Greetings from Des Moines, Iowa!
By now you’ve heard a lot from me about the National Academy of Sciences Prize in Food and Agriculture Sciences Established by the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation…but our excitement about this new award knows no bounds!
Nominations closed last week, and this week I am over the moon and honored to be hosting an event in celebration of the new Prize at the Borlaug Dialogue! On Wednesday morning, we held an event to take advantage of so many food security leaders gathered in one place. What better time and place to welcome this milestone for agriculture than with our partners and colleagues at the Borlaug Dialogue, on the occasion of the 30th Anniversary of the World Food Prize?
A warm thank you to those of you who were able to join us in Des Moines for our celebration. We were most privileged to hear from the following speakers:
- Ms. Pam Johnson, Secretary, Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research Board of Directors; Second Vice President, Maizall and Past President, National Corn Growers Association
- Mr. Lawrence Kent, Senior Program Officer, Agricultural Development Program, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation
- Dr. Ronald Phillips, National Academy of Sciences Member and Regents’ Professor Emeritus and former McKnight Presidential Chair in Genomics, University of Minnesota Department of Agronomy and Plant Genetics
- Ambassador Kenneth Quinn, President, World Food Prize Foundation
For those who weren’t able to be with us, a quick update:
More than 30 contenders were nominated for the first-ever prize dedicated to food and agriculture sciences to be hosted at the Academy. Our friends at NAS tell me that 30+ nominations is a strong showing for the first year of an award.
The first annual recipient will be announced in January 2017.
Save the Date: FFAR and NAS will host a celebratory event, with the winner, in Washington, DC on Thursday, April 27.
Here’s to the first extraordinary recipient of the NAS Prize in Food and Agriculture Sciences recipient, and many more to come!
–Dr. Sally Rockey, Executive Director