Widely known for his “endless energy and enthusiasm,” John Thomas "Tommy" Walker became an Extension assistant county agent in Bamberg in 1979. From 1979 to 1981, he was an area entomologist at Edisto Research and Education Center (REC) in Blackville. For the next 30 years, he worked at the Jasper County office in a variety of capacities as the agronomic row crop agent for Jasper and Hampton counties. He also cheerfully filled in when needed in Allendale and other counties. He helped South Carolina cotton growers cope with a rapidly changing landscape of insect management.
The front seat of his truck was his office away from the office. He was one of the original Certified Crop Advisors in South Carolina, receiving his certificate in 1999. He was named a Distinguished County Agent and was a popular speaker at agricultural events across the Southeast. Over the course of his career, Walker also became one of the most respected growers in South Carolina.
“Without a doubt, Tommy Walker was the agent most respected by growers in the southern half of South Carolina,” said John Mueller, the director of Edisto REC. “In return, he treated them with respect and always gave them his full effort.”