Members of the Society nominate worthy colleagues based on their professional achievements and meritorious service. Only 0.3 percent of the Society's active and emeritus members may be elected Fellow.
Bourland received B.S. and M.S. degrees from the University of Arkansas and a Ph.D. degree from Texas A&M University.
Bourland's program focuses on cotton breeding. He has developed several selection techniques and has released 73 cotton germplasm lines and five cotton cultivars. He conducts cotton variety trials, and assisted with the development of the COTMAP plant mapping technique and COTMAN management program.
Bourland has authored or co-authored 75 refereed publications, 23 book chapters, 201 non-refereed publications, and 97 abstracts. He received the Genetics Research Award from the National Cotton Council in 2001 and the ICAC International Cotton Researcher of the Year Award in 2010.
He has served on the CSSA Crop Registration Committee, and has been active in the Beltwide Cotton Conferences. He has directed the graduate program of 26 graduate students and served on over 50 graduate student committees.