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2019 Election ​​

Candidate for Vice President

Amy O. Chark​owskiCharkowski_Election_Headshot 2017.jpg

Professor and Department Head, Department of Bioagricultural Sciences and Pest Management, Colorado State University, Fort Collins CO


Area of Specialization: Bacterial pathogenesis, management of bacterial and viral diseases of potato

Academic Record: BS, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 1989; PhD, Cornell University, 1998

Brief Description of Professional Achievements: In 1998, I joined a USDA-ARS food safety research group and studied Salmonella adherence to plants. However, I missed plant pathology, so in 2001, I joined the University of Wisconsin as an assistant professor and the administrative director of the Wisconsin Seed Potato Certification Program. There my research group focused primarily on bacterial and viral diseases of potato and on seed potato production. Implementing research findings and developing policy in the seed potato program is necessarily multidisciplinary, so I gained considerable experience in collaborative work. While at the UW, I also contributed through extension presentations, teaching, and chairing or co-chairing multiple departmental, college, and campus committees.

In 2016, I moved to Colorado State University (CSU) as the head of a department that encompasses plant pathology, entomology, and weed science. CSU is growing rapidly and my role here is to help our department grow along with the university. For example, we are initiating a new undergraduate major, raising the profile of our graduate program, and improving our facilities. Some recent successes of our department include our students winning numerous fellowships and thesis competitions, exponential growth of our Pest Management  MS program, an increase in student, staff, and faculty diversity, and a large increase in grant dollars in our department in the past two years. I still maintain a research program and our current effort is directed to a recent blackleg outbreak in potato and to the spread of PMTV and powdery scab across the United States. I also contribute to teaching at CSU and continue to provide extension presentations.

Service to APS: The majority of my APS service is in annual meeting planning. I currently serve as director of the Annual Meeting Board (2013-present) and before that, served as the Annual Meeting Board Biology Chair (2007-2013). I have also served as an editor or associated editor for Plant Disease (2009-2012) and also was vice chair/chair of the Bacteriology Committee (2005-2007) and the Biotechnology Impact Assessment Committee (2002-2003).

Other Professional Service: Chair of the UW-Madison Cellular and Molecular Biology Graduate Program 10-Year Review Committee (2016); Co-chair of the UW-Madison Biological Sciences Division Tenure Committee (2013-2014); Co-chair of the UW-Madison Biology Major Executive Committee (2007-2009); service on multiple other UW and CSU committees. Served on multiple proposal review panels for NIH, NSF, and USDA and as an ad-hoc reviewer for multiple other granting organizations and journals. Served as a reviewer for tenure and promotion cases for faculty at Cornell, Michigan State, and several other campuses. Served on National Potato Council and other grower group committees.

Awards and Honors: American Phytopathological Society Fellow (2016); Friday Chair for Vegetable Production Research (2015); American Journal of Potato Research Paper of the Year (2014); APS Syngenta Award (2011); Wisconsin Potato and Vegetable Grower Researcher of the Year (2005); USDA, Group Award for Excellence, Student Mentoring (2000); USDA Certificate of Merit, Research Activities (2000); USDA National Needs Fellowship (1993-1996).

Statement of Vision for APS: We live in a time when the need for plant pathology expertise has never been greater. Our well-being is threatened by climate change, pollution, overuse of resources. We see that global trade has led to global plant disease epidemics that change our landscape and threaten food supplies. APS is one of the few definitive sources for plant health information and our research and expertise impacts agricultural and research policies. APS must now play an even greater role in engaging our members, partner organizations, and the public to amplify our discoveries into policies and actions that improve the sustainability of the agricultural and natural ecosystems we all depend upon.

My vision for APS is that we elevate our stature by continuing to simplify how people access plant health information through our online publications and through a greater number of videos, webinars, and podcasts for scientists, students, and policy makers. Our high quality journals, books, online resources, annual meetings, and professional development opportunities help us cultivate early career scientists and the quality of all of these must remain a priority. Past APS leadership teams insured that many APS publications became easily accessible online and developed financial models that supported this change. APS should maintain this, but we must also further extend the impact of APS publications into the realms of K-12 education and agricultural policy.

My vision is also to insure that APS meeting embraces the full breadth of our members' scientific interests, and that our meetings are equitable and accessible. It is important to me that all plant pathologists are engaged and welcomed at our meetings, regardless of their career stage, background, or specialty. Over the past several years, the APS annual meeting board tried several approaches to insure this. For example, we designed sessions for early career scientists, developed POD-talks to highlight careers of APS Fellows and connect them to early career researchers, and introduced Idea Cafes to increase interactions among researchers with common interests. APS has also explored live-streamed sessions, improved accessibility for parents, recorded and closed captioned talks, and included multiple types of meeting sessions based on different types of adult learning styles. I believe that APS should continue to use technology to make our meeting more accessible to scientists worldwide and to archive meeting content so that it can be used in education and for policy decisions.

Over the years, I have learned much about leadership from APS members and I am proud of the efforts that APS members make to support all of our colleagues through promoting high quality interdisciplinary research and through working toward equity in education and other opportunities. I value how we honor our diversity in research and background and are intentional in how we provide professional development, networking, and how we monitor for bias in APS decisions. My vision is that we will continue to build upon our predecessors work by providing additional leadership training and experiences for any interested APS member to further extend these values. I am honored to have this opportunity and, if chosen, will work toward insuring that our scientific society remains a vibrant place for developing scientists and that it provides similar opportunities for future plant pathologists. 

Candidate for Vice President

John Clark RupeRupe_Election_2019.jpg

Professor, Department of Plant Pathology. University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, AR


Area of Specialization: Soybean Diseases, soil-borne diseases, seed diseases, epidemiology, disease resistance, disease control


Academic Record: BA, Biology, Goshen College, 1973; BS, Plant Pathology, Colorado State University, 1978; MS, Plant Pathology, University of Kentucky 1981; PhD, Plant Pathology, University of Kentucky, 1984


Brief Description of Professional Achievements: I have spent my career working on soybean diseases. My doctoral work at the University of Kentucky was on seed diseases and seed quality of soybean. Joining the faculty at the University of Arkansas, I began work on sudden death syndrome (SDS) of soybean, which had recently become a major problem in the Midsouth. I determined the causal agent, identified cultivar resistance, and studied the effects of the environment and cropping practices on disease development. I have worked with charcoal rot, determining the effect of irrigation, cultivar resistance, and isolate specificity on disease development. In a multi-state project on soybean flood tolerance, we identified a cultivar with resistance to seedling disease caused by Pythium spp., determined the genetics of resistance, the impact of resistance in the field and the predominate Pythium species associated with soybean. I have worked closely with nematologists, determining the impact of soybean cyst nematode on SDS and the relationship of soil texture to damage caused by the root knot nematode. I have worked closely with plant breeders, soil and weed scientists, agronomists, plant physiologists, agricultural economists, and statisticians.


My service to APS includes various positions at both the regional and national level. I served as Senior Editor of Plant Disease and was co-editor of the 4th and 5th editions of the Compendium of Soybean Diseases. As Councilor for the Southern Division, I was part of the Ad Hoc Committee on APS Governance, chaired by Mike Boehm, which developed a plan to reorganize APS governance that was approved by the membership. These experiences at APS led to other leadership roles as president of the Southern Soybean Disease Workers, Chair of the Eastern Regional Conference on the Ecology of Root Infecting Microorganisms, chair of the USDA Soybean Germplasm Committee, and member and chair of NC-504/NCERA2108: Response to Emerging Threat: Soybean Rust. At the University of Arkansas, I have served as chair of the college's Faculty Council and as chair of the university's Faculty Senate. I was named a Fellow of APS in 2016 and received the Distinguished Service Award from the Southern Soybean Disease Workers in 2018.

Service to APS: Co-Editor, 4th and 5th Editions of the Soybean Disease Compendium (1996-1999; 2009 - 2015); Phytopathology News Advisory Board (2012 - 2015); Nominations Committee (2010 - 2014); Divisional Forum (2009-2014; ex-officio since 2011); Co-Chair, Melhus Graduate Student Symposium (2008); Ad Hoc Committee on APS Governance (2008 - 2010); Financial Advisory Committee (2007- 2010); National Soybean Rust Symposium (Technical Committee member, 2005; Co-Chair, 2006); Senior Editor of Plant Disease (2001-2006); Collections and Germplasm (1995-2010, Chair, 2000);   Plant Disease Detection (1996-2008, Chair, 1999); Southern Division Councilor (2007-2010); SDAPS President (1997 - 1998); SDAPS Program Chair and Vice President (1996-1997); SDAPS Secretary-Treasurer (1989-1992).​

Other Professional Service: Southern Soybean Disease Workers President (1995); Advisory Committee for the USDA-NIFA-AFRI project “Transgenic Approaches in Managing Sudden Death Syndrome in Soybean." (2015-2019); NC-504/NCERA208: Response to Emerging Threat: Soybean Rust, 2004-2014 (Chair, 2006); USDA Soybean Germplasm Committee (2001-2011, Chair 2004);

Soybean Breeders Workshop (Co-Chair Tuesday General Session, 2016); Eastern Regional Conference on the Ecology of Root Infecting Microorganisms (Chair 2004-2005); UA College PhD Committee (Chair 2017-present); Faculty Council (1997-2001, Chair 2004); Ad hoc Committee Updating College's Personnel Document (2003); University Faculty Senate (2002-2016, Chair 2015); University Faculty Senate Vice-President (2007-2009); University Athletics Committee (2008-2010,Chair 2010).


Awards and Honors: Distinguished Service Award, Southern Soybean Disease Workers (2018); Fellow, American Phytopathological Society (2016); John White Division of Agriculture Team Award: AR Soybean Rust Working Group (2009); Junior Distinguished Service Award for Outstanding Research Contributions in Soybean Disease Control from the Southern Soybean Disease Workers (SSDW) (1989); First place, Graduate Student Competition, Southern Soybean Disease Workers (1982).


Statement of Vision for APS: There are three focus areas that I would pursue: outreach to the public, on-line education, and facilitating translational research.  The public is increasingly concerned about the quality and safety of our food, the environmental impact and sustainability of agriculture, local and organic food production, but with a growing distrust of technology. Reaching out to the public requires both explaining our science and listening to their concerns. Some of us are already doing this. APS can reach out to groups nationally and can provide a forum for members to exchange ideas and approaches for local outreach.

 The second area is online education. Increasingly, plant pathologists are members of blended departments. This structure limits the number and breadth of plant pathology courses taught. APS could develop online courses in critical subjects for plant pathology students at these institutions. Courses could be adapted for industry and for students in other countries. A fee structure for the course would offset costs and provide a revenue source for the society. In addition, APS could develop courses and workshops for its members. We already do some of this. Subjects could be selected by polling members and getting feedback from senior editors of our journals on common mistakes in protocol or analysis made by authors.

 The third area is facilitating translational research. Plant pathology is at its best when there is a clear connection between basic and applied research. Increasingly, agencies are requiring both basic and translational approaches in grants. APS is an excellent forum for bringing basic and applied scientists together to discuss approaches to important problems.

 These ideas would promote plant pathology outside of agriculture, strengthen current members, aid in training of future plant pathologists, and increase the impact and relevancy of our science. It is an honor to be nominated as vice president of APS and to share with you my vision of moving this great organization forward. 

Candidate for Councilor-at-LargeGallup_Election_2019.jpg


Courtney A. Gallup​

Integrated Field Sciences Global Disease Management Center of Expertise Leader and Global Fungicide Biology Leader, Corteva Agriscience, Indianapolis, IN


Area of Specialization: Global fungicide field research program management in support of product development in arable and specialty crops in alignment with international agricultural practices, IPM, market needs, regulatory environments, and consumer perception.


Academic Record: BS, North Carolina State University, 2002; PhD, North Carolina State University, 2009.


Brief Description of Professional Achievements: I joined Dow AgroSciences (now Corteva Agriscience) in 2009 as a Field Scientist in a research and commercial technical support position. Since that first role, I moved through a series of roles expanding in responsibilities in program and people leadership: Field Station Scientist in New Zealand, People Leader for Midwest Field Scientists, Global Discovery Biology Program Leader, North America Biology Program Leader, Global Biology Program Leader, and now also Global People Leader for Fungicide Development. Through these roles, I conducted field research internationally on a range of crops and diseases or led research programs either directly or through my teams in the characterization of Discovery molecules, development of new product concepts, technical support for registration and commercial launch activities, and technical expertise to support the existing portfolios. Professional achievements include program advancements within the Discovery pipeline, achieving successful registrations, and supporting strong launches through accurate technical positioning and stewardship, and partnerships with University research, extension, professional societies, Resistance Action Committees, and other grower and influencer groups. Current achievements include successful global launches of Zorvec as a new mode of action to control Oomycete diseases and launches in Europe of Inatreq as a new mode of action to control Zymoseptoria tritici in wheat.


All of this work requires success in some over-arching themes: strong applied plant pathologists with a market understanding, innovative leaders, collaborative external partnerships, and attraction of top talent with a well-rounded foundation in phytopathology. In this spirit, I designed and implemented a series of courses targeting global Field Scientists who conduct applied research in plant pathology. Courses included foundations in epidemiology, trial establishment, disease diagnosis, assessment techniques, and data management. In support of building leaders, I delivered trainings in facilitative leadership and unconscious bias. As an advocate for developing and attracting the next generation of industry scientists, I contributed and number of sessions through APS or directly with university departments for professional development for careers in industry. Similarly, as Director of the APS Office of Private Sector Relations (OPSR), we established an endowment with Foundation to support Experiential Awards for recipients to visit private companies for networking and career development. We also organized Industry Tours in NC and CA for graduate students and post-docs to learn about diverse career opportunities for plant pathologists in the private sector.


Service to APS: Office of Private Sector Relations Director (2013-Aug 2019); Nominations Committee (2015-2018); Sustaining Associate (2010-2013); Industry Committee (2009-present [Vice Chair/Chair 2010-2012]); Student Committee (2004-2009 [Vice Chair/Chair 2007‐2009]).


Other Professional Service: North America Fungicide Action Committee (2015-present); Women in Agribusiness (2018-present); Women's Innovator Network (2013-present); Gamma Sigma Delta (2008-present); Various webinars and university visits for career development and serving as business scientists.  

Awards and Honors: Crop Protection R&D Progress Award for Innovation (2017); North Carolina State University Nusbaum Scholar Award (2011); Flash Point Award for Outstanding Professional Development finalist (2010).


Statement of Vision for APS: APS is a dynamic society whose influence reaches across the globe and across the scientific community. The society provides a forum for knowledge sharing and dissemination, collaboration, and professional development. Today we find ourselves in a changing landscape with consolidation of departments and multinational corporations as well as a changing demographic in which scientists' careers may be more fluid than our traditional experiences. At the same time agriculture as a whole is challenged more broadly through tightened regulatory requirements, pressures from public perception, and stricter expectations from food channels.


In this changing landscape, I see APS as standing at a crossroads. We will always continue our on-going mandates to attract and develop talent and to deliver value in conducting and communicating our science. However, we have concurrent challenges to grow the engagement and support of industry membership in the face of consolidations; to potentially re-envision how we partner with the broader agricultural community where plant pathology intersects with industry-wide challenges; and to attract and retain mid-career professionals.


Unfortunately, the agricultural industry is in a state of significant consolidations. From my perspective it will be difficult for merged companies to maintain the same level of total support as they provided as individual companies. As APS, we need to prepare for lower financial contributions from the traditional multinationals by creating value for organizations that we haven't typically targeted. For this, APS is in a unique position to be able to bring together leaders and influencers across academia, industry, government, private and public regulatory leaders, and food manufacturers and distributors. As a society we can facilitate dialog focusing on the hot topics of the day that are relevant to phytopathology and reach across groups that don't typically have an opportunity to interact directly – including food-chain residue tolerances of plant protection products and integration of biocontrol agents to limit consumer exposure, invasive species during global climate change threatening crop production, CRISPR technology to develop pest tolerance in the face of negative public perception, and more. By facilitating such dialog, we can increase our influence across the entire agricultural community and grow our membership with organizations that would we would customarily consider as non-traditional to APS.


Wrapped into all of this is the need to attract and maintain mid-career professionals. It is becoming more common for professionals to change jobs, companies, universities, etc. However – once in agriculture, always in agriculture? How do we maintain our relevance to people who more commonly change jobs? In my mind, growing our impact across not only academia and government, but also across seed production, breeding/traits, seed applied technology, agrochemical development, food production and distribution, public interface, and others will help keep members as members throughout their evolving careers.  


As liaison between the membership and Council, the Councilor-at-Large serves a unique opportunity to engage in the interests and concerns across separate but linked groups of our membership and help APS Leadership integrate their activities into one unified vision. The Councilor-at-Large also has a responsibility to communicate the Society's initiatives and direction throughout the membership so that they can create their own objectives to help achieve it. Standing at the cross-roads and deciding on a path to grow and engage our membership will require full commitment across the Society and full commitment from the Councilors-at-Large. I am humbled and motivated by this opportunity. If nominated, I look forward to learning more about our membership, learning more about our current and future initiatives, communicating the vision, and guiding our membership toward that vision.


Candidate for Councilor-at-Large


David Gent

Research Plant Pathologist, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service. Courtesy Professor, Department of Botany and Plant Pathology, Oregon State University, Corvallis


Areas of Specialization: Plant disease epidemiology, ecology, and integrated management; powdery mildew and downy mildew diseases; disease risk assessment; technology transfer and outreach to growers and other stakeholders.


Academic Record: BS, Oregon State University, 1999; MS and PhD, Colorado State University, 2002 and 2004


Brief Description of Professional Achievements: I began my career as a Research Plant Pathologist with the U.S. Department of Agriculture in 2004, directly after my graduate education at Colorado State University. I serve as courtesy Professor in the Department of Botany and Plant Pathology at Oregon State University and as Visiting Associate Professor at the University of Tasmania, Australia. I enjoy collaboration and work with scientists across the U.S. and internationally. I have chaired and served on numerous graduate student committees, mentored undergraduate and high school student interns, hosted a high school teacher for a summer fellowship, and hosted a visiting scientist from an 1890 Land-grant University.


My research and outreach efforts focus on disease epidemiology, ecology, and management. I also conduct some entomology research centered primarily on conservation biological control of two-spotted spider mite and how disease management tactics influence the stability of biological control. Most of my research is focused on disease issues of hop, with research in other pathosystems as questions and opportunities for collaboration arise. Examples of research and extension accomplishments include: description of partial ontogenic resistance to powdery mildew on hop cones and the implications for disease management; characterization of the mating system of the hop powdery mildew fungus; modeling of disease risk in high-input pyrethrum production systems; and identification of means to integrate disease management tactics without disrupting conservation biological control of spider mites. I value relationships and deeply respect the growers and other members of industries we serve. My program routinely interacts with stakeholders through regular presentations, on-farm studies, and delivery of various extension materials. I also serve in several advisory roles such as on the U.S. Hop Industry Plant Protection Committee and the tier-2 board of the National Clean Plant Network for hops.


Service to APS: Nominations Committee (2010-2017); President of APS Pacific Division (2015-2016); APS task force on journal publication strategies (2015); Epidemiology (2012-2013) and Crop Loss and Risk Assessment Committee Chairs (2008-2009); senior editor for Plant Disease (2014-2015); associate editor for Plant Disease (2011-2013); senior editor for Phytopathlogy (2009-2011); co-editor of Compendium of Hop Diseases and Pests (2009); organized various Annual Meeting special sessions and symposia (2009- present).

Other Professional Service: Acting Research Leader for 6 months in the U.S. Department of Agriculture Forage Seed and Cereal Research Unit (2015-2016); tier-2 board of the National Clean Plant Network for hops (2011-present); Senior Editor for PLoS ONE (2015 to 2018); Oregon Hop Commission Quarantine Rules Committee advisor (2013); EPPO Pest Risk Analysis Working Group (2007); city councilor for the City of Harrisburg, Oregon and board member of the Harrisburg Redevelopment Agency (2007-2008); Courtesy Professor in the Department of Botany and Plant Pathology, Oregon State University, serving on various committees for graduate studies, awards, and curriculum (2005-present).

Awards and Honors: International Order of the Hop (2017); ARS Pacific West Area Early Career Scientist (2009); APS Pacific Division Early Career Award (2008); Visiting Associate Professor (2013-present) and Honorary Faculty (2008-2013) at the University of Tasmania; Organisation for Economic and Cooperative Development Fellowship (2007); USDA Outstanding Performance Award (2005-2018).


Statement of Vision for APS: Early in graduate school I was introduced to APS and my mentors impressed on me the value of the organization to the discipline of plant pathology and to people outside of the society we ultimately serve. Nearly two decades later I have a much richer understanding and appreciation for the opportunities provided by APS for individual development and support for the science of plant pathology. APS leadership strives to serve its members both with a focus on the internal needs and interests of individual members, and externally in relation to informing policy, attracting new students to the discipline, and outreach to clientele and the public. The internal focus ensures that APS programs and services provide opportunities for every member to acquire and develop professional skills, share their work in the highest quality publications, and network so that our science is effective, credible, and impactful. The success of the external focus of APS is inseparably linked to these activities, as the external activities and initiatives support the long-term viability of the science and profession. Within these broad focus areas, the position of Councilor-at-Large exists to engage members and ensure their views and needs are understood and communicated to leadership.


Chiefly then, my vision for this position is that the communication between membership and APS leadership and staff are clear, effective, and enable all members to have a voice. Our communication strategies should be current and relevant, but also personal and intentional to foster substantive engagement by APS members. In a world where increasingly complex information is reduced to 280 characters or less, I believe there is no substitute for building personal relationships and rapport. Making time for direct conversations among APS Councilors, committee leaders, and members should be an aspirational goal of APS. We need to ensure that APS continues to add value for our members individually, with appropriate consideration to the diversity of research and extension in different sub-disciplines of plant pathology, career paths, career stages, resources, geographic locations, and accessibility of products and services. The efforts by APS to deliver live and recorded webinars is an excellent example of an area we can continue to develop and add value for members, including international members and others who might not be able to attend meetings or other events in person.


Externally, efforts to advocate for and communicate the value of plant pathology to policy makers, students making career decisions, and the public remain essential. APS programs in this area are critical and we must ensure that the messaging is salient to the audience. Policy makers, students, and the public can connect with the idea of food, hunger, and jobs, and our communications should articulate clearly that plant health is a critical aspect of food security and economic development. As APS continues to advocate and communicate, we must ensure that the messaging is articulate, reliable, and clear.


I am very grateful and humbled to be nominated for Councilor-at-Large. If elected I commit to be a servant-leader that strives to connect with people, listen, respond to needs, and help to advance all members of APS.​