Joseph Vargas Jr., Ph.D., is a professor of plant pathology at Michigan State University. He holds degrees from the University of Rhode Island, Oklahoma State University and the University of Minnesota. Vargas’ research focuses on turfgrass diseases and fungicide resistance and his university appointment includes 20% teaching, 50% research and 30% extension. Vargas’ excellence in the turfgrass industry has been well-documented through the numerous awards he has received, including the Michigan Turfgrass Foundation’s Meritorious Service Award, the GCSAA Distinguished Service Award and the USGA Green Section Award. In addition to participation in many state and regional turfgrass conferences around the United States, Vargas has lectured on multiple occasions at various turfgrass conferences throughout the world including Australia, Argentina, China, France, Germany, Ireland, England, Mexico, New Zealand, Malaysia, Spain, Austria, Japan, Korea, Portugal, Slovenia and South Africa. He has also published the most widely used turfgrass disease book entitled "Management of Turfgrass Diseases" and co authored two other books “Poa annua: Physiology, Culture, and Control of Annual Bluegrass” and “The Turf Problem Solver”. He has been a GCSAA faculty member since 1975 and he enjoys golf and hunting in his spare time.