Leonardo Lombardini Professor and Head, Department of Horticulture Horticulture
Portrait of Leonardo Lombardini

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Portrait of Leonardo Lombardini

UGA Athens Campus
Office: 1111A Miller Plant Sciences

Leo Lombardini received his Laurea degree (equivalent to B.S. + M.S.) in Forestry from the Università degli Studi di Firenze, Italy, in 1993. In 1995, he started his Doctoral Degree in Horticulture at Michigan State University, which he completed in 1999. From 1999 until 2002, he held a postdoctoral position at Washington State University’s Tree Fruit Research and Extension Center in Wenatchee, where he investigated the responses of the application of particle film, deficit irrigation treatments, and plant bioregulators on whole-canopy assimilation rate, light interception, water relations, and fruit quality in apple and pear trees. In June 2002, he started his appointment as Assistant Professor in the Department of Horticultural Sciences at Texas A&M University, as horticulturist/pecan physiologist. He was promoted to Associate Professor in 2008 and to Professor in 2015. In January 2014 he became affiliated with the Borlaug Institute for International Agriculture as Deputy Director of World Coffee Research. In September 2016 he became the founding Director of the Center for Coffee Research and Education at Texas A&M University, which focused on improving the quality and supply of coffee globally through research and capacity building.

Dr. Lombardini’s research emphasis has focused on plant physiology, gas exchange, and plant’s responses to environmental stress. He has authored/coauthored over 50 refereed publications, generated over $1 million in grants, and given over 100 presentations at professional and research meetings worldwide. He has taught undergraduate and graduate course in areas of plant physiology, global agricultural issues, and professional development in horticulture. He started his position as Head of the Horticulture Department at the University of Georgia on September 1, 2019.


  • 95% Administration
  • 5% Service


  • B.S. + M.S. Forestry, University of Firenze, Italy, 1993
  • Ph.D. Horticulture, Michigan State University, 1999