Lenssen Named Iowa State Soybean Production Systems Agronomist

AMES, Iowa  — Andrew (Andy) Lenssen joined Iowa State University (ISU) on Oct. 1 as a soybean systems agronomist with teaching, research and extension responsibilities. Lenssen comes to Iowa State from Sidney, Mont., where he was a research ecologist and lead scientist for USDA dryland research.

“Andy has a wealth of experience in agronomy and ecology that will be very beneficial to Iowa,” said Kendall Lamkey, chair, ISU Department of Agronomy. “His most recent experience as a research ecologist in Montana broadens our extension, research and teaching portfolio here at Iowa State.”

Lenssen has nearly two decades of experience conducting large-scale, long-term cropping system studies that he describes as very collaborative – often times having worked with agronomists, ecologists, soil scientists, plant pathologists and entomologists. He will be taking a systems approach as he addresses the primary issues of Iowa soybean producers in his research and programming.

“Andy’s experiences working with researchers and producers to evaluate and improve complex production systems is a great asset for extension,” said John Lawrence, director, ISU Extension Agriculture and Natural Resources. “He has a proven record of pulling together effective teams that will help us identify profitable and sustainable soybean production systems.”

Developing new collaborations will be necessary to address and solve Iowa soybean production problems and improve or increase soybean production sustainability, both economic and environmental sustainability, Lenssen said. His systems approach will look at the effects of genotype, inputs, tillage, crop rotation and other aspects related to growing soybeans in Iowa. Lenssen said this will provide answers to deeper questions than just crop profitability.

“Collaborative studies gain more useful knowledge on complex interactions,” Lenssen said. “It takes a team to understand the interconnectedness of our actions, and field research to look at many of the bigger issues.”

Lenssen earned doctorate and master’s degree in agronomy at Kansas State University and a bachelor’s degree in agronomy at Cornell University. When away from work he enjoys fly fishing, tennis and downhill skiing.