The new livestock and natural resources farm advisor for University of California Cooperative Extension in Solano, Napa and Yolo counties developed an interest in extension work as a Peace Corps volunteer in Ecuador, where he worked with local farmers on livestock projects.

Morgan Doran ended his two years of service abroad in December 1995, traveling by bicycle from Ecuador to the doorstep of his family home in Sutter Creek, Calif.

His unforgettable experiences in South America - sharing scientific information with farmers aimed at helping them improve productivity and protect the environment - prompted Doran to pursue a career where he can work with California farmers to achieve the same goals.

As farm advisor in Solano, Napa and Yolo counties, Doran serves about 900 ranchers whose livestock production approaches $30 million annually. Primarily sheep and cattle are raised on the area's 565,000 acres of rangeland and irrigated pasture.

Doran joined the UC Cooperative Extension staff July 16, just weeks after completing a master's degree in international agricultural development at UC Davis. His graduate education focused on range science and ruminant nutrition and included coursework in social development, crop and livestock production, farm economics and project management. Doran's thesis project investigated the nutritional value of mulberry foliage as a protein supplement for ruminant livestock. Before joining the Peace Corps, Doran earned a bachelor's degree in business at Sonoma State University while working as assistant ranch manager at Lawson's Livestock in Dillon Beach, Calif.