As a land grant university, a central facet of Purdue University’s mission is Purdue Extension, which supports agriculture and research throughout the state as well as internationally. As senior associate dean of the College of Agriculture and director of Purdue Extension, Jason Henderson leads this effort. Henderson drives initiatives that connect Purdue faculty and resources with Hoosiers, which helps bolster the state economy and ensures the expertise of Purdue’s faculty has far-reaching and concrete applications.
Before coming to Purdue, Henderson served as vice president and Omaha Branch executive at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City where he became a specialist on rural, agricultural economies in the Midwest. Today, Henderson is a leading expert and is routinely interviewed by national news outlets. Henderson’s research focuses on the rebound of the rural economy after the latest recession, the role of entrepreneurs in that recovery, and, more recently, the potential of electronic commerce to transform rural agricultural and industrial communities. Henderson calls broadband the “electricity of the 21st century,” adding that without it communities will be left behind economically and technologically. Henderson has testified several times before congressional committees on issues of agriculture and technological access.