Winifred-Asbjornson Plant Sciences Chair


Before receiving the Endowed Chair position at Montana State University, Dr. Venugopal Mendu was an Associate Professor at Texas
Tech University. He received his BS in agriculture and MS in genetics and plant breeding from A.N.G.R Agricultural University in India and a PhD from the University of Kentucky in plant physiology/molecular biology. He is a highly productive researcher who utilizes genomic, genetic, molecular, genome editing, and breeding technologies in his research program. The Montana Plant Science Chair is a position funded in part by the cereal grain industry to support expanded research capacity critical to Montana grain growers.

Recognizing that the depth of research at Montana State University must expand to meet current and future crop science challenges, leaders of the Montana Grains Foundation partnered with the MSU Alumni Foundation to perpetually endow the first Chair in the 120 year history of the College of Agriculture. More than 60 Montana grain producers, along with the Foundation, the Montana Grain Growers Association, the Montana Wheat & Barley Committee and several agribusinesses around the state donated in support of the endowed chair.


  • Background Information
  • Donate Online  – MSU Alumni Foundation donor page; please indicate your gift is for the Plant Sciences Chair
  • Montana Endowment Tax Credit – Contributions to this endowment by individuals, corporations, small business corporations, partnerships, and limited liability companies are eligible for the METC.