WOOSTER, Ohio -- Larry Madden, an international authority on plant epidemiology with Ohio State University's Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center (OARDC), has received the American Phytopathological Society's (APS) 2003 Ruth Allen Award, the organization's top research award. Madden, a professor in the Department of Plant Pathology based on OARDC's Wooster campus, was presented the award on Aug. 10 at the APS annual meeting in Charlotte, N.C. Attending were 1,500 members of APS, the world's largest professional society of plant pathologists. Each year, APS gives the Ruth Allen Award to a person who has made an outstanding, innovative contribution to research that has changed or has the potential to change the direction of research in a field of plant pathology. Madden, a Pennsylvania native who joined OARDC in 1980, has pioneered the use of many modeling approaches to analyze, compare and understand the spatial and temporal components of plant disease epidemics. He has used his research results to predict the risk of disease outbreaks and the rates of disease spread. Also, for more than 15 years, he has conducted groundbreaking research on rain-splash dispersal of plant pathogens. His findings have directly affected individuals around the world who work to quantify and understand plant epidemics. "I was nominated by my department, so I felt honored that my co-workers thought that I deserved the recognition," Madden said. "I came to OARDC for a position to work on virus epidemiology after my Ph.D. 23 years ago," he said. "I liked it a lot here. After a couple of years I was able to take a faculty position in the plant pathology department. I have no desire to work anywhere else. I am treated very well here, and I can do the type of work that I want. I can pursue the things that really excite me in my research and profession." Madden has authored or co-authored more than 150 scientific papers, 24 book chapters and one book. He is in great demand as a lecturer nationally and internationally. He has recently taken a role in addressing the threat of bioterrorism to U.S. crops and making proposals, based on his epidemiological research, for better response plans to attack. Madden served as editor-in-chief of Phytopathology, the major international scientific journal of plant pathology, from 1991 to 1993 and was president of APS from 1996 to 1997. He has received several other honors in recognition of his accomplishments, including the Ciba-Geigy Award from APS; the Distinguished Senior Researcher Award from Ohio State's College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (OARDC is the research arm of that college); and the Ohio State University Distinguished Scholar Award. - 30 - Editor: Further details about Madden and the award are available at http://www.apsnet.org/members/awards/2003Awardees.asp#RUTH%20ALLEN%20AWARD. A photograph of Madden is available from Ken Chamberlain, (330) 263-3779, or Jodi Miller, (614) 292-9653.