CFAES Connect: May 2016

  1. CFAES Welcomes New Alumni

    Congratulations and welcome to our 554 newest alumni who graduated from The Ohio State University College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences Spring Semester.

    The CFAES Alumni Society hosted graduates and their families at a luncheon hours before a commencement rehearsal.

    Prior to receiving commencement-related instructions, guests heard about the importance of staying connected to the university and the benefits of alumni status from the following speakers:

    • Dr. Pat Whittington, Assistant Dean, Student Development, CFAES
    • Dr. Linda Martin, Associate Dean & Director, Academic Programs, CFAES
    • Tigi Habtemariam, Regional Engagement Officer with the Ohio State University Alumni Association
    • Jody Poth, Director of Alumni Engagement, CFAES Office of Advancement
    • Ellen Gilliland, Board Member, CFAES Alumni Society 
    • Dr. Steven Neal, Assistant Dean, Academic Affairs, CFAES

    "We hope you come back to campus often and stay involved with your alma mater," Poth said.

    From left: Taylor Isaac, Katie Porter, Sky Dominguez, Steven Simmons, Heather Dean 

    From left: Annalies Abbott, Katelan Pryor, Alan Pryor

    Buffet luncheon
    Standing, from left: Mary Latanishen, Emma Williamson, Derek Williamson, Julie Williamson. Seated, from left: Katie Williamson, Meredith Myers, Kenzie Hannum 

    New graduates, guests and CFAES staff enjoyed the Alumni Society's senior luncheon on May 6. It included a buffet (above), speakers (below) and prizes. 

  2. Alumni Explore Waterman Dairy on Family Fun Day

    A recent family fun day drew 63 guests to the Waterman Farm and Dairy Center.

    The College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences recently partnered with Ohio State’s Alumni Association to host the event. 

    Families explored Waterman, where they met the Jersey dairy cows, observed the milking process and learned about the farm’s impact on the community. 

    They also received tours of the farm on tractors and enjoyed face-painting, corn hole and a toy cow giveaway. 

    Upcoming Ohio State alumni events can be found here

    Learn more about Waterman Dairy here.

  3. Homecoming 2016: Save The Date!

    Save the date for the 2016 Homecoming Weekend and CFAES Fallfest, September 30 through October 2! We invite you to come back to campus and celebrate your Ohio State experience. 

    Homecoming Weekend is an ideal time to connect with your alma mater and the classmates who made your time here so memorable. Visit this summer for more information, a schedule of events, and hotel rates.

    Additional information will be posted as it becomes available. To stay connected or submit changes to your personal information, please visit Ohio State’s Alumni Portal at

  4. You're Invited: Ohio State ATI Scholarship Tournament Golf Outing

    All alumni are welcome to gather for a day of golf at Hawk’s Nest Golf Course on Thursday July 21, 2016. It will be a four-person scramble format with a shotgun start at 9:30 am.

    Cost is $65 per person, which includes green fees, range balls, golf cart, continental breakfast, steak dinner and prizes. The scholarship tournament was established in 1983 with proceeds benefitting the turfgrass management program.

    For questions, contact Zane Raudenbush at 330-287-1246 or To register, complete the online form at

    O-H-I-O say the golfers

  5. A Career Rooted in Agriculture, Communication and Leadership

    As the next executive vice president of the Ohio Farm Bureau Federation, Adam Sharp recognizes the career skills he acquired at The Ohio State University College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences.

    “My experience at Ohio State definitely put me on the course into this role,” said Sharp (BS, Agricultural Communication, 1994), who takes over July 18 at the Ohio Farm Bureau, a grassroots membership organization that supports the food and farm community statewide.

    “What was really a key to being able to move into a successful career in agriculture was an undergraduate internship in Washington, D.C.,” Sharp said. A CFAES advisor had suggested the internship opportunity, which led to a temporary position and later a permanent job in Washington.

    In addition, "being part of the clubs and organizations on campus was very important,” said Sharp, who was a member of Alpha Zeta fraternity, now known as FarmHouse, among other student groups.

    Sharp also learned about different cultures through Study Abroad trips. All in all, attending Ohio State was the right decision, although there was never a question that is where he would go. His entire family graduated from there. His father and brother both played football under Woody Hayes and John Cooper, respectively. His wife, Lisa, is an Ohio State graduate.

    Read more here.

  6. Recognition program honors CFAES’s finest

    CFAES held its 63rd Annual College Recognition Banquet on April 7 in Columbus. The event recognized the outstanding accomplishments of students, student groups, faculty and supporters. The banquet was dedicated to Henry Zerby, professor of meat science and chair of the Department of Animal Sciences. Here’s the full list of the award and scholarship recipients who were announced.

    Outstanding Seniors

    • Devon Alexander, Agricultural Communication, Anna, Ohio
    • Jared Ashworth, Animal Sciences, Carlisle, Pennsylvania
    • John Bolte V, Agribusiness and Applied Economics, Dublin, Ohio
    • Jordan Bonham, Agricultural Communication, Washington Court House, Ohio
    • Amy Engelbrecht, Animal Sciences, Springfield, Ohio
    • Michael Estock, Animal Sciences, Beloit, Ohio
    • Shelby Faulkner, Agriscience Education, Urbana, Ohio
    • Rachel Fladung, Animal Sciences, Hamilton, Ohio
    • Colton Harstine, Animal Sciences, Dundee, Ohio
    • Holden Hutchinson, Animal Sciences, Saint Paris, Ohio
    • Gary Klopfenstein, Sustainable Plant Systems: Agronomy, Haviland, Ohio
    • Shyla Kreager, Animal Sciences, Newark, Ohio
    • Taylor Kruse, Animal Sciences, Wauseon, Ohio
    • Antoinette Metzler, Animal Sciences, Califon, New Jersey
    • Emily Ratliff, Agribusiness and Applied Economics, Greenfield, Ohio
    • Brooke Rieke Schanowski, Agricultural Communication, Winfield, Illinois
    • Ryan Schwyn, Agricultural Engineering, Marysville, Ohio
    • Demi Snider, Agricultural Communication, Kenton, Ohio
    • Christine Snowden, Animal Sciences, Johnstown, Ohio
    • Rachel Townsley, Food Science and Technology, Urbana, Ohio

    Newcomb Scholars Year Two

    • Cheryl Fladung, Environment, Economy, Development and Sustainability, Somerset, Ohio
    • Aislinn Latham, Animal Sciences, Thurmont, Maryland
    • Anna Schmenk, Food Science and Technology, Leipsic, Ohio
    • Daniel Sosh, Food Science and Technology, Columbus, Ohio
    • Randi Shaw, Animal Sciences, Liberty Township, Ohio

    Newcomb Scholars Year Three

    • Anneliese Abbott, Sustainable Plant Systems, Otsego, Michigan
    • Clint Gasser, Animal Sciences, Creston, Ohio
    • Annaliese Koontz, Environment, Economy, Development and Sustainability, Cincinnati, Ohio
    • Mara Momenee, Environment, Economy, Development and Sustainability, Toledo, Ohio
    • Ellen Schwieterman, Animal Sciences, Lewistown, Ohio

    Newcomb Scholars Year Four

    • Kaleb Curry, Animal Sciences, Columbus, Ohio
    • Sarah Harp, Animal Sciences, Sunbury, Ohio
    • Sammie Keitlen, Environment, Economy, Development and Sustainability, Evergreen, Colorado
    • Jordan Reding, Environmental Sciences, Chagrin Falls, Ohio
    • Gabrielle Ruble, Animal Sciences, Parkersburg, West Virginia

    Newcomb Scholars ATI

    • Marissa Engle, Agronomy, St. Marys, Ohio
    • Brianna Gwirtz, Livestock Science, Shelby, Ohio
    • Janelle Pitts, Agricultural Business, Wellington, Ohio
    • Rachel Woodruff, Greenhouse and Nursery Management, Bluffton, Ohio
    • Daniel Zellers, Horticultural Science, Hartville, Ohio

    Outstanding Service to Students

    • Gina Hnytka, Program Manager, EEDS and AEDE programs, Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Development Economics
    • Morgan Dailey, College Office of Academic Programs, Office of Prospective Students

    Meritorious Service to Students

    • David Noble, The Noble Foundation
    • Dan Wampler, Division President, Synergy Flavors

    Jill A. Pfister Outstanding First Year Students

    • Monica Pennewitt, Plant Health Management, Wilmington, Ohio
    • Hannah Meller, Animal Sciences, Wauseon, Ohio

    Ray A. Miller Council Scholarships

    • Taylor Kruse, Animal Sciences, Wauseon, Ohio
    • Miranda Miser, Agricultural Communication and Agribusiness and Applied Economics, Cumberland, Ohio

    Gamma Sigma Delta Scholarship

    • Gabrielle Ruble, Animal Sciences, Parkersburg, West Virginia

    Lee Johnston Scholarships

    • Nick Doarn, Environmental Science
    • Emma Brown, Environmental Science
    • Taylor Windatt, Natural Resource Management
    • Ella Weaver, Environmental Science

    CFAES Internship Awards

    • Gary Klopfenstein, Sustainable Plant Systems: Agronomy, Haviland, Ohio
    • Eric Hanes, Agribusiness and Applied Economics, Bloomville, Ohio
    • Brooke Rieke Schanowski, Agricultural Communication, Winfield, Illinois
    • Aaron Siebeneck, Agricultural Systems Management, Kalida, Ohio
    • Karli Lane, Animal Sciences
    • Derrick Freshcorn, Plant Pathology, Kenton, Ohio
    • Derek Rieman, Agribusiness and Applied Economics      
    • Natalie Roemer, Environmental Science

    Outstanding Student Employees

    • Amanda Folck, Turfgrass Science Student Worker, Turfgrass Science, ATI, Mechanicsburg, Ohio
    • Morgan Wirick, Student Employee, ATI Library and ATI Floral Design Laboratory, Floral Design and Marketing Technology and Livestock Science

    Outstanding Academic Mentor Award

    • James Metzger, Professor and Chair, Department of Horticulture and Crop Science

    Rodney F. Plimpton Teaching Award

    • Jiyoung Lee, Associate Professor, Department of Food Science and Technology

    New Activity Award

    • Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow, Department of Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership

    Ed Johnson Outstanding Student Organization Award

    • Agricultural Communicators of Tomorrow, Department of Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership


  7. OARDC announces award winners at annual conference

    OARDC presented the following awards during its 2016 Annual Research Conference in Wooster on April 21.

    Distinguished Senior Faculty Research Award

    Dan Herms is a professor in the Department of Entomology, based on the Wooster campus. He was recognized for his influential work in understanding the ecology and evolution of tree resistance to insects, studying the impact of invasive insects on forest ecosystems, and developing integrated programs for managing pests in ornamental landscapes and nurseries.

    Herms has been a leading researcher of the ash tree-killing emerald ash borer (EAB), studying the interactions between ash and EAB from a co-evolutionary perspective in an effort to develop resistant ash trees. Herms also created a highly accurate degree day-based phenological model for predicting the development of 54 key insect pests of trees and shrubs, available at

    Dan Herms

    Distinguished Junior Faculty Research Award

    Pierce Paul is an associate professor in the Department of Plant Pathology, based on the Wooster campus. He was recognized for his research on the epidemiology and management of diseases of wheat and corn.

    Paul’s research has significantly increased the scientific community’s understanding of Fusarium head blight (FHB), a disease that has caused billions of dollars in losses to the small grains industry. Over the last seven years, Paul has been the leader of a U.S. Department of Agriculture-funded national project to develop integrated management programs for FHB and its associated toxin, deoxynivalenol, in wheat and barley.

    Pierce Paul

    Director’s Innovator of the Year Award

    This year’s award was presented to Daral Jackwood and Linda Michel, both based on the Wooster campus. Jackwood is a professor in the Food Animal Health Research Program (FAHRP) and is the founder and CEO of LARAD Inc. Michel is a research associate in FAHRP and the project director for LARAD.

    A startup company established in 2013 in the BioHio Research Park on the Wooster campus, LARAD develops and commercializes proprietary virus-like particle technology for the creation of vaccines and diagnostic tests for infectious diseases of food-producing animals.

    Daral Jackwood and Linda Michel

    OARDC Multidisciplinary Team Research Award

    The Interdisciplinary Team of Soybean Research, or SoyRes Team, is a group of Wooster and Columbus scientists whose work tackles many of the problems facing Ohio soybean producers “from the field to the bench and back again.”

    Team members include Anne Dorrance, Feng Qu, Terry Niblack and Chris Taylor, Department of Plant Pathology; John Finer, Laura Lindsey and Leah McHale, Department of Horticulture and Crop Science; Andy Michel, Department of Entomology; and Rouf Mian, formerly with the USDA’s Agricultural Research Service and now an adjunct professor in the Department of Horticulture and Crop Science.

    SoyRes Team (from left): Feng Qu, John Finer, Chris Taylor, Anne Dorrance, Andy Michel, Leah McHale. Not pictured: Rouf Mian, Terry Niblack, Laura Lindsey.

    William E. Krauss Director’s Award for Excellence in Graduate Research

    Travis Calkins, a doctoral graduate of the Department of Entomology, was the lead author of “Pharmacological and Genetic Evidence for Gap Junctions as Potential New Insecticide Targets in the Yellow Fever Mosquito, Aedes aegypti,” which appeared in the September 2015 issue of the journal PLOS ONE. His adviser was Peter Piermarini, assistant professor in the department.

    The Krauss award honors the best published paper by an OARDC-supported Ph.D. student.

    Research Poster Competition

    Ph.D. students

    • First place: Travis Calkins, Entomology, “Pharmacological and Genetic Evidence for Gap Junctions as Potential New Insecticide Targets in the Yellow Fever Mosquito, Aedes aegypti”; Peter Piermarini, adviser.
    • Second place: Erin O’Brien, Entomology, “Can Insecticides Conserve Ash Regeneration in Forests Invaded by Emerald Ash Borer?”; Dan Herms, adviser.
    • Third place: Christopher Okonkwo, Animal Sciences, “Optimization of 2,3-Butanediol Production by Paenibacillus polymyxa DSM 365”; Thaddeus Ezeji, adviser.

    Master’s degree students

    • First place: Yang Geng, Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering, “Understanding Health and Safety Practices of Ohio Farmers with On-Farm Grain Storage Facilities”; Dee Jepsen, adviser.
    • Second place: Xuewen Jiang, Food Science and Technology, “Sustainable Methods for Microcystin Decontamination for Water and Food Applications: Cold Plasma and UV with Titanium Dioxide (TiO2)”; Jiyoung Lee, adviser.
    • Third place: Amanda Luoma, Animal Sciences, “The Effect of Synbiotic Supplementation on Immune Parameters and Salmonella Colonization in Layer Hens Pre and Post Salmonella Challenge”; Ramesh Selvaraj, adviser.

    Postdoctoral researchers

    • First place: Chia-Hua Lin, Entomology, “Effects of Exposure to Seed Treatment Insecticides on Honey Bees (Apis mellifera) Colonies During Corn Planting”; Reed Johnson, adviser.
    • Second place: Frances Sivakoff, Entomology, “Effects of Lead Contamination in Sunflowers on Pollinator Behavior”; Carol Anelli, adviser.
    • Third place: Xiang Gao, Food Animal Health Research Program, “Recognition of HBGA-Like Carbohydrates in Lettuce by Human GII.4 Norovirus”; Qiuhong Wang, adviser.

    Research assistants and associates

    • First place: Vinayak Shedekar, The Ohio State University South Centers, “A Soil Organic Matter Based Decision Tool for Managing Soil Health”; Rafiq Islam, adviser.
    • Second place: Linda Michel, Food Animal Health Research Program, “Mutations that May Be Contributing to Antigenic Drift in Very Virulent Infectious Bursal Disease Viruses”; Daral Jackwood, adviser.
    • Third place: Nicole Hoekstra, Entomology, “The Influence of Soil Nutrients and Metal Burdens on Community Composition in Urban Vacant Lots”; Mary Gardiner, adviser.

    The first-place winners in each poster competition category received $500; the second-place winners, $300; the third-place winners, $150.

    The main part of the conference featured administrators’ updates on OARDC and the college and presentations and a panel discussion on a theme of “Microbiomes and Their Role in Plant and Animal Health and Disease.”

    The full conference agenda can be seen at


  8. Ohio Farm Bureau announces new Blanchard River demo farm project

    Three farms in northwest Ohio’s Blanchard River Watershed have been selected by the Ohio Farm Bureau Federation and the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Natural Resources Conservation Service to serve as demonstration farms to showcase new and innovative conservation practices that reduce and prevent nutrient runoff.

    The farms, in Hancock and Hardin counties, are Kellogg Farms, Forest; Kurt Farm, Dunkirk; and Stateler Farm, McComb.

    These demonstration farms will serve as models to share new conservation techniques and practices with farmers, land managers, the media and the public.

    The demonstration farms are a key component of Ohio Farm Bureau’s Water Quality Action Plan, a comprehensive initiative to help farmers proactively improve and protect water quality while maintaining viable farming practices.

    The project is being supported by a number of federal, state and local partners, including Ohio State and CFAES’s outreach arm, OSU Extension.—Ohio Farm Bureau Federation press release

    Read more …


  9. Dr. Lonnie King Begins As Acting CFAES Dean

    Dr. Lonnie J. King will serve as acting vice president for Agricultural Administration and acting dean of The Ohio State University College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences.
    Dr. King currently serves as special assistant to Interim Provost Bruce A. McPheron in  The Ohio State University provost's office
    King had served seven years as dean of Ohio State's College of Veterinary Medicine. Before that, he had served ten years as dean of Michigan State University's College of Veterinary Medicine and held executive leadership positions for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. 
    Learn more here.

    Dear Colleagues,
    I write to advise you that Dr. Lonnie J. King, currently serving as special assistant to the provost, has agreed to serve as Acting Vice President for Agricultural Administration and Acting Dean of the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES). He will assume the roles presently held by Dr. Ronald L. Hendrick, who will leave Ohio State in June to become dean of the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources at Michigan State University. Subject to approval by the Board of Trustees, Dr. King's appointment is effective May 15, 2016.
    His extensive leadership experience and countless scientific contributions align well with CFAES's teaching and learning, research and innovation, and outreach and engagement missions. For example, in addition to serving as dean of Ohio State's College of Veterinary Medicine (2009-2015), he also had served as a dean at Michigan State University (1996-2006). And, he had served as director of the Center for Disease Control's (CDC) National Center for Zoonotic, Vector-Borne and Enteric Diseases and led initiatives in public health, disease prevention, policy development and research.
    Dr. King also worked in global trade agreements and has testified before the U. S. Congress on issues of emerging diseases in his role as the nation's chief veterinarian. And, among his many distinctive honors, he is an elected member of the National Academy of Medicine.
    Please join me in wishing Ron well as he returns to Michigan State to lead his alma mater's college and in thanking Lonnie for serving Ohio State in yet another pivotal leadership role.
    Bruce A. McPheron, PhD
    Interim Executive Vice President and Provost