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2018 AAAS Charles Valentine Riley Memorial Lecture: Dr. Alison Van Eenennaam

1200 New York Ave, N.W., Washington, DC

In 2008, the Charles Valentine Riley Memorial Foundation (RMF) made a gift to AAAS to endow a Charles Valentine Riley Memorial Lecture at AAAS in honor of Professor Riley's legacy as a "whole picture" person with a vision for enhancing agriculture through scientific knowledge.

Working in collaboration with the RMF and the World Food Prize Foundation (WFPF) — an organization whose fundamental goal is to support efforts toward an adequate supply and availability of nutritious food for the burgeoning world population in the 21st century —the AAAS Riley Lecture is an important opportunity to explore the environmental and societal challenges facing our planet through the lens of agricultural innovation and its applications in a global context.


The Lecture is sponsored by the Charles Valentine Riley Memorial Foundation; the U. S. Department of Agriculture's Agricultural Research Service, Economic Research Service, Forest Service, National Institute of Food and Agriculture; and Mars Incorporated.

2018 Lecture Information:

Does Agriculture have a Parallel Science Problem?

Featuring Dr. Alison Van Eenennaam, Cooperative Extension Specialist in the field of Animal Genomics and Biotechnology, University of California, Davis.

Immediately following the lecture, Dr. Van Eenennaam will join a panel discussion with noted leaders from the international research community, agribusiness, and other stakeholders including Dr. Jay Akridge, Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs and Diversity at Purdue University, and Dr. Rattan Lal, Distinguished University Professor of Soil Science and Director of the Carbon Management and Sequestration Center at The Ohio State University. The discussion will be led by Lowell W. Randel, President of The Randel Group, LLC.

Read about the lecture in Science magazine, “Agricultural advances draw opposition that blunts innovation.”

Additional panelists will be added as they are confirmed.

Lecture Details:
June 5, 2018 at 4:00 pm, AAAS Auditorium, 1200 New York Avenue, NW, Washington, DC

Speaker Bios:

Dr. Alison Van Eenennaam is a Cooperative Extension Specialist in the field of Animal Genomics and Biotechnology in the Department of Animal Science at University of California, Davis. Her publicly-funded research and outreach program focuses on the use of animal genomics and biotechnology in livestock production systems. Her current research projects include the development of genomic approaches to select for cattle that are less susceptible to disease and the development of genome editing approaches for livestock. She serves as the USDA NRSP-8 Cattle Genome Coordinator, and is a member of the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering and Medicine Study Committee for “Science Breakthroughs 2030: A Strategy for Food and Agricultural Research”. She has given over 525 invited presentations to audiences globally, and uses a variety of media to inform general public audiences about science and technology. She frequently provides a credentialed voice on controversial scientific topics and has appeared on national media including The Dr Oz Show, NPR, Science Friday, and the Intelligence Squared debate series. Recently she appeared in the IFT-funded documentary Food Evolution. A passionate advocate of science, Dr. Van Eenennaam was the recipient of the 2014 Council for Agricultural Science and Technology (CAST) Borlaug Communication Award, and in 2017 was elected as a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).

Dr. Jay Akridge currently is provost and executive vice president for academic affairs and diversity, with a faculty appointment as professor of agricultural economics, at Purdue University. He previously served for more than 9 years as Interim Dean/Glenn W. Sample Dean of Agriculture where he had administrative responsibility for the academic, research, extension, and international programs of the College. Before moving into administration, Dr. Akridge was the James and Lois Ackerman Professor of Agricultural Economics and served as director of the Center for Food and Agricultural Business. He has held leadership roles with the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association and he continues as a member of the Farm Foundation Round Table, on the Board of Directors of AgriNovus Indiana, a public-private partnership focused on developing the agricultural bioscience sector in Indiana, and on the Board of Directors of Agriculture Future of America, a premier leadership development organization for post-secondary students interested in agriculture.

Dr. Rattan Lal is a Distinguished University Professor of Soil Science and Director of the Carbon Management and Sequestration Center, The Ohio State University, and an Adjunct Professor of University of Iceland. He received B.S. from Punjab Agricultural University, Ludhiana; M.S. from Indian Agricultural Research Institute, New Delhi and Ph.D. from the Ohio State University. He served as Sr. Research Fellow with the University of Sydney, Australia (1968-69), Soil Physicist at IITA, Ibadan, Nigeria (1970-87), and Professor of Soil Science at OSU (1987-to date). He has authored/co-authored 868 refereed journal articles and 506 book chapters, has written 20 and edited/co-edited 69 books. He is included in the Thomson Reuters list of the World’s Most Influential Scientific Minds (2014, 2015), and among the most cited scientists (2014, 2015, 2016 and 2017). He received the Honoris Causa degree from five universities in Europe and Asia, and is fellow of the five professional societies. Dr. Lal mentored 110 graduate students and 169 visiting scholars from around the world. He was President of the World Association of Soil and Water Conservation (1987-1990), International Soil and Tillage Research Organization (1988-1991), Soil Science Society of America (2006-2008) and is the current President of the International Union of Soil Sciences (2017-2018).

Mr. Lowell W. Randel currently serves as President of The Randel Group, LLC, a government relations firm in the Washington, DC area and represents multiple clients in the agricultural research community.  He also sits on the Board of the Riley Memorial Foundation.  He has over 20 years of public and private sector experience working on food and agriculture policy issues in Washington, DC.  Prior to founding The Randel Group, LLC, Lowell served as the Deputy Assistant Secretary for Congressional Relations at the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and served as Director of Legislative and Intergovernmental Affairs for the Research, Education and Economics Mission Area at USDA.  He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Agricultural Economics and a Master’s Degree in Agricultural Development, both from Texas A&M University.  He also received a Juris Doctorate from George Mason University.

For more information, please contact Anne Moraske Here or 202-326-6759.


Event Contact

Anne Moraske

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