Dr. Jessica Goldberger, Washington State University
Dr. Goldberger is an associate professor in the College of Agriculture, Human, and Natural Resource Sciences. She works in the area of sociology of agriculture and food systems with a research focus on agricultural knowledge, science, and technology. She is interested in the sources of agricultural knowledge; the adoption and diffusion of agricultural innovations; and the ways in which agricultural beliefs, choices, and practices affect community well-being, sustainability, rural quality of life, food security, and the environment. She uses a diversity of investigative methods, such as mail and web surveys, interviews, focus groups, and collection of secondary data. Most of her work is conducted as part of multi-disciplinary, multi-institutional, and integrated (research, education, and outreach) teams.
Dr. Asa Bradman, Univeristy of California, Berkeley
Dr. Bradman is an environmental health scientist and expert in exposure assessment and epidemiology focusing on occupational and environmental exposures to pregnant women, children, and farmworkers living in agricultural communities. He co-founded CERCH and also helps lead an initiative to improve environmental quality in California child care facilities. Dr. Bradman leads environmental health studies focusing on pesticides, flame retardants, metals, emerging pollutants, VOCs, indoor air quality, and other contaminants. He also participates in extensive community outreach and education and interfaces with other scientists, state and federal agencies, policy makers, industry, and the general public. He is Chair of the California Biomonitoring Scientific Guidance Panel and was appointed to the USDA National Organic Standards Board in 2016. He will contribute a public health perspective to the discussion of inadvertent chemical contamination of organic crops.
Dr. Tim Delbridge, Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo
Dr. Delbridge is an agricultural economist with research interests in farm financial management, production economics, and risk management. As an assistant professor for the College of Agriculture Food & Environmental Sciences at Cal Poly, he teaches courses in agribusiness management, credit and finance, and risk management. His Current research topics include the spatial patterns of cropping system adoption decisions, economic feasibility of automation in specialty crops, and the economic impacts of insect pests on specialty crop producers. He is also interested in defining and modeling economic and non-economic costs of inadvertent contamination for farmers and other supply chain stakeholders, in order to quantify the true costs of contamination.
Dr. William Dyer, Montana State University
Dr. Dyer is a Professor of Physiology and Molecular Biology of Plant Stress at Montana State University. His research interests include the physiology and molecular biology of herbicide resistance in weedy plants and he teaches sustainable agriculture, plant biology, herbicide physiology and molecular biology. He seeks to understand the physiological strategies used by plants that are highly successful as weeds in agricultural settings. In particular, he studies the mechanisms by which weeds evolve resistance to herbicides. Recently, Dr. Dyer has conducted work to determine the mode of glyphosate contamination by examining its pathway of contamination within the affected crop.
Dr. Neva Hassanein, University of Montana
Dr. Hassanein is a Professor of Environmental studies and her work has explored specific policy issues regarding topics such as food safety, pesticides, water pollution, the National Organic Program, and agricultural biotechnology. She actively engages in interdisciplinary scholarship and civic participation in environmental affairs. Dr. Hassanein’s professional and academic background reflects her interest in the theory and practice of social change with respect to solving urgent environmental and social problems and a focus on the food system. She recently presented a TEDx talk on “Cultivating Food Democracy,” a concept she defines as citizens having the power to determine agri-food policies and practice them locally, regionally, nationally, and globally.
Dr. Bruce Maxwell, Montana State University
Dr. Maxwell is a Professor of Agroecology and Weed Science at Montana State University. His research and teaching specialize in applied plant ecology including agroecology, invasive plant ecology and weed biology with particular interest in the design and development of sustainable production systems and adaptive management strategies for annual and perennial weeds in crop and natural ecosystems. His expertise includes plant population and community modeling to understand invasive weed dynamics (both temporal and spatial) and their impacts on the ecosystems they occupy. Historically, he has conducted research on crop-weed competition, herbicide resistance evolution, and economic thresholds of weeds and invasive species. Recently, he has begun to examine glyphosate contamination in grain crops in Montana.
Mr. Michael O’Donnell, Purdue University
Mr. O’Donnell is an Organic and Diversified Agriculture Educator for Purdue University Extension. He works with farmers of all scales and enterprises looking to shift acres into certified organic production. He works closely with Indiana grain farmers transitioning acreage into organic grain production, and offers educational programs on organic field crop/grain production for farmers and other agricultural professionals. He is also passionate about the application of regenerative agriculture principles in all types of farming systems. Chemical contamination, particularly from drift, is a major concern for farmers in Mr. O’Donnell’s region and he has suffered losses on his own farm from chemical contamination, fueling his dedication to finding solutions to this problem.
Dr. Kathleen Merrigan, Arizona State University
Dr. Merrigan, former U.S. Deputy Secretary of Agriculture (2009–2013), is currently the executive director of the Swette Center for Sustainable Food Systems at Arizona State University. As Deputy Secretary, she created and led the “Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food Initiative” to support local food systems, and made history as the first woman to chair the Ministerial Conference of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations. Before joining the USDA, Merrigan held a variety of agriculture policy positions, including faculty member at the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University, Administrator of the USDA Agricultural Marketing Service, and senior staff on the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, where she wrote the law establishing national standards for organic food. Throughout her career Dr. Merrigan notes the issue of chemical contamination for organic farmers as a longstanding issue.
Dr. Jessica Shade, The Organic Center
Dr. Shade is the Director of Science Programs at The Organic Center where she directs projects associated with communicating and conducting research related to organic agriculture. She has extensive experience communicating scientific research to the public, farmers, policy makers and other researchers and has managed several OREI funded conferences and planning grant projects. She works closely with academics, relevant grower and industry organizations including Farmer Advisory Council (FAC), California Certified Organic Farms (CCOF), the Organic Trade Association (OTA), and industry leaders like Clifbar, Whole Foods, and General Mills. Her project portfolio at the Center is diverse with her most recent projects including organic solutions to citrus greening disease, integrated pest management in southern organic rice systems, development of best management practices for manure application on organic farms to ensure food safety, and identifying organic practices that simultaneously increase soil health, climate change mitigation and crop yield.
Dr. Xin-Gen “Shane” Zhou, Texas A&M University
Dr. Zhou is an Associate Professor & Research Plant Pathologist specializing in the epidemiology and disease management for rice and other bioenergy crops. His research helps to better understand disease incidence and severity in response to changes in population genetics of pathogens, rice varieties, environmental conditions, cultural practices, and fungicide use. Current research projects include evaluating and identifying disease resistance, exploiting beneficial microorganisms and cover crops for biocontrol of diseases, and evaluating the impacts of fungicides on disease epidemics, grain yield, and quality. The ultimate goal of his applied research program is to develop effective disease management tools and provide economically and environmentally sound disease management recommendations for rice production. Inadvertent chemical contamination has been a major concern for his farming region.
Dr. Amber Sciligo, The Organic Center
Dr. Sciligo is the Manager of Science Programs at The Organic Center. She is responsible for carrying out day-to-day operations at The Center, including coordinating the communication of the scientific programs and outside research in collaborations, translating scientific literature as it pertains to organic for non-scientific audiences, and communicating with stakeholders. Dr. Sciligo will carry out communication and logistical tasks associated with survey development and dissemination and the in-person meeting aspect of this proposal. She will manage writing and disseminating of announcements, social media communications, stakeholder communication, organizing contractors and speakers, and assisting in all other administrative tasks. One of Dr. Sciligo’s main roles at the Center is to manage grant writing and in this role, she will facilitate the research team in developing and submitting a full OREI proposal as the main deliverable for this project.