CA&ES Currents Newsletter  icon newspaper

September 10, 2009

May 27, 2014 admin

Message from the Dean




A Message from Dean Neal Van Alfen: Budget and Leadership Updates

The college began in February to plan for how we should take the significant budget cuts expected this fiscal year. I appointed a faculty committee led by MRC Greenwood to recommend to me how our college should use its resources to meet our academic objectives; I specifically asked them to recommend where investments should be made and what we can stop doing. I have received this report and my office is currently developing an action plan based on this report for how we should take our assigned and expected budget cuts for this current fiscal year.

We have already received a 5.2 percent reduction ($3.33 million) on our campus-based total state general funds base budget ($63.63 million) for this year, in addition to reductions taken in the last fiscal year. We have not yet received word from the Vice President for Agriculture and Natural Resources regarding budget reductions on our Cooperative Extension state general funds base budget. We expect that the campus will also assign faculty FTE reductions to each college in addition to these operating budget reductions. The expected FTE reductions will be significant and cannot be reasonably met by an across-the-board cut.

The action plan that we release, based on the committee’s report, will be discussed by the various consultative committees of our college and through open town-hall meetings during the next few months. These comments will help form the basis for my office assigning new faculty FTE targets for each department. This report and proposed actions plan from my office will be released next week.

I want also to share with you the news that I will be recommending to the chancellor that Professor Mary Delany and Professor Jan Hopmans be appointed as programmatic associate deans in our college. Since each currently serves as a department chair, we will start the process of identifying new chairs for the Department of Animal Science and the Department of Land, Air and Water Resources. I am very pleased that both Mary and Jan will be joining my office as associate deans.

As always, I value your feedback. If you have questions or comments, please e-mail me.

Neal K. Van Alfen
College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences
[email protected]


Susan Cobey: Western Apicultural Society Award


Bee breeder-geneticist Susan Cobey, manager of the Harry H. Laidlaw Jr. Honey Bee Research Facility, has won the 2009 "Outstanding Service to Beekeeping" award from the Western Apicultural Society. Cobey received a plaque from the society's president, Eric Mussen, a Cooperative Extension specialist in the Department of Entomology, at the organization's 31st annual conference. Cobey is widely known for her honey bee expertise in instrumental insemination and stock improvement.

The Western Apricultural Society was founded in 1978 as a nonprofit, educational organization to meet the educational needs of beekeepers from western North America.

Susan Cobey
(530) 754-9390
[email protected]

Walter Leal: Entomological Society of America Fellow


Professor Walter Leal of the Department of Entomology has been named a fellow of the Entomological Society of America for his pioneering work in insect communication. The 6,000-member organization selects up to 10 members each year as fellows, recognizing outstanding contributions in research, teaching, extension, and administration. This year's group of 10 fellows will be recognized at the society's annual meeting, to be held in Indianapolis in December.

Chemical ecologist Leal and his lab have identified and synthesized complex pheromones from such insects as scarab beetles, true bugs, longhorn beetles, moths, and the navel orangeworm. They discovered the secret mode of the insect repellent DEET. Leal's pheromone work has been featured on the cover of several journals and has been showcased in the popular press, including the BBC, the "New York Times," and National Public Radio.

Walter Leal
(530) 752-7755
[email protected]

Pamela Tom: Seafood Industry Awards


Pamela Tom, director of the Seafood Network Information Center, which is part of the Sea Grant Extension Program, received a Professional Achievement Award from the Chinese Association of Food Scientists. The award recognizes members for "outstanding contributions to the field of food science and engineering, related to teaching, research, extension, administration, or leadership in the food industry."

Tom was also the recipient of the Earl P. McFee Award from the Atlantic Fisheries Technologists Conference. Her citation noted that she "epitomizes the principles of AFTC by fostering better understanding among seafood industry members, government officials, and academics concerned with human health, welfare, and fisheries."

Pamela Tom
(530) 752-3837
[email protected]

Dirk Van Vuren: American Society of Mammalogists


Dirk Van Vuren, a professor of Wildlife, Fish and Conservation Biology, has been named to a three-year appointment as an associate editor for the "Journal of Mammalogy," the premier scientific journal featuring the latest research in the study of mammals. The American Society of Mammalogists, which publishes the journal, also voted Van Vuren to a three-year appointment on the society's Board of Directors. The American Society of Mammalogists emphasizes research on all aspects of mammal ecology, evolution, and biogeography. The society also provides extensive support for student research.

Van Vuren, who joined UC Davis in 1990, conducts research on the ecology, behavior, and conservation of mammals, as well as ecological approaches for managing human-wildlife conflicts.

Dirk Van Vuren
(530) 752-4181
[email protected]


"Landscape Journal" Recognition


Two professors in the Landscape Architecture Program in the Department of Environmental Design are featured prominently in the August issue of "Landscape Journal," in a listing of the 50 most-cited articles appearing in the journal. "No Teens Allowed: The Exclusion of Adolescents from Public Spaces" by Professor Patsy Eubanks Owens was ranked 11th. "Village Homes: A Case Study in Community Design" by Professor Mark Francis was ranked 14th.

"Landscape Journal" is the most prestigious peer-reviewed academic journal in the study of landscape architecture. For more information, visit

Shannon Tanguay
Department of Environmental Design
(530) 752-1127
[email protected]

Early Childhood Lab School Accreditation

The Early Childhood Lab school at the Center for Child and Family Studies (CCFS) has been awarded accreditation by the National Association for the Education of Young Children. The Early Childhood Lab school is the weekday program for infants, toddlers, and preschoolers at CCFS, administered by the Department of Human and Community Development. The school serves as a model early childhood program and a site for research involving young children. In addition to professional staff, classes are staffed with undergraduate caregivers enrolled in a child development class called "Communication and Interaction with Young Children."

Staff at the Early Childhood Lab school worked for three years to achieve accreditation. The school joins other children's centers in the UC system in achieving this status. A very small percentage of early childhood programs around the country have successfully completed the accreditation process.

Janet Thompson
Center for Child and Family Studies
(530) 754-4000
[email protected]

Outstanding Achievement in Farm Health and Safety Award

The Western Center for Agricultural Health and Safety at UC Davis has selected Reiter Affiliated Companies, an Oxnard-based berry producer, to receive the center's 2009 Outstanding Achievement in Farm Health and Safety Recognition Award. The honor recognizes the efforts of Reiter Affiliated Companies, the largest berry producer in North America, to provide its employees with innovative safety training programs, continuing education, and health care services. Reiter is the first agricultural firm in the nation to provide private health clinics for farm workers.

Garland Reiter, CEO and president of Reiter Affiliated Companies, will accept the honor from the Western Center for Agricultural Health and Safety at their annual retreat to be held September 18, 2009, at the R.H. Phillips Winery and Vineyard. During the September retreat and ceremony, the center also will present an honorable mention award to Richard Cavaletto, director and department chair in the Agricultural Safety Institute at California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo.

This is the second year that the health and safety award is being presented. It was developed by the UC Davis center to recognize an individual, group, organization, association, or business that consistently strives to reduce agricultural workplace injuries and improve overall health on the farm.

Sandra Freeland
Western Center for Agricultural Health and Safety
(530) 752-5253
[email protected]

Media Training Workshops: 2009-2010 Schedule

University Communications has announced its media training schedule for the 2009-2010 academic year, with dates for both regular and advanced media training.

Media Training 1
This full-day interactive session is customized for UC Davis scientists, faculty, staff, and students who interact with the news media. It covers the benefits and risks of working with the news media, including strategies for accommodating the differing methods of print and broadcast journalists. Participants will learn what to do when a reporter calls, as well as their rights to obtain information from the news media before agreeing to an interview. A series of exercises will teach participants how to prepare for a successful interview and how to develop strategic media messages and talking points for public presentations.

All workshops will be held in the Allewelt Room of the Buehler Alumni and Visitors Center, unless otherwise noted. Enrollment is limited to eight participants per session. The class meets from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and costs $50, which includes materials and a catered lunch. (Please note that cancellations made less than one week in advance of the scheduled class date will still be charged the entire class fee.) Dates offered include October 8, November 12, January 14, February 11, May 13, and some summer training dates, TBA. For registration, contact Ada McAdow.

Advanced Media Training
This three-hour program is for those who have completed the primary media training workshop and are seeking more practice with media interviews and public speaking situations. Topics covered through on-camera exercises will include message development, speaking to a group, and aggressive interviews.

All workshops will be held in the UC Davis television studio at Mediaworks, unless otherwise noted. Enrollment is limited to three participants per session. The class meets from 9 a.m. to noon and costs $50. (Please note that cancellations made less than one week in advance of the scheduled class date will still be charged the entire class fee.) Dates offered include March 11 and April 15. The December 10 class is full. For registration, contact Ada McAdow.

Ada McAdow
University Communications
(530) 752-3683
[email protected]

Arboretum Events

For more information, visit the arboretum website:

  • "Simple Secrets for Great Container Gardens"
    Saturday, September 12, 10 a.m., Arboretum Terrace Garden, Davis Commons, First Street.
    Participants can learn some simple secrets for great container gardens. The tour guide will show examples of planting in multiple layers and grouping a variety of containers of different types and sizes to create depth and density.
  • "Folk Music Jam Session"
    Fridays, September 18 and October 2, noon to 1 p.m., Wyatt Deck.
    Pull out your fiddles, guitars, banjos, and other instruments for an acoustic jam session. Campus and community folk musicians play together over the lunch hour. All skill levels welcome. Listeners welcome!
  • "Australian Plants for Central Valley Gardens"
    Saturday, September 19, 10 a.m., Arboretum Terrace Garden, Davis Commons, First Street.
    Many plants from Australia make striking additions to home gardens in California.
  • "Poetry in the Garden: Scott McLean and Thomas Centolella"
    Thursday, September 24, 7 p.m., Wyatt Deck.
    Scott McLean and Thomas Centolella share their poetry. McLean is a lecturer in the comparative literature department, a published poet, and editor of "The Real Work." Centolella was recipient of the 1996 Poetry Medal from the Commonwealth Club of California, 1992 Lannan Literary Award for Poetry, and Stegner Fellowship at Stanford University.
  • "Perennial Plants for the Central Valley"
    Saturday, September 26, 10 a.m., Gazebo.
    Perk up your fall landscape with easy-care perennial plants.
  • "Planting Perennials"
    Sunday, October 4, 2 p.m., Gazebo.
    Fall is the best time to plant perennials. Learn some planting tips and techniques you can use this season.


Weed Science School 2009: September 21-23, 2009

The 2009 Weed Science School will meet on campus at the Bowley Science Teaching Center from September 21-23. The intensive course focuses on the mode and mechanism of herbicide activity in plants and the fate of herbicides in the environment. Organized by the UC Weed Research and Information Center, the school is designed for those involved in consulting, research, development, or sales of agricultural chemicals in either the private or public sector.

Registration is $600. The course fee includes handout materials, refreshments, and a daily lunch. For more information, visit and click on Weed Science School 2009.

Gale Perez
UC Weed Research and Information Center
(530) 752-1748
[email protected]


Arboretum Plant Sale: October 3, 2009

The arboretum hosts the 35th annual Plant Faire on Saturday, October 3, the first of two October plant sales. The sale will be held at the Arboretum Teaching Nursery on Garrod Drive. It is open to the public from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Members of the Friends of the UC Davis Arboretum and the Davis Botanical Society will be able to shop at a special member sale from 9 to 11 a.m. Anyone may join or renew at the door and be eligible for early admission and a 10 percent member discount. New members will also get a free plant.

New this year are four raised planters showcasing plant combinations and intriguing garden themes that gardeners can replicate in their own home landscapes. Plant Faire festivities will include live music and free children's activities.

Think green - bring a box or wagon to carry your purchases. For a map and plant list, visit

Diane Cary
UC Davis Arboretum
(530) 752-4880
[email protected]

College Celebration: October 9, 2009


Join us for the 21st annual College Celebration on Friday, October 9, 2009, in Freeborn Hall. The CA&ES event is held each year at harvest time to celebrate the accomplishments of our college and the people who make it possible. The event begins at 5:30 p.m. and will honor nine extraordinary individuals with the Award of Distinction, the highest recognition given by our college. A reception featuring California wine, beer, and hors d'oeuvres will follow the awards ceremony. The evening culminates with a farmers market where attendees dismantle the "welcome display" and take home a bag packed full of fresh California produce and grains.

Tickets are $15 and can be purchased online or at the door. For more information, visit

Carrie Cloud
Dean's Office
(530) 752-2120
[email protected]

"Warren's Favorite" Arboretum Plant Sale: October 17, 2009

This fall, the arboretum hosts two plant sales to accommodate the high level of community interest. On Saturday, October 17, the plant sale will feature a group of "Warren's Favorites," great plants for home landscapes selected by arboretum superintendent Warren Roberts. The community is invited to celebrate Warren's extraordinary career and wish him well as he prepares to retire after 37 years at the arboretum. The sale and Warren's retirement reception will be held at the Arboretum Teaching Nursery on Garrod Drive, open to the public from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Anyone may join the Friends of the UC Davis Arboretum at the door for a 10 percent member discount and a free plant.

Expert sales assistants will help visitors choose the very best plants for their garden conditions. There will be brightly-colored signs identifying the Arboretum All-Stars, each with a photo of the plant in bloom, a list of its outstanding features, and information about how to grow it. A special focus this year will be on plants that support local pollinators.

Think green - bring a box or wagon to carry your purchases. For a map and plant list, visit

Diane Cary
UC Davis Arboretum
(530) 752-4880
[email protected]

Weed Control Conference: January 11-13, 2010

"Looking into the Future of Weed Control," the 62nd annual conference of the California Weed Science Society, will meet January 11-13, 2010, at the Visalia Convention Center. Topics will include advances in herbicide development, herbicide resistance, organic weed control, and transgenic crops, as well as new research on weed biology and management. For registration or more information, visit

Gale Perez
Weed Research and Information Center
(530) 752-1748
[email protected]


International Drought Symposium: March 24-26, 2010

Save the date for an International Drought Symposium that will meet March 24-26, 2010, organized by the Water Science and Policy Center of UC Riverside. The conference will bring together multidisciplinary teams from California, South Africa, Australia, Mexico, and Spain to address the issue of water scarcity. Scientists, policymakers, and water managers will compare technological, economic, institutional, and policy measures used to combat drought conditions. For more information, visit

Carol O'Brien
Water Science and Policy Center
UC Riverside
(951) 827-5116
[email protected]



*  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *

Visit CA&ES Currents online at

CA&ES Currents, the faculty/staff newsletter of the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences at the University of California, Davis, is published the second Thursday of each month.

News deadline is noon Monday preceding Thursday publication. Send news items to editor, [email protected].

  • Editor: Robin DeRieux
  • Writing: Robin DeRieux, Elisabeth Kauffman, Neal Van Alfen
  • Editorial review: Ann Filmer, Thomas Kaiser

To be added to or deleted from this electronic newsletter list, please send an e-mail to: [email protected].

The University of California does not discriminate in any of its policies, procedures, or practices.
The university is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer.

Student News

Helping hands

Apr 16, 2018 Student volunteers serve the community in Monterey County

Student News - More Student News…
Research News

UC Davis Receives Unique, $1.5 Million Gift from Aggie Couple

Jul 07, 2016 Michael and Joelle Hurlston have pledged $1.5 million to endow a first-of-its-kind chair position.

Research News - More Research News…
Outreach News

Summer Internships

Jul 28, 2015 CA&ES students and Salinas Valley employers find common ground.

Outreach News - More Outreach News…