MIAMI —Dr. Mary Booth has been named chairperson of the Agriculture Department at Northeastern Oklahoma A&M College.

Booth has extensive experience in higher education, farm and ranch management, and agriculture finance. She joins NEO after serving as the Vice President of First National Bank & Trust Company of Miami, where she specialized in agricultural lending.

“I am excited to welcome Dr. Mary Booth as the new chair of the agriculture department,” said Dr. Bethene Fahnestock, Vice President for Academic Affairs. “Dr. Booth is committed to maintaining the strong traditions of the NEO Agriculture Department and to creating a vision for the future of the agriculture department as a national leader.

“I look to working with Dr. Booth as the leader of NEO agriculture programs”

Booth grew up in Madison, Minnesota, and attended college at South Dakota State University in Brookings, South Dakota.

Upon completion of her Bachelors in Animal Science with a Business option in 1983, she began a master’s program.

During the program, she agreed to serve as the head coach of the livestock judging team and complete her doctoral degree. She received her Ph.D. in Animal Science and Swine Nutrition in 1990 and served for five years as an Assistant Professor of Animal Science, livestock judging team coach, and as a recruiter for the agriculture department.

In 1995, she married C.K. Sonny Booth, a purebred livestock and real estate auctioneer, who is a member of the NEO Alumni Hall of Fame and the NEO Agriculture Hall of Fame.

For the next several years, Dr. Booth traveled with her husband to auctions, raised their daughter Rachel, and managed the family’s 80-acre cattle farm.

In 2004, she became the principal/teacher at Green County Christian School in Miami.

For the past eight years, she was a vice president at First National.

Booth’s broad experience in agriculture is matched by her enthusiasm for higher education and the future of the agriculture program.

“Since I left South Dakota State University, I’ve missed the culture of college life and being involved in the education process,” said Dr. Booth. “My first priority is to continue recruiting strong students and getting those students in front of our business and community groups. I also want to provide a strong academic transition leadership in order best prepare our students who transfer.

“We have a chance to build some strong team unity with the new faculty arrivals and I aim to continue developing the nationally-known tradition of agricultural excellence at NEO.”

Dr. Booth is active in several area organizations, including Bright Futures – Miami, Miami Kiwanis, Leadership Miami, Miami FFA and Ottawa County 4-H.

She and her husband live in Miami.

For more information on NEO Agriculture, contact Gentry Hutchison at gentrsh@neo.edu.