DAFVM Spotlight Employees

The administration for the Division of Agriculture, Forestry and Veterinary Medicine (DAFVM) spotlights two employees each month. All benefits-eligible professional and support staff employees within the Division qualify as part of the pool from which employees will be chosen. Highlighted employees will be randomly selected and given his or her choice of a $50 prize from DAFVM to be claimed from specific vendors at MSU. See Guidelines.
Directory Photo

Elvis Sykes
July 2019

Agriculture Technician
Black Belt Branch Experiment Station

Years in position: 16
Years at MSU: 16

Elvis Sykes has worked for the Black Belt Branch Experiment Station near Brooksville for almost 17 years doing anything that is necessary to keeping up with the property.

“My favorite part of what I do is spraying,” Elvis said. “I like the chemistry that goes along with mixing. If you have a 6 acre plot, and I have to spray Roundup, that is a 400 gallon tank, so I mix up a quart per acre.”

He says that one of the most important traits about his job is paying attention to all the safety and health regulations, especially when handling hazardous chemicals.
“I like the research aspect of my job,” Elvis said. “It continues to advance, and I continue to learn.”

In his free time, Elvis spends most of his time at his church where he sings and plays guitar. He also enjoys spending time with his family, especially his grandchildren.

Directory Photo

Redale Oswalt
July 2019

Facility Operations Technician
MS Horse Park

Years in Position: 5
Years at MSU: 5

Redale Oswalt is from Eupora and has been a Facility Operations Technician at the Mississippi Horse Park for five years.

Redale and two others are responsible for maintaining the facility, including equipment, grounds, barns, arenas and roads.

“The Horse Park is heavily used each year and had 145 days of activities in 2018,” Redale said. “The crew I am a part of is responsible for the setup and breakdown of all of these events.”

One of Redale’s favorite parts about his job is getting to utilize his versatile skillset in keeping up the facility.

In his spare time, he enjoys hunting and fishing.

  • The drawing for the DAFVM Staff Spotlight recognition will take place the last week of each month and be announced the first working day of the upcoming month.  Names are pulled randomly from a pre-populated Banner list.
  • To be the highlighted staff for any given month, the employee must have acceptable recent performance evaluations on file. Those evaluations will be reviewed prior to acknowledgement of the employee and awarding a prize. The evaluation itself will not be viewed but rather HRM will provide a general recommendation based on the employee’s past reviews.
  • The selected employees will be notified by letter from Dr. Greg Bohach, Vice President, DAFVM.
  • A required photo and a brief  interview of the recipients will be posted on the DAFVM Staff Council Web page www.dafvm.msstate.edu/advisory/spotlight/. This information will also be displayed on the monitors of the first floor of the Bost Building, as well as in other MSU locations and publications.
  • Each recipient can choose one of the following prizes:
    • $50 gift certificate to the University Florist
    • $50 gift certificate to the MAFES Sales Store
    • MSU apparel item ($50 value)

At each annual DAFVM Summer Celebration, the Staff Spotlight recipients from the previous year will be acknowledged. The DAFVM website will have an archive of all winners listed by month/date.

An employee cannot be chosen more than once during a two (2) year period.