The University of Minnesota named professor Brian Buhr the interim dean for the College of Food, Agricultural and Natural Resource Sciences on Wednesday.
He heads the Department of Applied Economics. Buhr will replace outgoing dean Allen Levine, who announced last month he was stepping down to focus on his research.
Buhr will also serve as interim director for the Minnesota Agricultural Experiment Station when he replaces Levine at the end of August, according to a University news release.
The search for a full-time dean will begin later this summer. College of Veterinary Medicine Dean Trevor Ames will lead the national search.
Serving as interim dean will give Buhr the opportunity to see how the role fits, he said.
“I’m going to take advantage of my time here,” Buhr said.
Two University colleges and a department merged in 2006 to create CFANS. About 2,600 students were enrolled in the college this spring.
Buhr’s colleagues said his experience and connections make him a good fit for the position.
Growing up on a farm gave Buhr a deep understanding of the agricultural community, said agribusiness management professor Mike Boland.
“Being a farm kid,” Boland said, “he can walk the talk.”
Marin Bozic, assistant professor of dairy foods marketing economics, said Buhr encouraged him to apply for the teaching position and helped him acclimate to the University when Bozic started working.
“I know his doors are always open,” Bozic said.
Buhr is a “terrific choice” for the position, said Beth Virnig, a professor who works with him at the University’s Food Policy Research Center.
“I can’t think of anybody that I would be happier to work with,” she said.