NORMAN BORLAUG REMEMBERED:
A SPECIAL SECTION
BORLAUG, FATHER OF GREEN REVOLUTION, DIES
Iowa native Norman Borlaug died Saturday at the age of 95 of complications of cancer. The distinguished professor of international agriculture at Texas A&M University was one of five people who won the Nobel Peace Prize, Presidential Medal of Freedom and Congressional Gold Medal, all for his work in combating world hunger. In 1986 he created the World Food Prize to give recognition to the work of scientists and humanitarians who have contributed to advancing international agriculture and fighting world hunger. Today's Iowa State Daily story on Borlaug includes comments from Dean Wendy Wintersteen and Mark Honeyman, coordinator of ISU Research and Demonstration Farms. The ISU Northeast Research Farm dedicated a new facility, the Borlaug Learning Center, in honor of Dr. Borlaug on Sept. 2. A link to the Daily story: http://www.iowastatedaily.com/articles/2009/09/13/news/local_news/doc4aa.... Several others in the College contributed recollections of Borlaug and his work.
ACKER REFLECTS ON BORLAUG'S LEGACY AS EDUCATOR
David Acker, CALS associate dean for academic and global programs, remembers Dr. Borlaug: “When I worked with Dr. Borlaug on the selection committee for the World Food Prize, he exhibited a wealth of information that extended well beyond plant breeding. He understood the details of soil management, pest protection, nutrition, agricultural extension, grain processing, agricultural policy, etc. He was, by far, the most widely knowledgeable person I have ever met across the range of disciplines that impact the well-being of poor people. Dr. Borlaug is best known for his research accomplishments, but I knew him as an extraordinary teacher who had a sincere and powerful commitment to educating the next generation of scientists and development professionals. He never missed an opportunity to educate and inspire young people across the U.S. and the world. He participated fully in the World Food Prize Youth Institute every year and interacted with more than 100 young people at such events. He would often tell them that he thought the Youth Institute was far more important than the symposium he had just left involving luminaries from government, industry and research institutes around the world.”
PESEK REFLECTS ON BORLAUG AND 'THE POPULATION MONSTER'
John Pesek, Charles F. Curtiss Distinguished Professor of Agriculture and Life Sciences and emeritus professor of agronomy, shared the following thoughts upon the death of Norman Borlaug: “Dr. Borlaug did not rest on his laurels, but kept on working, mostly transferring his efforts to promoting the use of selections of improved amino acid balance corn, called Quality Protein Maize, developed by CIMMYT (International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center) in Mexico for nourishment of infants and very young children specifically in Africa, but applicable elsewhere ... All Dr. Borlaug actually claimed from the beginning, immediately after winning the Nobel Prize, was that, he had gained a generation of time for the human species to get control of 'the population monster.' Even then he recognized the problem as being uncontrolled population growth and that his technological fix was good for only 20 to 25 years, given what we knew at the time. That phrase, 'population monster,' exemplifies his understanding of his world, and is as true today as it was then.”
CALS SENIOR INTRODUCED TO AGRICULTURE BY BORLAUG
Claire Wandro of Des Moines is a senior in global resource systems and, as a high school student, was a World Food Prize intern. She said she mourns the loss of Dr. Borlaug: “I not only remember a great scientist and humanitarian, but a great teacher. Dr. Borlaug introduced me to the field of agriculture and his legacy will continue to inspire students like me who look to change and help the world through agriculture.”
HERMAN REFLECTS ON BORLAUG'S INSPIRATION TO NEXT GENERATION
Amber Herman is a 2006 CALS alum in public service and administration in agriculture with a secondary major in international agriculture. She also was a Truman Scholar in 2006 and a former World Food Prize intern. She is assistant to the director of the Center for Faith-based and Community Initiatives in the U.S. Department of Agricutlure. She remembers Borlaug this way: “Norman Borlaug was passionate about inspiring the next generation of agriculturists dedicated to addressing the challenges of global hunger. Indeed, he inspired me. The first time I volunteered with the World Food Prize, I was assigned to help Mr. Borlaug with his coat as he arrived at various events. I remember asking him for career advice. He simply responded, 'Learn another language so you can communicate with local people.' In my own research travels to Africa, I made sure to learn the indigenous language of the people. Now, I am studying Spanish. Mr. Borlaug's commitment to the World Food Prize has also helped the state of Iowa remember its roots in humanitarianism and service to those in need in our own neighborhoods and all over the world. Norman's legacy will live on in the young people that are part of the World Food Prize Youth Institute. Today, we remember and celebrate a hometown hero and reflect on how we all can work together to end global hunger.”
TREE HONORING BORLAUG FLOURISHES NEAR CURTISS HALL
A red oak north of Curtiss Hall has flourished since it was planted on July 29, 1982, in honor of Norman Borlaug. A plaque on a rock near the tree states: “Dedicated in July 1982 to Norman E. Borlaug, Agricultural Scientist and Nobel Laureate.” The tree dedication was organized by the Council for Agricultural Science and Technology (CAST) as part of its 10th anniversary observance at ISU, at which Borlaug was a guest speaker. At the CAST anniversary meeting, Borlaug's topic was the place of science in the policy-making process of agriculture. From the north entrance of Curtiss Hall, the Borlaug red oak is the second tree on the sidewalk angling northwest toward Catt Hall.
INFLUENCE OF IOWA STATE-EDUCATED AG TEACHER ON BORLAUG
This excerpt is taken from the 2006 authorized biography of Borlaug, “The Man Who Fed the World,” by Leon Hesser: “[Norman Borlaug started high school in Cresco in 1929.] At high school, Norm's classes were oriented toward agriculture. Rather than preparing young people to go to college, the courses were looked at as preparation for boys to go back and work on the farms. Even then, the vocational agriculture teacher - Harry Schroeder, a recent graduate of Iowa State College - sensed that Norman had a keen mind and had an innate curiousity about the processes of plant growth and the nature of soils. Norm says, 'Under Mr. Schroeder's direction, our crops class set up one of the first on-farm chemical fertilizer tests on hybrid corn in Howard County.' ”
BORLAUG RECALLS HUNGER IN MINNEAPOLIS AS A FRESHMAN IN '33
The following excerpt is from a transcript of an interview with Norman Borlaug that aired in August 1997 on the “Common Ground” radio program: “In 1933, when I went to Minneapolis to register to go to the university, there was a couple of weeks before classes started. So I wandered, starting walking in downtown Minneapolis. First time in a big city. And here was all of these unemployed lying on the streets asking for a nickel to buy a cup of coffee and, what do you call them? White Castle hamburgers ... I happened to wander down in North Minneapolis, down in the market section. Didn't even know where I was. Big mass of churning people. A strike. Milk and vegetable producers. I'm standing there like a little country boy in the big city and all at once there's a photographer climbed up to take a picture of this mass of churning people. And I'm standing there beside this car. And somebody grabbed him and took him and busted his camera and the first thing you know I was in the middle of a terrible riot. And I saw all of these things and coming from the country where I'd never seen hunger. So because of all of these I had a very strong social concept of what it was like in other countries.”
CALS UNDERGRADUATE ENROLLMENT AT 30-YEAR HIGH
For the first time in 30 years, undergraduate enrollment has exceeded 3,000 in the College. This fall's enrollment is 3,082, an increase of 237 students since last fall. The last time enrollment was this high in the College was 3,126 in the fall of 1980. Graduate enrollment also increased to 706 from 675 last fall semester. More: http://www.ag.iastate.edu/aginfo/news_detail.php?var1=783
TWO STUDENTS RECEIVE FULBRIGHT SCHOLARSHIPS
Two Iowa State students have been awarded Fulbright U.S. Student Scholarships for 2009-2010. Both Laura Christianson and Elise Regen are enrolled in the Graduate Program for Sustainable Agriculture. Details: http://www.ag.iastate.edu/aginfo/news_detail.php?var1=784
5K TO RAISE FUNDS FOR MPS DISORDERS
Matthew Ellinwood, animal science, leads a research group that studies a group of severe inherited childhood diseases called the MPS disorders. A group of students and staff will sponsor the Heartland Run for MPS at 10 am, Sept. 19, in Brookside Park. All funds donated and raised will go directly toward research sponsored by the National MPS Society. There will be a 5K walk or run. To register ahead of time or to support the societies efforts with a donation, visit: https://www.mpssociety.org/content/4026/Races_and_Registration/. More details can also be found at the Heartland MPS Friends Facebook page by searching Facebook for “Heartland MPS Friends.”
RASTETTER CHAIR KIMLE HONORED AT MEDALLION CEREMONY
Kevin Kimle, Bruce Rastetter Chair in Agricultural Entrepreneurship in the Department of Economics,was honored at a medallion ceremony Sept. 11 at The Knoll with President Geoffroy, Dean Wintersteen, Bruce Rastetter and invited guests. Kimle was appointed to the Rastetter Chair in July. He also serves as director of CALS' Agricultural Entrepreneurship Initiative. Kimle earned his master's degree in agricultural economics at Iowa State in 1991 and co-founded E-Markets Inc., in 1996, and in 2002 founded Decision Commodities, LLC, which provides commodity sellers and buyers innovative risk management contracts. The endowed position was made possible by a gift from Rastetter, one of Iowa's leading agricultural entrepreneurs and a pioneer in the biofuels industry. Rastetter is CEO of Hawkeye Renewables.
BEAVIS NAMED PLANT SCIENCES INSTITUTE INTERIM DIRECTOR
William Beavis, George F. Sprague Endowed Chair and professor of agronomy, will serve as interim director of the Plant Sciences Institute, effective Sept. 15. Stephen Howell has stepped down as director to become the new director of the Division of Molecular and Cellular Biosciences at the National Science Foundation. More: http://www.plantsciences.iastate.edu/inthenews/news/2009-09-10-beavis-fi...
FOUR FINALISTS NAMED IN LEOPOLD CENTER DIRECTOR SEARCH
Four finalists have been named in the search for a new director to lead the Leopold Center for Sustainable Agriculture. Each candidate will visit campus for a two-day interview process that includes a public presentation and meetings with various stakeholders. More: http://www.ag.iastate.edu/aginfo/news_detail.php?var1=785
LOIS TIFFANY MEMORIAL CELEBRATION SEPT. 19
Distinguished professor emeritus Lois Tiffany, ecology, evolution and organismal biology, died Sept. 6. She was 85. A Celebration of Life Memorial will be held Saturday, Sept. 19, at the Iowa Arboretum. Participants are asked to gather at 4 p.m. A lasagna dinner will begin at 5 p.m. (bring salad, bread or dessert to share) and a program will follow at 6:30 p.m. A botanist, Tiffany was well-known for her expertise in fungi. She joined the ISU botany department in 1950 and retired in 2002. She earned bachelor's, master's and doctorate degrees in botany in 1945, 1947 and 1950.
STUDENT ELECTED TO HOMETOWN'S SCHOOL BOARD
Last week Chet Hollingshead, junior in agricultural and life sciences education, was elected to a four-year term on the Ogden Community School District's board of directors. He is a 2007 Ogden High School graduate and operates a contract hog farm with his brothers. Hollingshead is pursuing an agriculture communications emphasis and has served as a WHO Radio farm intern and Iowa Soybean Association communications intern.
QUISENBERRY TO PRESENT AT SEPT. 28 THINK TANK
The Think Tank on Animal Agriculture Sept. 28 will hear from Sharon Quisenberry, vice president for research and economic development, who will discuss “A Transitioning Research Agenda.” It will begin at 6 p.m. with social time, dinner at 6:30 p.m. and program at 7 p.m. at The Broiler, 6008 Lincoln Way. Register your attendance by e-mailing Julie Roberts, email@example.com, on or before noon on Sept. 24. You may pre-order your meal by calling 268-6088. Menu options are presented at www.thebroiler.com.
AS ASH BORER CLAIMS TREES, RESEARCHER WORKS FOR SPECIES SURVIVAL
Mark Widrlechner, assistant professor of agronomy and horticulture, and curator at the USDA-ARS North Central Regional Plant Introduction Station, is the leader of a team that will serve as a national source for reintroducing ash trees once the devastation from the ash borer can be controlled. Details: http://www.news.iastate.edu/news/2009/sep/EAB
BEEF PRODUCTION TOPICS SCHEDULED FOR FIELD DAY
An upcoming ISU Iowa Beef Center and ISU Extension field day will help producers tackle troubles from hay waste to pink eye. The extension “Fall Field Day” at the McNay Memorial Research Farm in Lucas County will be from 5:30 to 8:30 p.m. on Sept. 23.
DEADLINES AND REMINDERS
Sept. 16: College Fall Convocation, 4:15 p.m., Curtiss Auditorium, 127 Curtiss Hall
Sept. 22: Feeding the World: Are We Making Progress seminar featuring Greg BeVier of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, noon to 1 p.m. in the Ensminger Room
Sept. 22: BioCentury Research Farm dedication, ribbon-cutting and tours of the facility, 1:30 p.m., 1327 U Ave., Boone
FUNDING INFORMATION, OPPORTUNITIES AND DEADLINE REMINDERS
Dates listed are application deadlines. Contact: Roxanne Clemens, firstname.lastname@example.org
Oct. 6: Fullbright-Hays Group Projects Abroad (GPA) Program; $90,000 per award, $2.32 million total anticipated funding. More: http://www.grants.gov/search/search.do?mode=VIEW&oppId=49263
Oct. 15: American Cancer Society Postdoctoral Fellowships (includes basic, preclinical, clinical, cancer control, psychosocial, behavioral, epidemiology, health services and health policy research); progressive stipends of $44,000, $46,000 and $48,000 per year plus $4,000 per year fellowship allowance. More: http://www.cancer.org/docroot/RES/content/RES_5_2x_Postdoctoral_Fellowsh...
Dec. 1: American Society for Nutrition, $5,000 Predoctoral Fellowships for Students in Nutrition Research. More: http://www.nutrition.org/about-asn/awards/pre-doctoral/
Dec. 7: NSF Engineering Interdisciplinary Research (IDR); $400,000 to $600,000 for up to three years, requests up to a total of $1,000,000 will be considered. More: http://www.nsf.gov/funding/pgm_summ.jsp?pims_id=503439&WT.mc_id=USNSF_25
Continuous: Army Engineer Research and Development Center, Broad Area Announcement (ERDC - BAA), Environmental Laboratory (EL) projects; including environmental risk assessment, mitigation, water quality and contaminant modeling, freshwater fisheries and macro invertebrate investigation, riparian and in-stream habitat restoration, etc. More: http://www.mvk.usace.army.mil/contract/docs/BAA.pdf
ELEMENTAL IS ESSENTIAL, ELEMENTARY IS EASY
Something that is “elemental” is an essential constituent, as in, “elemental ingredients," or a power of nature, "elemental force." Something that is “elementary” is basic, introductory or easy: "an elementary math problem." (The Chicago Manual of Style, 15th ed., 2003)
PUBLICATION SUBVENTION GRANT PROPOSALS DUE OCT. 9
The Office of the Vice President for Research and Economic Development seeks proposals under the Publication Subvention Grants Program made possible by an endowment that was formed from the proceeds of the sale of the ISU Press. The deadline for applications is Oct. 9. More: http://www.vpresearch.iastate.edu/guidelines/pub_subvention.html
EXTENSION FOOD SAFETY SITE INCLUDES HAND-WASHING TIPS
“Did you wash 'em?” is the theme of a page on the www.iowafoodsafety.org Web site devoted to the importance of hand-washing. Catherine Strohbehn, ISU Extension specialist in hotel, restaurant and institutional management, supervises the site that includes research on hand-washing habits in different part of retail food service. More: http://www.extension.iastate.edu/foodsafety/consumers/index.cfm?parent=280
CLIMATE CHANGE COULD REDUCE CORN, SOYBEAN YIELDS
A study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences suggests that climate change could result in severe shortages of two of America's most important grains - corn and soybeans. The researchers paired a panel of county-level yields for these two crops, plus cotton (a warmer-weather crop) with a new fine-scale weather dataset that incorporates the whole distribution of temperatures within each day and across all days in the growing season. They found that yields increase with temperature up to 29°C for corn, 30°C for soybean, and 32°C for cotton, but that temperatures above these thresholds are very harmful. More: http://www.pnas.org/content/early/2009/08/25/0906865106.short?rss=1 (Institute of Food Technologists newsletter, Sept. 10)
CALS VOLUNTEERS PART OF UNITED WAY DAY OF CARING
About 37 groups at Iowa State volunteered Sept. 11 for the United Way of Story County Day of Caring. Approximately 509 volunteers completed 68 projects in the community. Volunteers affiliated with CALS helped with cleaning projects at two Friendship Ark residences, spruced up landscape and other areas at the Lutheran Services in Iowa Beloit campus and did yard work at a children's center located at the Unitarian Church.
AG AND LIFE SCIENCES ONLINE
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