T. Carlton Blalock, former CES director and National 4-H Hall of Fame laureate, has died

Dr. T. Carlton Blalock, 89, who served as director of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences’ Cooperative Extension Service from 1978 to 1981, passed away Sept. 16.

Blalock also served as North Carolina’s State 4-H Leader from 1964 to 1970. A lifetime 4-H’er himself, he was inducted into the National 4-H Hall of Fame in 2006. In 2011 he received the prestigious Watauga Medal, N.C. State University’s highest non-academic honor. And this year, during Extension’s Centennial celebration, he was named one of 11 recipients of the inaugural Extension Legend award.

During an illustrious career of agricultural leadership, he also served as president of the 4-H Development Fund and the Cooperative Extension Service Fund and as executive vice president of the Tobacco Growers Association of North Carolina.

Blalock grew up in a Master Farm Family in Lucama, Wilson County. There he participated in 4-H as a youth, serving as president on the local and county levels. A World War II veteran, he earned N.C. State University bachelor’s (1948) and master’s (1952) degrees in animal husbandry, as well as a doctorate (1963) in extension administration from the University of Wisconsin. He began working as an Extension dairy specialist in 1951.

His many career honors and accolades include 1990 Man of the Year in Service to North Carolina and Virginia Agriculture, the 1981 Epsilon Sigma Phi Distinguished Service Award and the 1979 USDA Superior Service Award. The latter award recognized his early-1970s pioneering activities in North Carolina’s insect pest management education programs.

Terri Leith

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