The 2011 recipient of the Potomac division of the American Phytopathological society distinguished service award received the Bachelor’s of Science degree in Plant Pathology with distinction from Colorado State University in 1981. Three years later our recipient also earned the Master’s of Science in Plant Pathology from Colorado State University. Our award recipient then moved on to Michigan State University where upon completion of studies and all requirements the doctorate in Plant Pathology was conferred. After receiving the doctorate our award recipient then spent 3 years as a post-doctoral researcher with the USDA-ARS in Raleigh NC before taking a position with Busch Agricultural Resources, Inc. (a subsidiary of Anheuser Busch) as Manager of Cereal Pathology. In 1996, much to our benefit, our award recipient was hired as an Extension/Research faculty member at the University of Maryland, College Park in a fairly unique joint appointment with the University of Delaware. Today, our award recipient serves as Professor and Extension specialist of vegetable plant pathology in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources; is stationed at the Lower Eastern Shore Research and Education facility in Salisbury, MD; and through a Memorandum of Understanding is also on contract with the University of Delaware. (It is my understanding that most years our award recipient actually gets paid one full salary, and only has to submit reports and justification for existence to two or three sets of administrators.)
Our award recipient’s work centers on sustainable and organic production systems, trying to understand the effects of various integrated agricultural practices on vegetable crop diseases and thereby develop effective management practices limiting the damaging effects of those diseases. Some ongoing projects include:
• Enhancing Induced Host Resistance to Diseases of Vegetables on Organic Farms
• Adopting New IPM Methods for Cucurbit Virus Management
• Expansion and utilization of the ipmPIPE Cucurbit Downy Mildew Forecasting System for the DelMarVa peninsula
• Managing Fusarium wilt on Watermelon: New solutions to a reemerging problem (I would subtitle this one as: How a new race of a pathogen does wonders for a plant pathology career)
Our award recipient has published dozens of peer-reviewed articles, first reports, plant health progress reports and disease management updates, and as PI or Co-PI has obtained over two million dollars in competitive grants from the USDA to supported this Extension and research program.
Our award recipient considered by peers to be a preeminent expert in vegetable plant pathology has also been an extraordinary contributor to APS and to the Potomac Division. A search of our recipient’s name in the APS Database revealed over 170 links. Most prominently, our recipient has served as the Potomac Division Secretary-Treasurer in 2004, Vice President in 2005, President in 2006 and as our last true Division Councilor from 2007 through 2009. As Potomac Division Councilor, our award recipient dedicated many long hours to working with APS Council on the new APS governance structure, communicating Potomac Division concerns to APS Council, and communicating developments at the national level of APS to the Division. Always a strong proponent of leadership development within the Division and leadership opportunities for Division members at the national level, this commitment to service continues. Through a twist of fate, or as an example of how our society does not let go of volunteers, our recipient is currently serving as our Divisional Forum representative, since our most recently elected Councilor was named to the new APS Council position as Divisional representative.
Given the outstanding history of service to APS and continued commitment and sacrifice to the Potomac Division, if you don’t already recognize her, it is an honor and pleasure to finally announce that Kate Everts has been selected as the 2011 APS Potomac Division Distinguished Service Award recipient.