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CFWE’s Regions Professor Tom Gallagher retiring

By March 28, 2024No Comments
Tom Gallagher receives a certificate from Emmett F. Thompson Dean of the CFWE, Janaki Alavalapati.

Janaki Alavalapati, the Emmett F. Thompson Dean of the CFWE, presents Tom Gallagher with the Auburn University Certificate of Emeritus.

The College of Forestry, Wildlife and Environment (CFWE) at Auburn University has announced the retirement of Tom Gallagher, the college’s Regions Professor of forest operations.

Gallagher has been a faculty member in the college since 2003, where he served as an expert on timber biomass harvesting methods, forest surveying, wood procurement issues and forestry in the private sector. In recognition of more than 10 years of sustained meritorious service, Gallagher will retire as Emeritus Professor.

His teaching philosophy focused on delivering information that must be processed and practiced while accommodating each student’s learning style. Gallagher is credited with teaching or co-teaching nine classes and advising 16 senior projects in his 20 years at the CFWE. He also led courses in the Forestry Summer Practicum at the Solon Dixon Forestry Education Center from 2005-23, where CFWE students receive hands-on learning opportunities.

During his tenure with the CFWE, Gallagher served as advisor of the Forestry Club and was honored five times with the Forestry Club Teacher of the Year Award in 2007, 2010, 2019, 2022 and 2023. He also received the Harold E. Christian Award for Teaching twice in 2009 and 2020, and the Harry Murphy Award for Excellence in Advising in 2019. Gallagher was also recognized by the Society of American Foresters (SAF) as a fellow in 2022.

Gallagher’s research at the CFWE included projects in harvesting and transportation of biomass for consumption at alternative fuel plants, improved utilization, forest fragmentation, timber stand improvement, improving forest health and reducing fuel loads. He collaborated on 43 grants totaling $30.6 million and 55 published papers and lectures. Gallagher also gave more than 100 invited talks at the regional, national and international levels.

He received his master’s degree and doctorate in forestry at Virginia Tech before arriving at Auburn.

In his retirement, Gallagher plans to travel, spend time with his grandchildren and participate in a favorite hobby, car shows.

“Dr. Gallagher has been an invaluable member of the college,” said Janaki Alavalapati, Emmett F. Thompson Dean of the CFWE. “His dedication to fostering our students’ professional development and industry engagement enhanced the forestry program and elevated our student experience. We thank Tom for his passionate service and wish him the best in his retirement.”

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