He was a pioneer in the development of drip irrigation, at first as a dealer of T-Systems, promoting and selling T-Tape drip tape in Ukraine, Russia and neighboring countries.

“I taught growers how to use SSDI to be successful,” Gogolev said. “Irrigation with T-Tape changed the infrastructure of the region; T-Tape became a standard for quality.”

“Andrii’s fast-growing business in the distribution of T-Tape in Ukraine, Russia and Commonwealth of Independent States countries allowed T-Systems and today’s Rivulis Irrigation to become leaders in the drip irrigation market in these territories,” said Kelbert Fabien, general manager of Europe, the Middle East and Africa, chez Rivulis Irrigation.

In 2011, Terra Ltd. merged with the biggest Turkish producer of specialty fertilizers, Doctor Tarsa, which is part of the SQM Group (global producer of specialty fertilizers based in Chile). The new company, Terratarsa Ukraine, is the biggest national distributor of specialty fertilizers, and it continues to play an important role as the irrigation agent for Rivulis Irrigation.

“Andrii is an amazing and vibrant force in irrigation in the Ukraine, extending to Uzbekistan, Russia, Bulgaria and other countries,” said Charles Burt, PhD, PE, CAIS, CID, chairman of the Irrigation Training and Research Center in San Luis Obispo.

Gogolev’s heavy involvement in the commercial side of irrigation is not to be outshined by his obvious passion for the proper development of water user associations and for the legal framework and policies that guide water development and operation on a state and national level.

He is also heavily involved in various working groups that provide input and guidance for the present process of government reform.

“Andrii has an excellent business acumen, he’s able to catch new opportunities in a complex environment, while leveraging the support for key stakeholders and partners,” Fabien said.

“What particularly impresses me is his strong sense of ethics and the desire to change the system for the good of all, even at the expense of his personal gain,” Burt said.

Gogolev said he was surprised by the award but looks forward to the affect it will have on the future promotions of his new technologies in agriculture.

His advice to up-and-comers in the industry is very simple: “Love your job, your clients and your country, be honest with yourself and don’t be afraid to share your knowledge with growers.”

National Water & Energy Conservation Award

Texas Alliance for Water Conservation

Established in 1982, this award honors a company, organization or other group entity that has made significant achievements in the conservation of water and energy due to irrigation procedures, practices, equipment, methods and techniques.

The Texas Alliance for Water Conservation began in 2005 after a grant from the Texas Water Development Board was passed.

The project uses on-farm demonstrations of cropping and livestock systems to compare the production practices, technologies and systems that can maintain individual farm profitability while improving water use efficiency.

“I believe the TAWC has been one of the best projects to be put together in many years,” said Glenn Shur, president of the TAWC Producer Board. “[The project] has helped us recognize trends of water use, effects of drought, and changes in cropping patterns not only from a market’s price function, but from water use and efficiency.”

TAWC Communications Director Samantha Borgstedt raves about the obvious effort and passion when it comes to conserving land and water that she has noticed through her association with the project.

Through the use of soil moisture monitoring equipment, producers in the project can see exactly when the soil moisture profile has been filled on their fields and are able to turn off their irrigation to save water and money.

All production-related decisions are made by the more than 20 producers involved in the project. As part of the TAWC, these area producers partner with researchers, data collection technologies and collaborating partners that include industries, universities and government agencies in an effort to determine the best practices for managing their water.

“I believe the key to TAWC’s success is its close relation to its producers. All production decisions are made by the farmer, making the project more credible to other producers,” Borgstedt said.

Producers within the TAWC have played an important role as conservation leaders and models that other area producers are following. 37

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