The University of Wisconsin-Madison Division of Extension welcomes two new Outreach Specialists

The University of Wisconsin-Madison Division of Extension welcomes two new Outreach Specialists, Allen Pyle and Lauren Mortensen, positioned to amplify outreach and education for Wisconsin’s horticulture community.

Allen is a horticulture and entomology expert with a strong focus on herbaceous ornamental perennials, native plants, plant propagation, annual flowers, vegetables, and Integrated Pest Management (IPM). His career includes 18 years in a high-tech wholesale plant propagation company, concentrating on perennial program development. He worked as a staff horticulturist with catalog, online, and retail garden customers for four years. His latest 5 years were leading R&D endeavors for a lawn and garden company focused on natural-based lawn and garden products. Allen holds a Bachelor of Science in Horticulture with high honors and a Master of Science in Entomology, both from Michigan State University. Allen will be based out of UW-Green Bay.

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Lauren’s background includes teaching science and agriculture at the middle school, high school, undergraduate, and graduate level in both public and academic settings. Prior to her current role, Lauren taught in the Department of Horticulture at University of Wisconsin-Madison and at Texas A&M University on topics including environment of horticultural plants, trees and shrubs for sustainable landscapes, organic soil fertility and pest management, plant production in a changing climate, and perennial fruit production. In addition to her teaching roles, she served for United States Agency for International Development (USAID) as well as the North Central Region Sustainable Agriculture and Research Education (NCR-SARE) program. Lauren will be based out of UW-Platteville.

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The Extension Agriculture Institute connects Wisconsin’s agriculture and horticulture communities to university research. The five program areas; Agriculture Water Quality, Crops and Soils, Dairy and Livestock, Farm Management, and Horticulture provide resources that promote economic and environmental sustainability in Wisconsin.  Learn more about these program areas at: 

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