CFAES Monthly : May 2014

Welcome to CFAES Monthly, the newsletter for faculty and staff of Ohio State University's College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Your story submissions are welcome. Send them to

  1. CFAES website updated to reflect brand guidelines

    As you know, the university issued new brand guidelines last year, and the college has been working to adopt and implement them across our organization. While much has been done with printed materials that have been widely shared, we are now releasing the first website update. The College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES) homepage,, now reflects the new brand elements. In the coming months and throughout the rest of the calendar year, we will be implementing changes to the broader college web environment.

    We know that some site owners have specifically requested their sites to be updated to reflect the new brand guidelines. It is not necessary to submit a request for this, as we will be implementing a process that moves through all our sites, including department and program-specific sites. Additionally, the redesign of the OSU Extension web environment is moving forward and there will be specific information communicated at the appropriate times regarding this change, including a more detailed timeline and tasks/responsibilities of individual site owners.

  2. Keith Smith announces retirement from OSU Extension

    Keith L. Smith, director of Ohio State University Extension since 1992, has announced his retirement effective June 30, 2015, 2015.

    Smith, who also serves as Ohio State University's associate vice president for agricultural administration, associate dean of CFAES, and Gist Chair in Extension Education and Leadership, made the announcement April 3. OSU Extension is the college's outreach arm.

    "Keith Smith has been a tireless advocate for the university's Extension initiatives for more than two decades," said Ohio State Interim President Joseph A. Alutto. "The university and the citizens of Ohio will continue to benefit from his leadership in both program and policy development for years to come."

    Smith came to Ohio State in 1980, working in personnel development for OSU Extension, and later served as associate director of Extension. He also worked in Extension at Iowa State University and as a vocational agriculture teacher and Extension agent in Utah.

    "During his 20-plus years as director of Extension, Keith has led the organization through significant growth and continues to be a steady guide as the organization adjusts to rapid, societal changes," said CFAES Dean Bruce McPheron. "My congratulations to Keith on a career that has had great impact on the citizens of the state of Ohio and on Extension across the country."

    Read the full story ...

  3. CFAES announces hiring, extensions of leadership positions

    The college has recently announced a number of new or continued appointments. Here are the details.

    Jim Metzger, chair, Horticulture and Crop Science

    Jim Metzger has been named chair of the Department of Horticulture and Crop Science. He has a long association with the department and has been serving as interim chair since 2012. A faculty member beginning in 1994, Jim has a distinguished career in his field that includes serving as a plant physiologist for the U.S. Department of Agriculture-Agricultural Research Service Bioscience Research Lab in Fargo, North Dakota, from 1980-1994. 

    As a professor in the department, Metzger has remained active in his scholarly pursuits, even as he has assumed additional administrative responsibilities. He received CFAES's Rodney F. Plimpton Outstanding Teacher Award in 2002, recognizing his accomplishments in the classroom. In 2011, students in the Department of Horticulture and Crop Science named him an outstanding faculty member.

    Metzger has contributed significantly to his field of study through publications in leading journals, editing or writing chapters in books, and presenting at national and international conferences.

    Jeanne Osborne, assistant director, ATI

    Jeanne Osborne has been named assistant director, Academic Affairs, at Ohio State ATI, effective May 19. Osborne is a CFAES alumna with a B.S. in animal genetics/reproductive physiology and an M.S. in rumen microbiology. She has served at Ohio State in the Department of Animal Sciences, the Department of Internal Medicine, the Department of Human Nutrition, and the School of Physical Activity and Educational Services. She has direct experience in curriculum and course development and teaching as well as a background in student learning assessment and reporting. She assisted in the development of and then taught the "Animals in Society," "Animal Welfare and Behavior in Livestock Industries," and "Domestication and Selection of Dogs" courses in the Department of Animal Sciences.

    In her position at ATI, Osborne will provide leadership and supervision to the staff in academic affairs, student success services and the library. She will be responsible for student learning assessment, accreditation, student support services, and grant development and administration. Her other areas of responsibility will include policies concerning academic actions, the master schedule of classes, evaluation of transfer credit, student registration processes and commencement exercises.

    Elayne Siegfried, director, Human Resources

    On May 1, Elayne Siegfried assumed the role of director, Human Resources, for CFAES. Siegfried will lead CFAES's emerging college-wide human resources strategy that includes implementation of many recommendations from the recently completed human resources review. In this role, she will be working across the college to further develop and implement human resource strategic plans, goals and objectives as she manages all aspects of the operation, including workforce planning and recruitment, compensation, organizational effectiveness, performance management, training, and employee and labor relations.

    As a member of the college's senior leadership team, she will work with Dean McPheron's cabinet and report through Senior Associate Dean Ron Hendrick.

    Siegfried brings about 20 years of diverse administrative and human resource management experience to the position, including her most recent role as human resources manager for OARDC. She has a successful record of accomplishments, including having served as assistant safety service director for human resources and risk management for the city of Elyria and as director of human resources and purchasing for the city of Parma.

    She has a strong foundation in conflict resolution, training and organizational management that was developed in part through her service as director of volunteer legal services for Community Legal Aid Services Inc. and as a managing attorney for Western Reserve Legal Services.

    Henry Zerby, chair, Animal Sciences

    Henry Zerby, professor of meat science, has been named chair of the Department of Animal Sciences. He has been at Ohio State since 1999, when he joined the faculty of the department after receiving his Ph.D. from Colorado State University. He has built a solid reputation as a faculty member through his teaching, research and service and has had leadership roles on a variety of departmental, college and university committees.

    Zerby is an accomplished teacher and has been recognized by CFAES for his outstanding classroom teaching and support of students. At the 2014 CFAES Recognition Banquet, he received the Outstanding Academic Mentor award, and in 2004, received the Price Teaching Award. Additionally, he has received numerous awards for his leadership in support of state and national organizations.

    Administratively, Zerby has provided leadership for the college's Meat Science Laboratory. Internationally, he has presented at a variety of conferences, has provided support and expertise to collaborative projects, and has served as a resident instructor for the Human and Animal Study Abroad Program. The university has also benefited from his leadership, as he most recently served as chair of the Council on Academic Affairs.

    Interim appointments extended

    Sheryl Barringer's appointment as interim chair of the Department of Food Science and Technology has been extended while the search for a permanent chair continues. Barringer has been on the faculty of Ohio State since 1994 and has served in the departmental leadership role since 2012. 

    Jim Kinder's appointment as interim director of Ohio State ATI has been extended for an additional year as ATI continues its re-envisioning process. Kinder has held a number of administrative appointments at Ohio State since his return in 1999 and was named interim director in 2012.

  4. CFAES Urban Agricultural Adventure group goes to Cleveland

    On April 26, faculty, staff and students participated in the CFAES Urban Agricultural Adventure and Cultural Exploration and visited several urban farmers in Cleveland. Students from both the Columbus campus and Wooster's ATI campus joined together to make up 35 participants for the Saturday excursion.

    The program kicked off with a welcome by OSU Extension's Cuyahoga County office, a historical overview of the area, and the present-day demographics of the city.

    Throughout the day, the group toured a 10-plus-acre incubator farm located in Cleveland's Kinsman neighborhood, an initiative dedicated to providing fresh, reasonably priced produce to urban residents while also providing new farmers a chance to start their own business while serving the community. Two farmers shared their personal stories of learning, participation, growth and reward while involved in the effort.

    The CFAES  group next visited Rid-All, a demonstration/educational facility showcasing vermiculture, tilapia ponds featuring 1.5- to 2-pound fish, advanced composting, fresh produce, and flowers and herbs grown under hoop houses located on a site previously occupied by waste, old tires and refuse.

    The final stop of the day was at Cleveland's West Side Market, home of more than 100 ethnically diverse food vendors. As the group shopped among seafood, baked goods, dairy and cheese products, reasonably priced produce and herbs from the urban farms toured was on sale.

    The Urban Agricultural Adventure was made possible by funds from the CFAES Diversity Catalyst Team.—Pamela Thomas, Academic Programs

  5. OARDC announces award winners at annual conference

    OARDC's 2014 Annual Research Conference, held April 24 in Wooster, focused on the theme "From Biology to Business -- The Transformational Power of Big Data." The program featured speakers from CFAES, Purdue University, and Ohio State's colleges of Public Health and Arts and Sciences. It also included the presentation of the following annual awards.

    Distinguished Senior Faculty Research Award

    Sandra Velleman helps turkeys and the industry around them get stronger. A scientist in the Department of Animal Sciences, Velleman studies the genetic and cellular mechanisms governing how turkey muscles grow and develop -- key to improving the birds' growth rate, keeping them lean and raising them efficiently for food.

    Read more (w/ link to video) ...

    Distinguished Junior Faculty Research Award

    Luis Rodríguez-Saona, Department of Food Science and Technology, is a national and international expert on using infrared spectroscopy to analyze the safety and quality of foods. "His research accomplishments have produced significant improvements in rapid detection of quality traits and safety of agricultural products, as well as in disease detection," a nominator wrote.

    Read more (w/ link to video) ...

    Director's Innovator of the Year Award

    Ahmed Yousef, Department of Food Science and Technology, developed a new process to pasteurize eggs in the shell and discovered two new antimicrobial agents for fighting foodborne pathogens. The new process uses mild heat and pressurized ozone. It can eliminate Salmonella and other pathogens in egg contents and on egg surfaces.

    Read more (w/ link to video) ...

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

    Timothy J. Hackmann was honored for his paper "Quantifying the Responses of Mixed Rumen Microbes to Excess Carbohydrate," which appeared in April 2013 in the journal Applied and Environmental Microbiology, published by the American Society for Microbiology. Now an assistant professor at the University of Florida, he received his Ph.D. last year through Ohio State's Interdisciplinary Ph.D. Program in Nutrition.

    Read more ...

    Research Poster Competition

    The competition (pictured) recognized outstanding posters -- displays detailing research projects -- by OARDC-supported Ph.D. and master's degree students, postdoctoral researchers, and research assistants and associates. The winners were:

    • Cindy Barrera Martínez (first), Patrick Sherwood (second) and Neda Ahmadiani (third) in the Ph.D. student category;
    • Kayla Perry (first), Carlos Esquivel Palma (second) and Xinjie Tong (third) in the M.S. student category;
    • Victor Ujor (first), Rumana Yasmeen (second) and Shirin Mohammad Ali Monadjemi (third) in the postdoctoral researcher category; and
    • Sarah McNulty (first), Wenshuang Xie (second) and Nuris Acosta (third) in the research assistant and associate category.

    Get details here on the winners' topics, departments and advisors.

  6. ATI faculty, staff recognized for their contributions

    The following Ohio State ATI faculty and staff members were honored for their contributions last month at the annual Ohio State ATI Awards Reception:

    • Karen Wimbush, Ohio State ATI Distinguished Teaching Award.
    • Robert McMahon, Ohio State ATI Outstanding Advisor Award.
    • Casey Meek, Ohio State ATI Outstanding Staff Award.
    • Nathan Crook, Ohio State ATI Research, Creativity and Other Scholarly Activity Award.
    • Wes Greene and Thom Janini, NACTA (North American Colleges and Teachers of Agriculture) Teacher Award of Merit.

    We congratulate them on being recognized by their peers!

  7. OARDC publication wins national award

    SEEDS cover

    The 2012 SEEDS Report of Progress last month won first place in the Production/Digital Color category in a competition held during the annual conference of the Association of College and University Printers.

    Published by OARDC's SEEDS competitive grants program, the report was entered in the competition by Gary Warren of CFAES Communications, who attended the conference.

    Contributing to the project in addition to Gary (digital print) were Lauren Farr (graphic design), Kim Wintringham (editor) and Ken Chamberlain (photography), all of CFAES Communications, and Sarah Elvey and Lori Kaser (compilation and oversight), both of the OARDC Director's Office.

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