Scientific Honors

Five CAFNR faculty members elected Fellows in AAAS

Five faculty members in the College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources have been elected to the rank of Fellow in the American Association for the Advancement of Science; seven were selected University-wide in 2011.

The newest CAFNR AAAS Fellows include: Gretchen Hagen, research professor of biochemistry; Mike McMullen, adjunct professor of plant sciences; Steve Pallardy, professor of forestry; Jack Schultz, director of the Bond Life Sciences Center and professor of plant sciences; and Gary Weisman, professor of biochemistry.

Hagen is a member of the American Society for Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, and the American Society of Plant Biologists, from which she received the Charles Reid Barnes Life Membership Award in 2009. Her research has focused on how auxin, a hormone, controls gene transcription and expression in plants. Hagen received her Ph.D. from the University of Georgia.

McMullen serves as a research geneticist with the USDA-Agricultural Research Service Plant Genetics Research Unit. His work focuses on understanding the genetic, biological and molecular basis of agronomic traits in maize, particularly host plants’ response to pathogens and pests. McMullen received his Ph.D. from the University of Chicago.

Pallardy’s research explores the physiological responses of plants to water stress and comparative water relations, ultimately leading to generalizations about how drought resistance of economically important plant species may be genetically improved. Pallardy received his Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin.

Schultz is the leader of a chemical ecology laboratory; the lab’s research focuses on explaining patterns seen in nature by their underlying mechanisms. Studies require a multidisciplinary approach, including ecology, biochemistry and molecular biology. Current studies look at plant defensive chemistry and insect herbivores. Schultz received a Ph.D. from the University of Washington.

Weisman has served on the editorial boards of Biomedical Research and Purinergic Signalling. His research efforts include working to determine the molecular mechanisms through which activation of receptors within cells can be used to treat human disease. Weisman received his Ph.D. from the University of Nebraska.

The American Association for the Advancement of Science, founded in 1848, is an international non-profit organization dedicated to advancing science around the world by serving as an educator, leader, spokesperson and professional association. AAAS provides the science news website EurekAlert!; publishes the global science weekly “Science,” as well as many scientific newsletters, books and reports; and spearheads programs that raise the bar of understanding for science worldwide. Learn more at

In 2011, the AAAS Council selected 539 members as Fellows. These individuals will be recognized for their contributions to science and technology at the Fellows Forum, Feb. 18, 2012, during the AAAS annual meeting, Vancouver, B.C. The new Fellows receive a certificate and blue and gold rosette as a symbol of their distinguished accomplishments. See the complete list of newly elected fellows at