Gold Medal Awards Presented

Thursday, August 02, 2018
Gold Medal Awards Presented

Thomas H. Marek, Hongwei Xin, and Fedro Zazueta were recently honored by ASABE with Gold Medal awards, among the highest honors bestowed by the organization. The awards were presented at a luncheon ceremony held during the 2018 ASABE Annual International Meeting, in Detroit.

Thomas Marek, PE, is the 2018 recipient of the John Deere Gold Medal for his outstanding contributions to the advancement of lysimetry, evapotranspiration, irrigation system technologies, and water resource management in agriculture. Marek is a senior research engineer with Texas A&M AgriLife Research in Amarillo. There he provides direction and leadership of the irrigation program, develops, assesses, and integrates new production technologies into research applications for irrigated agriculture. He also provides engineering leadership for integrated multidisciplinary research and demonstration activities .  He has a distinguished record of performance in developing and implementing new crop production systems and has integrated new and advanced technologies and tools for Texas High Plains irrigated producers. 

Hongwei Xin, ASABE Fellow, is the recipient of the 2018 Cyrus Hall McCormick Jerome Case Gold Medal award for exceptional engineering and administrator achievements in advancing animal agriculture worldwide. Xin is a distinguished professor in agricultural and biosystems engineering and animal science at Iowa State University. He also serves as the assistant dean for research in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, as director of the Egg Industry Center, and as the interim director of the Iowa Nutrient Research Center, all at Iowa State University. Xin’s research and extension endeavors include ensuring welfare of poultry breeding stocks during long-distance shipment. He has worked to help the poultry industry achieve environmentally friendly manure management by filling information gaps on manure production, nutrient profiles, and air emissions. The heat and moisture production data on poultry, swine and their housing systems published by Xin and his team have been adopted worldwide in the design and operation of modern animal production facilities.

Fedro Zazueta, PE, is recipient of the Massey-Ferguson Educational Gold Medal for pioneering and outstanding contributions in agricultural information technology and engineering education worldwide. Zazueta is an emeritus professor of agricultural and biological engineering and the office of information technology (IT) at the University of Florida (UF) in Gainesville. He is a tireless and effective professional who has made outstanding contributions towards engineering education locally and globally by promoting the use of IT in education. He is amongst the earliest adopters to teach distance courses using IT. He conducted numerous workshops in state, national and international professional meetings, training courses to industry and government agencies on topics related to IT in education and agriculture. Acknowledged as an international leader in the area, Zazueta has presented over 60 keynote and invited speeches at international conferences. One notable technical achievement of Zazueta’s career is the creation of a university-level online course development unit combining principles from project management, process reengineering, and instructional design.

The American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE) is an international scientific and educational organization dedicated to the advancement of engineering applicable to agricultural, food, and biological systems. Further information on the Society can be obtained by contacting ASABE at (269) 429-0300, emailing, or visiting