PAC discusses advancing President Drake’s priorities
The President's Advisory Commission on Agriculture and Natural Resources (PAC) met virtually on June 16 and had a lively discussion with one another and later with President Drake about how UC ANR can deliver on the president's priorities of social/environmental justice, public health and economic impacts of the pandemic, and climate change and agriculture. Discussion evolved about how UC ANR could be a convener and facilitator of needed community discussions around these important and often difficult topics. ANR could serve as a bridge-builder, bringing in multiple partners and disciplines.
Vice President Humiston provided an update on the state budget, COVID-19 operations, a new virtual tour of the research and extension centers, and the “Hub for Urban Living Design Workshop” that was held on May 18. She also discussed the new, optional, monthly PAC discussion sessions on emerging issues that began in May and commended Jim Farrar, Statewide IPM Program director, and Lynn Schmitt-McQuitty, Statewide 4-H Youth Development Program director, for their presentations at the first two sessions. Anne Megaro, government and community relations director, and PAC member Don Bransford reported on the activities of the Outreach and Advocacy and Funds Development committees. Deans Michael Lairmore, Helene Dillard and David Ackerly shared updates on key campus happenings.
Commissioners participated in breakout discussions to generate ideas about how UC ANR could make a greater impact in each of President Drake's priority topic areas. President Drake joined the meeting after lunch to hear presentations from commissioners that were informed by the breakout sessions:
- Sharon Nance, assistant state conservationist at the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service discussed social/environmental justice
- Mary-Ann Warmerdam, deputy controller, environmental policy at the State Controller's Office discussed public health and economic impacts of the pandemic
- Rodger Wasson, owner and president of Wasson & Associates, discussed climate change and agriculture