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May 28, 2024 11:28 pm

Maddox steps down from dean’s role at UMO

Dr. Sandy Maddox is stepping down from her role as dean of the University of Mount Olive School of Agriculture and Biological Sciences effective May 31.

MOUNT OLIVE — Dr. Sandy Maddox, dean of the School of Agriculture and Biological Sciences at the University of Mount Olive, will step down from her role effective May 31.

Maddox has been with the university for more than 15 years and has served as the founding dean of the school since 2019. She will continue to work with the university as a project specialist on the initiation and completion of several agricultural-related projects and initiatives within the School of Agriculture and Biological Sciences.

“I feel so blessed to have had the opportunity to serve as dean of the School of Agriculture and Biological Sciences at the University of Mount Olive,” Maddox said.  “It has been an honor working with UMO administration, faculty, and staff, as well as agency personnel, farmers, and agribusinesses in our region and across the state to build an agriculture program at the university. The highlight of my time at UMO has been the opportunity to teach, mentor, and support the students that have come through the agriculture program. I have been given the chance to be a part of seeing these young men and women mature and become leaders and servants in agriculture and in their communities, and I am forever grateful for that opportunity.”

Maddox’s extensive career in agriculture spans over four decades. As the founding dean for the School of Agriculture and Biological Sciences, Maddox has served as assistant professor of agricultural education, director of the Lois G. Britt Agribusiness Center, chair for the Division of Agriculture, and currently as dean for the School of Agriculture and Biological Sciences.

Prior to arriving at UMO, Maddox was employed by both North Carolina State University and the N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. She worked in the Soil Science Department at NCSU in research, was a horticultural agent and county extension director for Cooperative Extension in Pender County, served as the superintendent of the Horticultural Crops Research Station in Sampson County and lastly served as the director of the Division of Research Stations with NCDA, retiring from state service in 2007.

Maddox has been a member of the Wayne County Cooperative Extension Advisory Board, Wayne Extension Community Association Advisory Board, Tobacco Farm Life Museum Board of Directors, participated in the Karl Best Leadership program, Leadership Wayne and much more.

“Sandy’s work ethic is second to none and her visionary leadership has allowed students to take part in building the agricultural program at UMO into what exists today,” said UMO President Dr. H. Edward Croom. “Her passion and drive to make a positive difference in the lives of so many has made a profound impact at UMO and throughout the agricultural community both near and far. While we hate to see her step down from the dean’s role, we certainly appreciate her willingness to continue to help us amplify our agricultural footprint here at UMO and in the larger ag community in her new role as project specialist.

Croom noted that applications are currently being accepted for the dean’s position. More information can be found at Dean, School of Agriculture and Biological Sciences – University of Mount Olive ( “The next dean will certainly have big shoes to fill, so we need to get started in order to fill this pivotal role for our campus community,” Croom said.

— From University of Mount Olive Public Relations