Posts Tagged: August 2016
Recently I had the opportunity to meet with President Napolitano to review accomplishments and goals for ANR. Following a very upbeat and encouraging conversation, the president requested that ANR's leadership complete a more detailed five-year strategic plan. The draft is due at the end of October, with the final document due in December.
While this is a timely and useful exercise for the division, it comes with a very challenging timeline. The 2025 Strategic Vision will guide our work, and where strategic plans already exist within the statewide programs, strategic initiatives, Research and Extension Centers, budget plans, etc., we will draw from these plans.
Because of the timeline, it is not possible to conduct the extensive input and feedback processes that were used in creating the 2025 Strategic Vision. However, strategic plans, by nature, are dynamic documents. The intent is to position ANR to achieve the goals laid out in the 2025 Strategic Vision and address strengths, weaknesses and gaps in attaining those goals. The draft that is shared with the president will undergo a vetting process with ANR advisory groups and committees.
The primary planning group will be the Senior Leadership Team. However, other individuals have been invited to participate so that both programs and administrative units are well-represented.
We'll share the final document with you when we've delivered it to the president's office. If you have comments or suggestions for this process, please submit them to me using this link http://ucanr.edu/5yearplancomments.
Following a search process for the Youth, Families and Communities (YFC) director position, ANR has decided not to fill the position at present.
“This decision did not come easily because we were successful in attracting a number of outstanding candidates, each of whom would bring different experiences and perspectives to the position,” said AVP Wendy Powers in announcing the decision.
Given the current search for a Vice Provost of Statewide Programs and Strategic Initiatives, with whom the YFC Director would work closely, coupled with the need to recruit for a new Vice Provost for Cooperative Extension (following Chris Greer's decision to leave the post), and the strategic planning process that ANR has just begun, ANR leaders decided to take time to re-assess the needs of the YFC programs.
“Before moving forward, we want to be sure we are allocating resources such that programs can be best positioned to meet future needs,” said Powers. “We do want to thank the search committee for their efforts in identifying strong candidates and for taking the time to see the process through.”
For the time being, Shannon Horrillo, associate director of 4-H program and policy, and Katie Panerella, associate director of nutrition, family and consumer sciences program and policy, will continue to share the YFC director duties, as they have for the last year.
“They have done a great job leading the programs and there is no reason at this time for that to change,” said Powers./span>
“After much deliberation, I have decided to step down as UC ANR vice provost of Cooperative Extension to return to the field,” said Greer, who was UC Cooperative Extension director for Colusa, Sutter, Yuba and Glenn counties prior to assuming his current position. “I will be transitioning to the role of area integrated pest management Cooperative Extension advisor, with responsibilities in San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara and Ventura, effective Jan. 1, 2017.”
Greer said that he will work closely with Associate Vice President Wendy Powers and the Academic Human Resources unit to recruit and appoint the next vice provost of Cooperative Extension, which oversees all county-based academic programs statewide.
“The recruitment will open soon, and we need your help in identifying and encouraging outstanding candidates to apply for the position,” he said. “We hope to have an overlap between myself and the new vice provost of Cooperative Extension to facilitate a smooth transition.”
“I will continue to perform the critical functions of the position during the transition to the new vice provost of Cooperative Extension. Recruitment and hiring of new academics are priorities for UC ANR, and these processes will continue in our effort to rebuild the academic footprint. I will also continue to serve on the UC ANR Peer Review Committee for the next two years to ensure continuity and integrity of the academic merit and promotion process.
“UC ANR is heading in an exciting direction under the leadership of Vice President Glenda Humiston, Associate Vice President Wendy Powers and Associate Vice President Tu Tran. I look forward to continuing to work with them and all of you during the transition and the coming years in my new role. I have enjoyed serving as the first UC ANR vice provost of Cooperative Extension over the past two years and thank you all for your support and your continued contributions to UC ANR.”
Greer, who joined ANR in 2002, has also served as UCCE area rice advisor in Colusa, Glenn, Yolo, Sutter, Yuba, Sacramento and Placer counties.
Khaled Bali became a UCCE irrigation water management specialist on July 18.
Since joining UC ANR in 1992 as an irrigation and water management advisor in Imperial County, Bali has also served in leadership positions. From 2009 until accepting the UCCE specialist position, he was the UCCE director in Imperial County. In 2012-2013 and 2014-2015, he served as interim director of the UC Desert Research and Extension Center in Holtville.
His research and extension projects encompass irrigation, drainage, water management, water quality, soil salinity, waste management, reuse of wastewater for irrigation and nonpoint-source pollution control practices. Bali, who has been an active participant in the UC-Mexico Initiative, continues to collaborate with researchers from the Universidad Autónoma de Baja California on irrigation projects.
Bali earned his Ph.D. in soil physics and M.S. in irrigation and drainage from UC Davis and B.S. in soil and irrigation from the University of Jordan. He was a Fulbright Scholar at the University of Jordan (2006-2007), where he conducted research on wastewater reuse for irrigation and constructed wetlands to treat wastewater.
Bali is based at the Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension Center in Parlier and can be reached at (559) 646-6541 and email@example.com.
Alireza Pourreza joined UCCE on June 30 as an area agricultural application engineering advisor.
Prior to joining UCCE, Pourreza was a postdoctoral research associate at University of Florida, where he conducted research in detection of citrus black spot disease using spectrometry and aerial image analysis. While at Florida, he developed an autonomous sensing system using a field robot.
From 2011 to 2014, he was also a graduate assistant at the University of Florida, conducting research and lecturing. His doctoral dissertation focused on interdisciplinary research in citrus diseases detection. Pourreza developed two real-time, vision-based sensors for detecting citrus huanglongbing disease for laboratory and field experiments. On Dec. 23, 2015, he published a patent, “Method for Huanglongbing (HLB) Detection” (WO 2015/193885, 2015), for the polarized imaging technique that he developed. From 2004 to 2011, Pourreza, who is fluent in Farsi, was a technical expert and project manager for BinaPardaz Shargh Company in Mashhad, Iran.
Pourreza completed a Ph.D. and an M.S. in agricultural and biological engineering at the University of Florida. He earned an M.S. in mechanics of agricultural machinery and a B.S. in farm machinery engineering from Ferdowsi University, Mashhad, Iran.
Pourreza is based at Kearney Agricultural Research and Extension Center and can be reached at (559) 646-6577 and firstname.lastname@example.org.
Suzanna Martinez, who joined ANR in 2014 as an analyst for the Nutrition Policy Institute, became an assistant researcher on June 1. She recently co-authored UC's Student Food Access and Security Study with UC Santa Barbara sustainability coordinator Katie Maynard and NPI director Lorrene Ritchie.
Prior to joining ANR, Martinez, who is fluent in Spanish, completed her second postdoctoral fellowship at UC San Francisco, where she studied determinants of obesity among Latino children, including sleep and nutrition. From 2009 to 2012, she was a postdoctoral fellow at UC San Diego in the Department of Pediatrics, studying cardiovascular health in Chileans.
Martinez earned her B.S. in biochemistry and cell biology from UC San Diego, M.S. in nutrition education from Columbia University and Ph.D. in public health from the Joint Doctoral Program at UC San Diego and San Diego State University.
Based at UCOP, Martinez can be reached at (510) 587-6264, email@example.com and on Twitter @drSusieMartinez.
Burton joins Contracts and Grants
Suzanne Burton began working in ANR's Office of Contracts and Grants on Aug. 1 as a senior analyst. She will work with UCCE county offices and statewide programs, reviewing proposals for submission, reviewing and drafting award documents and writing subawards.
Over the past 15 years, Burton has worked at the UC Davis School of Veterinary Medicine assisting principal investigators in preparing their proposals as well as at the Office of Research's Sponsored Programs Office as a contracts and grants and research administration analyst.
Burton is located in the ANR building in Davis and can be reached at (530) 750-1386 and firstname.lastname@example.org.
Nine UCCE specialists and advisors are participating in the $3.7 million grant for “Management of Brown Marmorated Stink Bug in U.S. Specialty Crops,” submitted by North Carolina State University, Raleigh. The stink bug project is a multi-state project to develop management tools and strategies using biological control.
“This is a very common invasive insect in Sacramento and other urban areas but has not widely infested agricultural areas,” said Larry Godfrey, UC Cooperative Extension specialist in the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology. “Based on what the insect has done in the mid-Atlantic states in the East, everyone expects it to invade crop areas. The grant is not crop specific, other than specialty crops, which is about all of the crops we grow in California--except (primarily) rice, corn and cotton. We will be studying how this pest adapts to California conditions and crops. And also studies will be done on the fit of biological control for managing this pest. Clearly some of our major crops such as grapes, almonds and other nut crops, tomatoes, cool-season vegetables, stone fruits, etc. will be subjects of research.”
Other UC scientists working on the brown marmorated stink bug project with Godfrey are Frank Zalom, UCCE specialist and professor in the UC Davis Department of Entomology and Nematology, UCCE specialists Kent Daane in the UC Berkeley Department of Environmental Science, Policy and Management, and Mark Hoddle in the UC Riverside Department of Entomology; UCCE advisors Monica Cooper in Napa County and Chuck Ingels in Sacramento County; and area integrated pest management advisors Emily Symmes in Butte County, Shimat Joseph in Monterey County and Jhalendra Rijal in Stanislaus County.
One study will identify plants currently available in the marketplace that attract pollinators and the pollinators which visit them. Another study will document the actual risk to pollinators from current and alternative ornamental horticulture production practices. Extension efforts include developing recommendations for growers and landscape professionals for effective pest management while protecting pollinators and crafting guidelines for pollinator education displays at garden centers and public gardens.
For more information about the 19 grants funded, visit USDA's National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) Specialty Crop Research Initiative website.