Brian Deaton joins CFANR from Texas A&M. He started teaching Agriculture Economics and Agribusiness classes this past week. Including Deaton, that makes for a total of seven new faculty members in addition to our new Dean, Dr. Michael Blazier, who joined us July 1 from Louisiana State University.
Others included: Dr. Hamdi Zurqani- Assistant Professor GIS/Remote Sensing
Dr. Pradip Saud- Assistant Professor Biometrics/Statistics
Dr. Elena Rubino- Assistant Professor Human Dimensions/Communications
Mr. Ryan Askren- Research Associate with Five Oaks
Ms. Tiffany Osborne-Instructor of Wildlife
Ms. Lonni Davis-Instructor of Agriculture
Dr. Brian Deaton- Agricultural Economics/Agribusiness
Dr. Michael Blazier- Dean College of Forestry, Agriculture and Natural Resources / Director, Arkansas Forest Resources Center
By Lon Tegels
College of Forestry, Agriculture and Natural Resources
The University of Arkansas at Monticello
Arkansas Forest Resources Center
U of A System Division of Agriculture
Agriculture Economics Professor Hired at UAM
Professor Leaves Home State of Texas for Monticello
Trading Stocks for the Teaching in the Classroom
MONTICELLO, Arkansas — It’s taken a few years, but professionally Brian Deaton is stepping outside his comfort zone. For the first time in his life, the 44-year-old native of Texas has left his home state. Deaton and his family chose Monticello, Arkansas, to put down roots. Deaton decided it was time to get back to what he enjoys most: agricultural economics. Deaton started in August at the University of Arkansas at Monticello as an associate professor of agriculture. Deaton will be teaching Agribusiness and Agricultural Economics and will also contribute to the efforts of the University of Arkansas Division of Agriculture Cooperative Extension Service.
As a small child, Deaton grew up in Abilene, Texas. Deaton was exposed to farm life through his grandfather’s ranch in Sanderson, Texas. His grandfather got him interested in agriculture by giving him goats, sheep and peacocks. He says they even built a pole so the peacocks could escape the prey of nearby foxes.
Deaton eventually found his niche in high school at Cooper High School in Abilene. There he took advanced placement biology. Deaton initially wanted to be a veterinarian but soon discovered he enjoyed tinkering more with computers. He eventually went onto engineering school as an undergraduate at top-ranked Trinity University in San Antonio (2000). Deaton said he was a computer science major until his junior year. While at Trinity, during the internet bubble, he became interested in trading stocks. He then took a job as a financial analyst and programmer at a small firm and worked there for the next three years.
Deaton then headed to the Mays Business School at Texas A&M University, where he got his master’s degree in finance (2006). Initially, he planned to work in hedge funds and become a professional trader. His interest shifted to markets and information economics. A Ph.D. in Agriculture economics soon followed (2013).
Deaton next started teaching students at McMurry University, where his small class of students grew a $1-million portfolio into nearly $2 million in funds. He enjoyed teaching students how to manage money and risks. Deaton said, “when you can make money on anything, it’s pretty exciting.”
Deaton met his wife, Rebecca, in 2015. They had a commuter relationship. She was living in Garland, near Dallas, Texas, while he was in Abilene. It was a four-hour commute each way. Rebecca works for Children’s Relief International, where she helps educate, feed, and clothe children living in poverty. Since they got married, she has been doing most of her work remotely.
While his family enjoys the outdoors of Arkansas and what it has to offer, Deaton has a variety of hobbies. Besides going on family walks with his Catahoula dog, he enjoys hiking, cooking, and tabletop games. In true Texas fashion, he and his wife enjoy kicking up their heels with a two-step and line dance. Both enjoy country western dancing. Their next step is to scout Arkansas for a dancehall.
About the College of Forestry, Agriculture and Natural Resources and the Arkansas Forest Resources Center
The College of Forestry, Agriculture and Natural Resources, and the Arkansas Forest Resources Center, a University of Arkansas System Center of Excellence, brings together interdisciplinary expertise through a partnership between the University of Arkansas at Monticello and the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture. The College and Center are headquartered at the University of Arkansas at Monticello campus, but their programs range statewide with the mission of developing and delivering teaching, research, and extension programs that enhance and ensure the sustainability and productivity of forest-based natural resources and agricultural systems. Academic programs are delivered by the College of Forestry, Agriculture, and Natural Resources through the University of Arkansas at Monticello. Through the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture, research is administered by the Arkansas Agricultural Experiment Station, and extension and outreach activities are coordinated by the Arkansas Cooperative Extension Service.
The University of Arkansas at Monticello and the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture offer all of their programs to all eligible persons without regard to race, color, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin, religion, age, disability, marital or veteran status, genetic information, or any other legally protected status, and are Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employers.
About the Division of Agriculture
The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture’s mission is to strengthen agriculture, communities, and families by connecting trusted research to the adoption of best practices. Through the Agricultural Experiment Station and the Cooperative Extension Service, the Division of Agriculture conducts research and extension work within the nation’s historic land grant education system.
The Division of Agriculture is one of 20 entities within the University of Arkansas System. It has offices in all 75 counties in Arkansas and faculty on five system campuses.
The University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture offers all its Extension and Research programs and services without regard to race, color, sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, national origin, religion, age, disability, marital or veteran status, genetic information, or any other legally protected status, and is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer.