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Donald V. Waddington, Ph.D.

Director, 1989-1991

Donald V. Waddington earned his B.S. from Penn State in 1953, M.S. from Rutgers in 1960, and Ph.D. from the University of Massachusetts in 1964. He returned to Penn State in 1965 as an assistant professor and retired in 1991 as a professor emeritus of soil science. While at Penn State, Waddington's research focused on soil amendments and modification, nutrient availability and uptake, soil test calibration, nitrogen source evaluation, and surface characteristics of athletic fields, including methods to assess impact absorption properties and traction. He and colleague Jack Harper collaborated on studies related to the safety and playability of athletic field surfaces. “Those studies got a lot of mileage,” he says. “They were the first of their kind, more comprehensive than anything that had been done before.” Waddington has published his research results in scientific journals as well as publications for turfgrass managers. He is co-author of the book Turfgrass Soil Fertility and Chemical Problems: Assessment and Management.

During Waddington's Penn State tenure he taught more than 1,100 students in two-year turf management, four-year undergraduate, and graduate programs. Courses included soil physical and chemical properties, fertility, and weed control. For two years after retirement he continued to advise graduate students and teach courses in the two-year program.