Director, Agronomy Seed Farm

North Dakota State University   Fargo, ND   Full-time     Farming / Fishing / Forestry
Posted on July 3, 2024
Apply Now

Description & Details:

The North Dakota Agricultural Experiment Station (NDAES) is seeking applicants for the NDSU Agronomy Seed Farm (ASF) Director in Casselton, ND. The incumbent is administratively responsible to the Director of the NDAES. The ASF produces foundation seed for North Dakota seedsmen and cooperates in research efforts of the NDAES scientists located at the main station in Fargo. The main station scientists' research and outreach efforts focus on evaluating and developing new crop varieties and providing data on varieties grown under eastern North Dakota growing conditions.

The ASF's foundation seed production provides seedstocks for the certified seed industry. It serves as a springboard for nearly all crop production in the state that relies on public breeding programs. The ability to produce adequate foundation seed is an imperative step in providing improved varieties from NDSU plant breeding programs to producers. The ASF is self-financed entirely by the sale of the seed it produces.

Position Responsibilities:

The incumbent is responsible for producing breeder and foundation grade seed and assisting in coordinating and distributing new varieties through the NDSU Foundation Seedstocks program housed in the Department of Plant Sciences, NDSU. The incumbent is also responsible for budget preparation, controlling expenditures of station funds, recruiting staff, and making salary and promotion recommendations for personnel employed at the ASF. The incumbent shall create an environment that fosters collegiality and must have the ability to work in a multicultural setting.

The incumbent is expected to work closely with the NDSU Foundation Seedstocks Program Director to plan, grow, and distribute seed increases. The incumbent must also interact with main station scientists to support their research programs. This responsibility includes seedbed preparation, crop removal, and salvage of materials on the Dalrymple Experimental Plot adjacent to the ASF and Prosper Research Site, located about 15 miles northeast of the ASF. The incumbent is expected to work closely with the leader of the New Crops project in the Department of Plant Sciences in assigning research plot land at the Dalrymple Experimental Plot and the Prosper Research Site.

The incumbent will prepare an annual report for the NDAES Director's office and the Agronomy Seed Farm Council for public dissemination. The incumbent is also expected to cooperate with the National Weather Service in providing weather data collected at the Agronomy Seed farm and with the Spring Wheat Quality Advisory Council to produce spring wheat grow-outs for quality evaluation.

The incumbent is expected to provide educational program support on pedigree seed production and conditioning. The incumbent will also maintain public relations efforts with community members, including providing facilities, hospitality, and tours for annual meetings or groups upon request of the Agronomy Seed Farm Council, the Director of the NDAES, or others.

Minimum Qualifications:
  • An earned B.S. degree in Plant Sciences, Agronomy, or a related field
  • Two years minimum past the degree with working experience in producing certified seed
  • Working experience in the production and conditioning of certified seed
  • Working experience in operating and maintaining large-scale farm equipment, including familiarity with precision agriculture and auto-guidance equipment
  • Working experience in producing cereals and soybean in the Midwest U.S.
  • Proven oral and written communication skills and demonstrated ability to interact with farmers, agribusiness people, main station scientists, and the local community daily
  • Ability to secure a certified Commercial Pesticide Applicator's License
  • Ability to secure a Commercial Driver's License
  • Ability to work collaboratively in a multidisciplinary team environment
  • Demonstrated supervisory skills
Preferred Qualifications:
  • An earned M.S. degree in Plant Sciences, Agronomy, or a related field
  • Administrative experience
  • Experience managing budgets
  • Familiar with crops and crop rotations in eastern North Dakota
  • Working experience in conducting purity and germination analyses in a seed laboratory
Salary :

The position offers a competitive salary that is commensurate with experience. Housing and utilities are provided at the station for the director and family. The university offers a comprehensive benefits package that includes a retirement plan and full coverage for family health insurance. More information on the benefits package can be found at .

Application Deadline :

The initial screening of applicants will begin on July 26, 2024, and continue until a suitable candidate is selected. Applications received by the screening date will be fully considered.

Special Instructions to Applicants:

Applicants must submit:
  • A one-page cover letter stating how the candidate might meet the minimum qualifications
  • A detailed curriculum vitae
  • Contact information (i.e., names, phone numbers, institutional addresses, and email addresses) of three current references from the most recent positions held.
Local Community:

The Agronomy Seed Farm is a self-financed station comprising 735 acres of state-owned land plus 300 acres of leased land. It is located approximately two miles from Casselton in southeast North Dakota. Casselton is a community of 2,500 people with an active business environment and good schools surrounded by progressive intensive crop agriculture. Casselton is 20 miles from Fargo-Moorhead, a community of over 225,000 people, with North Dakota State University, Minnesota State University Moorhead, and Concordia College as major educational institutions.


NDSU offers a comprehensive benefits package which includes single or family health insurance coverage with premiums paid for by the university - with an effective date for new employees the first of the month following date of hire. Other benefits include: wellness benefits, basic life insurance, retirement plan, tuition waiver, annual leave, EAP, sick leave and holiday pay. Optional benefits include: supplemental life, dental, vision, long-term care insurance, flexible spending account, and supplemental retirement plans.

About Us:

North Dakota State University is distinctive as a student focused, land-grant, research university. We educate leaders who solve national and global challenges by providing affordable access to an excellent education that combines teaching and research in a rich learning environment.

NDSU is in the highest Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education, R1, granted to the top research institutions in the country.

NDSU has offices across the state of North Dakota, and the main campus is in Fargo, on the Minnesota border. Along with Moorhead, Minnesota, Fargo forms one of the largest metropolitan centers between Minneapolis and Seattle. The community is consistently ranked as one of the best places to live.

No Smoking Notice :

As an employer, the State of North Dakota prohibits smoking in all places of state employment in accordance with N.D.C.C. § 23-12-10.

EO/AA Statement:

North Dakota State University is an Equal Opportunity employer and all qualified applicants will receive consideration for employment without regard to age, color, gender expression/identity, genetic information, marital status, national origin, participation in lawful off-campus activity, physical or mental disability, pregnancy, public assistance status, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, spousal relationship to current employee, or veteran status, as applicable.

Diversity Statement:

NDSU strives to be a community of belonging, recognizing unique differences as strengths of our university. We seek to recruit and retain a diverse workforce that supports a community in which diverse populations and perspectives will know and learn from one another. NDSU values candidates who are committed to our core values of respect, inclusivity, community, creativity, excellence, impact, innovation, integrity, resilience, responsiveness, and transformation. Successful candidates will be committed to and help advance our strategic goal to create and maintain an open and respectful environment to promote inclusivity and diversity as a cornerstone of education, research, and outreach.

Veteran's Preference Notice:

This position is subject to North Dakota Veteran's Preference requirements.

Reasonable Accommodation Information:

North Dakota State University is committed to providing access and reasonable accommodation in its services, programs, activities, education, and employment for individuals with disabilities. To request disability accommodation in the application process, please contact Human Resources at 701-231-8961 or .