Alex grew up on a small beef farm in northeastern Maryland. He was very active in 4-H throughout his youth. His primary projects were beef, field crops, tractor operation, woodworking, and marksmanship. He was always interested in the business side of agriculture as well as the production aspects.
He received his BS in Agricultural Economics from Virginia Tech. His main focus was on farm management and agricultural financial management. He received his MS in Ag Econ from Ohio State with a concentration in farm management. His Ph.D. is from Virginia Tech where his research centered on retirement planning strategies for agricultural producers and small business owners.
Alex has taught a wide variety of college courses at Ohio State, NC State, Ferrum College, and Virginia Tech for the past 25 years. Always an academic generalist, he was worked in several academic departments over his career. A majority of his career has been in the field of Agricultural Economics, but he taught personal financial management in the Department of Apparel, Housing & Resource Management for 5 years. Alex taught part-time in the Dairy Science department for 4 years before joining the faculty full-time in August 2016.
The courses he has taught are mainly related to the business and financial side of agriculture. He jokes that, “if it involves a dollar sign, he teaches it.” In the Dairy Science department he teaches Dairy Enterprise Management, Entrepreneurship in Animal Agriculture, and Advanced Dairy Management Evaluation (co-taught with Dr. Gonzalo Ferreira). He also teaches Personal Financial Planning for the university.
Other courses he has taught include Ag Financial Management, Farm Management, Small Business Management, and several courses in Personal Financial Management. He also works with several courses in the Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine. He has served as an extension agent and an extension specialist (personal/farm financial management) for Virginia Cooperative Extension. Alex was an assistant coach for the 2004 and 2007 national championship teams in the American Express Financial Planning Invitational.
Aside from teaching, Alex continues to work with regional and national agricultural lenders and agricultural organizations such as the North American Farmers Direct Marketing Association (NAFDMA), the Mid-Atlantic Horticulture Short Course (MAHSC), the Farm Financial Standards Task Force, as well as the FFA and Farm Bureau Young Farmers in the mid-Atlantic region. He has helped to train Farm Credit personnel through his work with Farm Credit University since its inception.
Outside of work, Alex spends his time restoring a 1943 Farmall H tractor, target shooting, renovating on his old house, and woodworking. Alex and his brothers operate a small BBQ business in northern MD – partially to make money, but mostly to eat BBQ with friends!