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College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences


OSU Plant Pathologist Awarded for Excellence in Extension Outreach and Education

July 29, 2009

WOOSTER, Ohio – An Ohio State University Extension plant pathologist has been awarded the American Phytopathological Society Excellence in Extension Award, in part for furthering national educational efforts on soybean rust.


Anne Dorrance, who is also an associate professor with the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center, will accept the award during the APS annual meeting in Portland, Ore., in August. Previous Ohio State University Extension plant pathology recipients include Mike Ellis and Pat Lipps.

"It's a humbling experience because some great people from Ohio State University, who are great mentors and leaders, have been recipients of this award and it really is great to be recognized and be a part of that group," said Dorrance.

She was quick to add that her acceptance of the award is for all of Extension and the recognition extends to her team of colleagues who help make her job possible.

"To have excellence in Extension, it's not just you as a person. It's a recognition for both of the teams of colleagues I've worked with on the national soybean rust Extension effort, and my ability know what Ohio growers need through our own Agronomic Crops Team," said Dorrance. "And that's really a reflection of the Extension system we have here in the state. I could not do my job if I didn't have educators out in the field."

The award recognizes an APS member for excellence in Extension plant pathology. Nominees are individuals who have made outstanding contributions by creating, developing or implementing Extension-related programs or materials or who have provides significant leadership in an area of Extension plant pathology.

"I'm researching problems important to Ohio producers. To get a call from the producer and to know there's this problem out there and have an answer ready, you know, it's like that Mastercard commercial – it's just priceless," said Dorrance. "I hope we don't ever lose that because this award is only possible because of those things."

Dorrance leads research and outreach efforts on a wide range of key soybean-related diseases, including Phytophthora root and stem rot, Pythium, Sclerotinia stem rot, soybean cyst nematode, brown stem rot, and Rhizoctonia solani.

She received her A.S. degree in biology from Herkimer County Community College, her B.S. degree in forest biology from SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry, her M.S. degree in plant pathology from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, and her Ph.D. degree in plant pathology from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. She joined the Department of Plant Pathology at Ohio State University in 1997.

Dorrance was recently elected as APS Councilor at Large for a three-year term. For more information on her contributions, log on to the APS Web site at


Candace Pollock
Anne Dorrance