Harry R. Hughes Center for Agro-Ecology

Hughes Center

Notice: Request for Proposals
Technical Study on Forests in Maryland

Who we are: The Harry R. Hughes Center for Agro-Ecology is a 501(c)(3) corporation affiliated with the University of Maryland College Park and the University System of Maryland.  Founded in 1999, the Center brings together diverse interests from the agricultural, forestry and environmental communities for the purpose of retaining Maryland's working landscapes and the industries they support while protecting and improving the health of the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries.

The Center works toward achieving its diverse mission through a three-pronged approach of scientific research, policy analysis, and outreach and education efforts.

Mission Statement: To provide leadership to promote environmentally sound and economically viable agriculture and forestry as Maryland's preferred land use through research, outreach and collaboration.

Statement on the passing of Nina Rodale Houghton

We are saddened by the loss of one of the Hughes Center’s cofounders and longtime board members, Mrs. Nina Rodale Houghton. A philanthropic leader, Mrs. Houghton was the initial contributor to the Harry R. Hughes Endowed Fellowship Fund, which supports exceptional undergraduate or graduate students at the University of Maryland. She also co-chaired the University of Maryland College of Agriculture and Natural Resources committee that led to the creation of the Hughes Center in 1999.

“Mrs. Houghton was key to the Center’s success. Her leadership and generosity will be fondly remembered,” said Dr. Kate Everts, director of the Hughes Center and the Wye Research and Education Center.

The charitableness of her husband, Arthur A. Houghton Jr., helped establish the Wye Research and Education Center and its Angus herd. After his death in 1990, new laboratories and administrative offices at WREC, which vastly expanded the scope of agricultural scientific inquiry at the University of Maryland, were named after Mr. Houghton. Mrs. Houghton carried on as a civic leader through trustee and board appointments to numerous public and private institutions.

Mission-Based Work

Scientific Research

Since its founding in 1999, the Center has funded more than 70 research projects totaling more than $10 million in funding. Research funded by the Hughes Center has changed agricultural practices globally. Maryland farmers are now considered national leaders in conservation practices — in part because of the research funded and policy recommendations provided by the Hughes Center. Today, the Center continues to develop scientific research to address the needs of Maryland's communities.

Discover more here

Policy Analysis

As a member of the Advisory Committee for the Governor’s Agricultural Forum and Strategic Plan, the Center played an important role in helping to plan the listening sessions that elicited input on agricultural and forestry issues from over 500 Maryland citizens, and ultimately in the formation of the 2006 Statewide Plan for Agricultural Policy and Resource Management.

As a member of the Governor's Commission on Protecting the Chesapeake Bay through Sustainable Forestry, the Center helped to shape Maryland's Strategic Forest Resource Plan for 2006, which recognizes that Maryland's forests should be managed with an eye towards the multitude of services they provide, including clean air, clean water, diverse habitat for wildlife, economic return, and recreational opportunities, among others.

Education and Outreach

The Center continues to expand its Education and Outreach efforts in Maryland.  Center staff members periodically brief the House Environmental Matters Committee and the Senate Committee on Education, Health, and Environmental Affairs; hold workshops on research topics such as the availability of tools to preserve working landscapes; make presentations to local governments and community groups; and participate in several interdisciplinary networks through the University of Maryland.

Learn more here

Support Us


Want to support the Center? The Harry R. Hughes Center for Agro-Ecology, Inc. is a 501(c)3 affiliated foundation with the University of Maryland College Park. Our Form 990 is available online. Donations are tax deductible to the extent allowed by law. Call Nancy Nunn, Assistant Director, at 410.827.6202 or e-mail her at nnunn@umd.edu for details on how to make your donation.

Donations can be made online to the Harry R. Hughes Endowed Fellowship Fund by clicking here.


Would you prefer to donate your time, resources, or expertise? We are always seeking volunteers to assist with event planning and execution, fundraising efforts, mailings, and general Center operations. Please send an e-mail to agroecology@umd.edu or call 410.827.6202 with your specific interests/skills and availability.

Contact Us and Annual Report

Harry R. Hughes Center for Agro-Ecology, Inc.
PO Box 169
124 Wye Narrows Drive
Queenstown, MD 21658

Phone: 410.827.6202
FAX: 410.827.9039

View our 2018-19 Annual Report

Center Staff