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Photo Marvin Burns
Dr. Marvin Burns
Langston University


Dr. Marvin Burns was born in Ty Ty, Georgia and was raised on a farm. He received a B.S. in Agronomy from Fort Valley State University, an M.S. in Agronomy from the University of Wisconsin, and a Ph.D. in Plant Breeding and Pathology from the University of Arizona.

After receiving his doctorate, Dr. Burns served as Head of the Department of Plant Science at Prairie View A&M in Texas for four years. In 1978, he moved to Tuskege University in Alabama and served as Head of the Department of Agricultural Sciences for the next 10 years.

In 1988, Dr. Burns was a Visiting Professor at the University of Delaware and in 1989, he was a Visiting Scientist in the Discovery Group at American Cyanamid in Princeton, NJ. During both of these Visiting Professor positions, Dr. Burns learned valuable biotechnology skills and techniques that he later used to establish the first biotechnology laboratory at Tuskege University.

In 1991, Dr. Burns embarked upon a long and illustrious international career when he became the Plant Breeder/ Pathologist with the RAV II Extension and Research Project in Zaïre (now Congo) for two years. He then moved to Cameroon where he served as the Plant Breeder/Pathologist with the Root and Fiber Crop research program for two years. Dr. Burns has also had short-term assignments in Guyana, El Salvador, Burkina Faso, Chad, Zaïre, South Africa, Nigeria, Liberia and Rwanda.

In 1995, Dr. Burns left Tuskege University to become the Associate Administrator of Extension at Langston University. In 1997, he was named the Acting Dean for Research and Extension and in 1998 was named the Dean of the newly formed school of Agriculture and Applied Sciences.

Dr. Burns is married and has two sons. In his limited leisure time, he enjoys tennis, golf and fishing.


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Last Updated: July 24, 2002