netting
Biwek Gairhe MS Student Weed Science Glyphosate in Florida Citrus Production System: Environmental Fate and Effects on Citrus Health
Shirin Ghatrehsamani PhD Student Precision Ag Simulation of Heat and Canopy of Disease-infected Trees Inside Mobile Heat Treatment Canopy Cover
Sudip Kunwar MS Student Plant Physiology Evaluation of Different Citrus Rootstocks’ Response to HLB in Large-scale Commercial Field Trial
Clayton Nevins PhD Student Soil Microbiology Investigating Biological Soil Crusts and Nutrient Availability in Citrus Agroecosystems
Sameer Pokhrel MS Student Plant Physiology Comparison of Field Performance of Citrus Trees on Rootstocks Propagated by Seedlings, Cuttings, and Tissue Culture
David Toole MS Student Soil Microbiology Bioinformatic Techniques to Determine Soil Microbial Functions
Jessica Torres Velez PhD Student Citrus Pathology Evaluate transport, dynamics, and efficacy of therapeutic treatments, applied in citrus trees through novel delivery methods, for management of Candidatus liberibacter asiaticus, the bacteria associated with Huanglongbing.

Dr. Kelly Morgan
Soil and Water Sciences
Professor

Publications

Research (EDIS)

Extension (Google Scholar)

2015_Roka_F_465x581

Dr. Fritz Roka
Agricultural Economics
Former Associate Professor

Publications

Extension (EDIS)

Dr. Phillip Williams
Vegetable Horticulture
Former Assistant Professor

Website

Publications

Extension (EDIS)

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Dr. Monica Ozores-Hampton
Vegetable Horticulture
Former Associate Professor

Publications

Extension (EDIS)

Research (Google Scholar)

2015_Stansly_P_465x581

Dr. Phil Stansly
Entomology
Professor (deceased)

Publications

Extension (EDIS)

Research (Google Scholar)

Dr. Bob Rouse, Associate Professor

Dr. Robert (Bob) Rouse
Citrus Horticulture
Retired Associate Professor

Publications

Extension (EDIS)