Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Plant pathologists to honor Jenifer McBeath

Jenifer McBeath
Professor Jenifer McBeath of the UAF School of Natural Resources and Extension has been selected as a fellow of the American Phytopathological Society.

She will be honored in an awards presentation during the society’s annual meeting Aug. 5-9 in San Antonio, Texas. The society is an international scientific organization devoted to the study of plant diseases (phytopathology).

A note from Professor Tim Murray, the president of the society’s council, said McBeath had been selected to receive the award in recognition of her international distinction in collaboration outside the U.S. and for developing production practices for arctic conditions. “This, together with your distinguished service to the profession of plant pathology and other numerous achievements, makes you highly deserving of the fellow award,” he said.

McBeath, who was born in Chengdu, China, earned a doctorate in plant pathology from Rutgers University. She came to UAF in 1977 and has served as a professor of plant pathology and biotechnology at the school since 1980. Her research interests revolve around plant disease diagnostics and the development of environmentally benign means of plant disease control. McBeath developed a seed potato disease certification system that relies on intensive field sampling and lab tests. She worked to create alliances between Alaska and China/Taiwan markets, which led to the export of lab-tested, disease-free seed potatoes. Seed potatoes grown in Nenana will be planted in Shandong, China, this year, she said.

McBeath is a recipient of the Usibelli Distinguished Service Award and a U.S. State Department Embassy Science Fellowship.

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