Dr. Dawn Mellion Patin served as the Vice-Chancellor for Southern University Cooperative Extension since 2016. She developed the Center’s Small Farmer Agricultural Leadership Training Institute, an intensive leadership development program that guides small, minority, socially-disadvantaged and limited-resource farmers through the process of becoming competitive agricultural entrepreneurs.
Her work in the field of agriculture has provided her with the opportunity to serve as a panel manager for the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA); chair of the Southern Region- Agricultural and Natural Resources Program Leaders Committee; grant committee member for the USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA); 1890 representative on the National Extension Disaster Education Network Executive Committee and historian for the National Society of Minorities in Agricultural, Natural Resources, and Related Sciences (MANRRS) organization.
She earned a bachelor’s degree in Plant and Soil Sciences, a master’s degree in Educational Agriculture, both from Southern University, and a doctoral degree in Agricultural and Life Sciences Education from Iowa State University.
She has received the SU Ag Center’s Outstanding Specialist Award, Tuskegee University’s Distinguished Service Award, the Association of Extension Administrators Excellence in Extension Award, and the USDA NIFA Cooperative Extension System Outstanding Leadership Award. In February 2019 Patin received the T. M. Campbell Leadership Award during Tuskegee University’s 127th Annual Farmers Conference in Montgomery, Alabama. Dr. Mellion-Patin also received the 2018 George Washington Carver Distinguished Service Award from Iowa State University’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences. The George Washington Carver Distinguished Service Award was established in 2005. The award honors distinguished College of Agriculture and Life Sciences alumni who have demonstrated outstanding achievement or leadership by making significant, influential, or innovative contributions to society.