2018 Roger L. Mitchell Fellow: Robert E. Sharp
Robert E. Sharp has been with the University of Missouri since 1986, first serving as an assistant professor in the Department of Horticulture. He has been a professor of agronomy in the Division of Plant Sciences since 1997.
Sharp has led Mizzou's Interdisciplinary Plant Group as its director since 2011. IPG includes faculty, students, postdoctoral fellows and professionals, among others, and encourages interdisciplinary and collaborative research and education through seminars, workshops, symposiums, training programs and partnerships.
Sharp has earned numerous awards and honors and has been highly involved during his time at Mizzou, including presenting at professional meetings across the world. He has earned nearly $18 million in grant support, through research, conference support and training grants. He has a long history of advising M.S. and Ph.D. students as well.
"Bob Sharp embodies all that was great about Dr. Mitchell," said William Wiebold, professor in the Division of Plant Sciences. "He's smart and engages that intellect on a real world challenge with real impact. And, he willingly serves in leadership and mentoring capacities so that his impact is multiplied numerous times. He makes everyone that he touches better at what they do. Dr. Sharp clearly deserves and will bring honor to this Fellow."
Dr. Sharp's research is known and has impact throughout the world. For some individuals this may sound hyperbolic, but with Dr. Sharp it is an understatement. He has chosen to study a topic, drought, that plagues nearly every country on earth and affects the health and wellbeing of several billion people. His work starts at, literally, the root of the problem. Dr. Sharp has focused like a laser on root biology and using that knowledge to ameliorate the effects of drought stress on plant growth and productivity.
William Wiebold, Professor, Division of Plant Sciences