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Alan Christopher Hayward was born in Birmingham, England. He was awarded the B.S. degree with honors and the Ph.D. degree from the University of Birmingham. After a brief period working as a process microbiologist at the Commonwealth Microbiological Research Institute in Trinidad, West Indies, he worked as a bacteriologist at the Commonwealth Mycological Institute (now the CAB International Mycological Institute) in Kew, England. He then joined the Department of Microbiology at the University of University of Queensland. In addition to his duties in the Department of Microbiology, Dr. Hayward is the program manager for the Education Program of the Cooperative Research Center for Tropical Plant Pathology at the University of Queensland.

Dr. A. C. Hayward is one of the most distinguished plant bacteriologists in the world and an international authority on bacterial wilt, one of the most important diseases of a large number of crops of great economic importance. His research at the University of Queensland in Australia, beginning in the mid-1960s and continuing to the present, has contributed greatly to our understanding of the taxonomy, genetics, and evolutionary relationships of strains of Pseudomonas solanacearum. Dr. Hayward’s research is noted for its breadth and the incorporation of modern technologies throughout his entire career. In addition, he is considered one of the top instructors in the Department of Microbiology at the University of Queensland. It is this versatility and the wide scope of his contributions that have made him one of the truly outstanding scientists in Australia and a valued member of the plant pathology community worldwide.

Dr. Hayward’s early experience in Trinidad brought him in contact with several bacteria diseases of tropical plants and, realizing the severe economic impact of these diseases, he began to concentrate his efforts on the etiology of the various causal agents. He selected Pseudomonas solanacearum because of the numerous strains that occur and the host specificity that they exhibit. At Kew, he studied the physiological characteristics of a vast array of strains and published a paper in 1964 in which he classified strains into several biotypes on a biochemical basis. That paper became a classic, because it provided a simple and yet effective way to group and identify strains. Many years later, when molecular methods became available and other systems for classification were devised in Hayward’s laboratory, the evolutionary insight of the 1964 paper became evident.

During his career, Dr. Hayward has served as associate editor of the Journal of Applied Bacteriology, Phytopathology, and Australian Plant Pathology. He served as vice-president and president of the Australian Plant Pathology Society in 1974-1976 and 1991- 1993, respectively. The numerous review papers in Annual Review of Phytopathology, Fitopatolgia, Viewpoints in Biology, and the large number of chapters in books that he has published attest to his preeminence in the field of phytobacteriology.