CFAES Monthly : February 2015

  1. Saif is first woman, first Ohio State scientist to win Wolf Prize in Agriculture

    CFAES scientist Linda Saif (pictured, right) has been awarded the 2015 Wolf Prize in Agriculture for her work on viral diseases of critical importance to farm animals, food safety and human health.

    A Distinguished University professor in the Food Animal Health Research ProgramSaif is the first Ohio State scientist and the first woman to receive the recognition, which the Wolf Foundation of Israel has given since 1978. The award will be presented at a ceremony to be held at the Knesset, Israel’s parliament, on May 31 in Jerusalem.

    In addition to agriculture, the Wolf Prize is given for achievement in the fields of chemistry, mathematics, medicine, physics and the arts. Past recipients include Stephen Hawking and Peter Higgs.

    “Dr. Linda Saif’s work exemplifies our college’s commitment to conducting meaningful research that benefits agriculture as well as human health and well-being,” said Bruce McPheron, vice president for agricultural administration and dean of CFAES. “This prestigious award is a testament to the world-class research we do at Ohio State.”


  2. Feb. 20: Come to the open house at CFAES’s new Library and Student Success Center

    You’re invited to an open house at CFAES’s new Library and Student Success Center. It’s this Friday, Feb. 20, from 3-5 p.m., in 100 Agricultural Adminstration Building, 2120 Fyffe Road, in Columbus. Come check out the dynamic new spaces for study and learn about the services being offered there.

    RSVP to

    For more information, call 614-247-6335 or email

  3. CFAES launches new Impact Stories website

    Last month, CFAES launched a new site that focuses on impact stories from our college. You’re encouraged to view and reference the site, which is here.

    As we enter the critical advocacy and budget period for OARDC and OSU Extension, this is a resource that we hope will be widely shared through social networks, websites and other outlets. Throughout the year, you’ll see this resource continue to be populated and will also include stories about our students and graduates.

    Over the next several months, a significant focus of our teams will be on stories associated with water quality, food security, Ohio State ATI and preparing young Ohioans for success (4-H). Additionally, our teams will highlight our students and their tremendous success in the classroom and beyond. As always, if you have story ideas, please feel free to share them with me at or with Suzanne Steel at—Ryan Schmiesing, CFAES Communications

  4. CFAES welcomes Bloir, Seger, Sword

    Please join us as we congratulate and welcome three new members of the CFAES team.

    Kirk Bloir, Associate State 4-H Leader 

    Kirk Bloir has been appointed Associate State 4-H Leader, State 4-H Office. He also has been appointed Assistant Professor, OSU Extension. This appointment began Feb. 1. His contact information is, 320 Nationwide and Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center, 2201 Fred Taylor Drive, Columbus, OH 43210, 614-247-8168.

    Kirk’s position will provide overall leadership for developing and implementing a comprehensive and balanced teaching and applied research agenda for 4-H Youth Program Development within the Department of Extension in CFAES. More specifically, he will be focused on the specialty area of risk management in outside-school-time youth organizations as well as the specialty area of positive youth development.

    We thank the search committee chair, Robert Horton, and his search committee for their efforts and commend the great pool of candidates who applied and interviewed for this position.

    Jamie Seger, Educational Technology Program Director, OSU Extension

    Jamie Seger has been appointed Program Director, Educational Technology, effective March 1. Her contact information is, OSU Extension, Miami County, 201 W. Main St., Troy, OH 45373, 937-440-3945.

    Jamie’s position will be responsible for leadership and will serve as the primary contact for educational technology integration for OSU Extension. She will identify and develop training programs to enhance faculty and staff knowledge; will serve as a liaison and work with CFAES and/or distance education leaders; will collaborate with the Office of Distance Education and eLearning to leverage resources and expertise for the benefit of community-based programming; and will develop and implement an overall strategic plan that includes marketing and communication strategy for the implementation of educational technology resources and integration with program development and delivery.

    Our thanks to the search committee members, chaired by Ken Martin, for their work in screening and interviewing candidates.

    Michael Sword, Superintendent of Farm Operations, OARDC

    Michael Sword has accepted the position of Superintendent of Farm Operations for Research Operations at OARDC. His appointment will start March 1.

    Mike brings extensive experience in farm operations and agricultural power and machinery design. He has a master’s degree in agricultural and biological Engineering from Penn State University and a bachelor’s degree in food, agricultural and biological engineering from Ohio State.

    Mike has worked since 2009 as a research specialist with Ohio State’s OBIC Bioproducts Innovation Center, where he provided engineering expertise to several field-based research projects. His previous experience includes employment as a design and product testing engineer at Kuhn Knight Inc., the Transportation Research Center and New Holland North America.

    A native of New London, Ohio, Mike manages a personal farm operation that includes grain, beef cattle and vegetables. His previous experience demonstrates his skills in collaboration, communication and team-building.

  5. Sullivan chosen for Fulbright biodiversity chair

    Mazeika Sullivan, associate professor and assistant director, School of Environment and Natural Resources, has been selected for a 2015-16 Fulbright U.S. Scholar grant — specifically, the Fulbright-National University Distinguished Chair in Biodiversity and Sustainable Development award.

    The award, based at the National University of Colombia, seeks to promote, communicate and exchange new academic and research developments in the fields of biodiversity and sustainability with the goal of developing research collaboration among the academic, scientific and practitioner communities from different fields of knowledge at a national and international level. Colombia has some of the world’s richest biological diversity. The National University is Colombia’s largest university.

    Sullivan studies and teaches about aquatic and riparian ecosystems, oversees SENR’s Wilma H. Schiermeier Olentangy River Wetland Research Park, and last year received Ohio State’s Alumni Award for Distinguished Teaching.

    The Fulbright Scholar Program is administered by the Council for International Exchange of Scholars, part of the Institute of International Education.

  6. ATI students lead drive for military working dogs

    In fall 2014, Leslie Pearce-Keating’s English classes at Ohio State ATI in Wooster adopted the military working dogs of Afghanistan as a special project. The drive began when student Samantha Appleman introduced Pearce-Keating and her classes to Todd Coning, a retired airman who trained military dogs for 20 years.

    After the classes skyped Coning, they decided to start a collection for the working dogs. Three huge boxes of bones, toys and treats were collected from students and faculty, along with 15 donated copies of Hannah’s Memory Box, Pearce-Keating’s memoir about her therapy dog. The Monday before autumn semester finals, six of Pearce-Keating's students met at her house to wrap gifts, make signs for the soldiers wishing them a happy holiday and help pack the items. Key students in the endeavor were Appleman, Paige McAtee, Joe Metheney, Emily Daniel and Rachel Garrison.

    Thanks to FFA, the $97 postage was paid, allowing the parcels to arrive at several  Afghanistan posts two days before Christmas. The dog handlers were thrilled by the arrival, which allowed them to choose special holiday gifts for their best friends. Since Pearce-Keating’s topic this year is the animal-human connection, she plans to continue the efforts to furnish much-needed toys and treats for the dogs that help to keep our servicemen and women safe.

  7. March 7: Join us as we congratulate our alumni

    You’re invited to CFAES’s 2015 Alumni Awards Luncheon, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Saturday, March 7, in the Ohio Union Performance Hall (first floor), 1739 North High St., in Columbus. Join your colleagues in congratulating the 14 deserving individuals listed below. Tickets are $30 for lunch and a parking voucher.

    You can register online here or through Morgan Dailey at 614-688-4659 or Seating is limited. RSVP by Feb. 20.

    Questions? Contact Pat Whittington at 614-247-6236 or

    Meritorious Service to the College

    • Glenn Himes, PhD (1964), Columbus, Ohio.
    • Dale Leppo, Tallmadge, Ohio.

    Distinguished Alumni Award

    • C. Dale Baughman, BS (1961), Brookville, Ohio.
    • Bryan Black, ASc (1980), Canal Winchester, Ohio.
    • Bob Gibbs, ASc (1974), Lakeville, Ohio.
    • Wayne Impullitti, ASc (1984), Burton, Ohio.
    • Dick Isler, BS (1969), Delaware, Ohio.
    • Rob Rettig, BS (1984), Napoleon, Ohio.
    • Kevin Wendt, BS (1990), Plain City, Ohio.

    International Alumni Award

    • Ruperto Sangalang, PhD (1982), Quezon City, Philippines.

    Young Professional Award

    • Marie Antoniewski Colmerauer, MS (2007), Columbus, Ohio.
    • Renee Geyer, ASc (2009), Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio.
    • Josh Jennings, ASc, BS (2000), Marysville, Ohio.
    • Maria Yost, BS, MS (2003, 2005), Louisville, Kentucky.
  8. ATI students win Ohio Turf Bowl Trophy

    After a four-year absence, the Ohio Turf Bowl trophy has returned to Ohio State ATI in Wooster. Scott Ingersoll and Josh Stewart, both second-year turfgrass management students, along with first-year student Marq Fairbanks, were victorious in winning the statewide academic competition for turfgrass management students who attend associate degree-awarding colleges in Ohio.

    Each year, the Ohio Turfgrass Foundation sponsors the friendly academic competition at the Ohio Turfgrass Foundation Conference and Show. This year’s conference and show took place Dec. 9-11 at the Kalahari Resort in Sandusky. Students tested their skills and knowledge in such areas as turfgrass science, soil science, plant pathology, entomology and weed science, as well as business aspects associated with the turfgrass management industry. This was the eighth year of the competition. Students from Ohio State ATI won the event in the first three years of the competition.

    In addition to the winning team of Ingersoll, Stewart and Fairbanks, Ohio State ATI’s teams included:

    • Jonathan Clymer, Matt Wagner and Kevin Rhoads.
    • Travis Russell, Nick Fortunato and Joey Taucher.
    • Zach Herink, Eric Boes, Max McLain and Robert Duling.

    Besides Ohio State ATI, the following schools in Ohio offer programs in turfgrass management and are eligible to sponsor teams for the competition:

    • Clark State Community College.
    • Cincinnati State Community College.
    • Columbus State Community College.
    • Kent State University, Stark Campus.
    • Owens State Community College.

    Learn more about Ohio State ATI’s turfgrass management program here

  9. Martin honored at APLU meeting

    CFAES’s Ken Martin, chair and associate director, Programs, OSU Extension, was one of 22 Fellows of the Food Systems Leadership Institute honored during a ceremony at the annual meeting of the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities. Martin is pictured second from the left. The Fellows were recognized for their accomplishments in completing the FSLI executive leadership development program and for contributions they have made to their individual organizations and the broader higher education and food systems. 

    The FSLI is a two-year program designed for experienced leaders in academia, government and industry. Through a dynamic curriculum that includes three executive style residential sessions, individual coaching, mentoring and personal projects, the FSLI seeks to enhance personal leadership ability, develop skills and knowledge for organizational change, and broaden perspectives on integrated food systems.—Food Systems Leadership Institute


  10. CFAES offers Drupal 7 website training

    As we continue to migrate CFAES’s web environment to a new content management system and/or migrate sites to the most current version, we are offering Drupal 7 training for faculty, staff and graduate students who have responsibilities for a current Drupal 7 site. Please share this information with those responsible for the content of websites in your unit or department. 

    Please know that if your website is not currently in Drupal 7, we are working to migrate those, in phases. When your site is to be migrated, our team will be in contact and we will schedule your training at that time.

    Drupal 7 Basic Training: Existing Websites

    Drupal 7 is the website content management system for CFAES. Our CFAES website, department websites and a variety of other college websites are now based in Drupal 7. This training is designed for content owners who currently have a Drupal 7 website and need to learn the basics of Drupal 7. This includes how to create and edit pages, news items, events, people and more. It’s a great refresher for those who have trained in the past and would like to review the system and have questions answered. Graduate students and student assistants are welcome to attend, as are new hires who will be responsible for editing content in a Drupal 7 website.

    OSU Extension Drupal 7 Training

    OSU Extension county websites are now based in the Drupal 7 system but have a structure and content types that are unique to these sites. This training is open to new Extension employees, those who will be taking over website responsibilities for their counties or those who’d like a refresher. This training will cover the basics of Drupal 7: How to create and edit pages, news items, events and people and the general guidelines for content placement. It is required that anyone who will be editing or adding to websites attend a training session before they are granted access. 

    The trainings will take place in 200 Kottman Hall, 2021 Coffey Road, in Columbus from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Training for Drupal 7 Template Sites is on the third Friday of every month, and training for OSU Extension Drupal 7 Extension County Sites is on the fourth Friday. If you are interested in attending one of the training sessions, please email Bonnie Scranton at; include the training session you would like to attend and the Drupal 7 site or sites that you will be editing after training.  

    Drupal 7 Training Sessions for Template Websites are offered on the following dates:

    • Feb. 20.
    • March 20.
    • April 17.
    • May 15.

    OSU Extension Drupal 7 Training Sessions for OSU Extension County Websites are offered on:

    • Feb. 27.
    • March 27.
    • April 24.
    • May 22.

    For more information, visit CFAES’s Drupal Training webpage.

  11. ATI, AGCO to partner for training and scholarship

    Ohio State ATI has entered into an agreement with AGCO, a global leader in the design, manufacture and distribution of agricultural equipment, to be an education provider in its AGCO Advantage training and scholarship program. The program recruits high school students and trains them as entry-level technicians with a participating AGCO dealer.

    ATI is partnering with Ohio Ag Equipment, the agricultural division of Ohio CAT. As part of the agreement, AGCO will provide specialized equipment for use and demonstration in ATI labs. Students in the AGCO Advantage program will enroll in ATI’s Power Equipment program and intern at Ohio Ag Equipment, which also will employ those students during summer and semester breaks.

  12. Rep. Gibbs named Wheat Leader of the Year

    U.S. Rep. Bob Gibbs, a member of Ohio State ATI’s first graduating class in 1974, received the 2014 Wheat Leader of the Year Award from the National Association of Wheat Growers at the annual Wheat Industry Winter Conference in Washington, D.C. The group’s president, Paul Penner, a Kansas farmer, presented the award on Jan. 28 in Rep. Gibbs’ office.

    “It is an honor to be recognized by the National Association of Wheat Growers,” Gibbs said. “As a farmer, I appreciate all the work this organization does for the agriculture community. Our nation’s farmers provide high-quality, safe and affordable food for American families, and as the Chairman of the Water Resources and Environment Subcommittee and a member of the House Agriculture Committee, I am committed to ensuring they have the resources they need.

    “I look forward to working with the Wheat Growers Association in the future and thank (them) for honoring me with this award.”


  13. Learn about commercialization and the Ohio State resources that can help you with it

    All Ohio State faculty and staff who are interested in learning about commercialization are invited to attend the ongoing Commercialization Workshop Series, which kicked off in January. The series walks participants through the commercialization process in eight workshops running through August.

    Each interactive workshop will have subject matter experts discussing the topics while referencing a technology from Ohio State that has been commercialized.

    Come learn about commercialization and what resources are available to aid faculty and staff in that process.

    Find the schedule of workshops and other details here.

  14. April 2: Pulitzer Prize winner Jared Diamond to speak on ‘The World Until Yesterday’

    Jared Diamond, author of the Pulitzer Prize-winning Guns, Germs and Steel, presents a lecture based on his new book The World Until Yesterday at 6:30 p.m. on April 2 in the Ohio Union’s Archie M. Griffin Grand Ballroom, 1739 N. High St., in Columbus. His lecture is part of the Provost’s Discovery Themes Lecturer Program. (Diamond earned the Wolf Prize in Agriculture in 2013. CFAES’s Linda Saif won the same award just this year.)

    In The World Until Yesterday, Diamond compares life in modern, industrialized societies with traditional ways of life and argues that traditional societies have much to teach us about conflict resolution, care of elders and children, risk management, multilingualism, and nutrition. The World Until Yesterday debuted in the top three of the New York Times bestseller list.

    With a unique blend of anthropology, sociology and evolutionary biology, Diamond depicts a way of life that is startlingly different from the way we live today. Focusing on how we can improve contemporary society by learning lessons from the past, Diamond’s message is both urgent and persuasive: With some thought and effort, we can have the best of both worlds.—Humanities Institute, Ohio State