Roland Schirman Memorial Travel Fund

The WSWS is pleased to announce a donation option for those interested in honoring Roland’s decades-long commitment and support of the organization. The donations will used to establish the Roland Schirman Memorial Travel Fund that will provide funds to assist a county extension agent with travel expenses to attend the WSWS annual meeting.

Dr. Roland Schirman, weed scientist and Columbia County, Washington Extension Agent was very active in WSWS and had attended every meeting of the Society in the past 60 years.  Sadly, Roland passed away on March 22, 2024, while attending the WSWS meeting in Denver.  Roland’s colleagues and friends are encouraged to recognize his contributions to the Society, the discipline of weed science and to agriculture in the Pacific Northwest by contributing to the Roland Schirman Memorial Travel Fund.


To contribute, please click the link below and click the “Add” button under the “Roland Schirman Memorial Travel Fund” today, or you can send a check made out to WSWS with a note “Roland Schirman Memorial Travel Fund” and mail to Eric Gustafson, Business Manager, WSWS, 12110 N. Pecos ST., Suite #220, Westminster, CO 80234.



Dr. Roland D. Schirman, 86, of Dayton, WA, went home to be with his Lord and Savior on Friday, March 22, 2024, after a brief but aggressive infection, while attending the Western Society of Weed Science meetings in Denver, CO.  Roland was born in Salem, OR on November 1, 1937, and was raised on a berry and dairy farm.  He received his Bachelor of Science Degree in Agriculture from Oregon State University.  Roland then attended the University of Wisconsin where he completed an M. S. in Agronomy and a Ph. D. in Agronomy with a minor in Plant Physiology.

 After graduating from the University of Wisconsin, he began his professional career in Product Development with Chevron Chemical Company located in Fresno, CA.  With Chevron he covered 11 states.  After two years, Roland accepted employment with the USDA-ARS in Pullman, WA, so he could find more time for his budding family.  While working for ARS, Roland conducted research on weed management in No-Till farming in the Palouse Region and also conducted research on the biology and control of rush skeletonweed.  Roland always had the best interest of the producers in mind when he conducted his research.

In 1979, Roland accepted a position with Washington State University in Dayton, WA, where he was Extension Agent and County Chair for Columbia County.  Roland was an excellent agronomist and weed scientist and had the deep respect of the growers in Columbia and neighboring counties in southeast Washington.  He conducted numerous herbicide trials, evaluated alternative crops, worked extensively with direct seeding and minimum or no-till, and he distributed bio-agents for the control of weeds.  He worked closely with the Columbia County Noxious Weed Board and served as their Advisor.

Roland attended every meeting of the Western Society of Weed Science in the past 60 years.  He served on numerous committees within WSWS, including Finance, Resolutions, Necrology and Nominating.  He was chair of the Physiology/Chemical section. Roland published numerous articles in the WSWS Research Progress Report and made several presentations.  Roland frequently volunteered his time to help with the registration desk at the WSWS meetings and help run the meetings.  In 2005, Roland received the WSWS Fellow Award.

Roland was a long-time member of the Washington State Weed Association and served on the Board of Directors.  In 1992, he was named “Weed Warrior of the Year”, the highest honor awarded to a member.  Roland was famous for organizing and running the annual weed identification quiz at the annual meetings.

Roland received many other awards for his contributions to agriculture.  They included two notable extension awards, the “Kenneth J. Morrison Award” from the WSU Department of Crop and Soil Sciences and the “Excellence in Extension Award” from the National Association of Wheat Growers.  He also received the “Professional Service Award” from the Washington Association of Conservation Districts.

Roland was preceded in death by his parents, Samuel and Lydia Schirman of Salem, OR, his wife, Carol, of over 48 years and his second wife, Betty, of 10 years.  He is survived by his children, Steve (Donna) Schirman of Denver, CO; Susan (Shayne) Ganz of Corning, CA; and Jane (Edward) Kover of Eagle River, AR along with grandchildren, Billy Paterson, Jack (Samantha) Kover and Ellen Kover.

Click here to view the full obituary.