New Ag Department Pesticides Manager Appointed

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John McHugh. Courtesy photo.

Hawai‘i Entomologist John McHugh, Ph.D., has been appointed as the new program manager of the Pesticides Branch of the Hawai‘i Department of Agriculture.

His duties will include overseeing the program compliance office, chemical analysis section, registration and education section, case preparation section and statewide enforcement offices of the pesticides branch.

His appointment is effective Jan.1, 2018. He succeeds Thomas Matsuda, who will retire on
Dec. 31, 2017.


“Dr. McHugh is known for his aptitude in solving a variety of agricultural problems that affect Hawai‘i farmers,” said Scott Enright, chairperson of the Hawai‘i Board of Agriculture. “The department is truly fortunate to have his experience, expertise and dedication in helping to move agriculture forward in our state.”

Dr. McHugh received his bachelor’s degree in general tropical agriculture and a master’s degree in horticulture from the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa. He also received a Ph.D. in entomology which focused on integrated pest management of the diamondback moth from Purdue University in May 1994.

He has 43 years of wide-ranging experience in agriculture as the Hawai‘i Department of Agriculture Plant Industry Division administrator, entomologist, educator, manager and consultant. Dr. McHugh has taught at Leeward Community College and the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa’s College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources. He has also worked at DuPont Pioneer, Hana Hou Seed Harvest, LLC, Sumida Farm Inc. and Crop Care Hawaii LLC.


Dr. McHugh has been active in the Hawai‘i Farm Bureau Federation since 1975 and served as the Chair of the Environmental Stewardship Committee. He also served as a board member of the O‘ahu Resource Conservation and Development Council, as well as director and board member of the West O‘ahu Soil Conservation District. In addition, he served three terms as a member of the State’s Advisory Committee on Pesticides.

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