UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Four faculty members in Penn State's College of Agricultural Sciences -- David Mortensen, William Curran, Sjoerd Duiker and Jeffrey Hyde -- and graduate student Matthew Ryan were honored Feb. 7 by the Weed Science Society of America for their outstanding contributions to the field of weed science.
The awards were presented during the society's 51st annual meeting in Portland, Ore.
Mortensen, professor of weed ecology, received a Fellow Award, the highest recognition given by the society. He also received the Outstanding Research Award for his work to determine local and regional patterns in pest populations and exploration of the impact on management methods.
A specialist in sustainable weed and pest-management practices, Mortensen recently completed four years as chair of Penn State's Intercollege Graduate Degree Program in Ecology. He has played an active role in support of weed-science research and outreach -- testifying before Congress and chairing grants programs for the Natural Resources Institute and the USDA.
Curran, professor of weed science, Duiker, associate professor of soil management and applied soil physics, and Hyde, associate professor of agricultural economics, received the Outstanding Paper Award along with Ruth Mischler, a former graduate student and Fulbright scholar in crop and soil sciences. Their paper, "Use of a Rolled-rye Cover Crop for Weed Suppression in No-Till Soybeans," was judged to be the outstanding contribution to the journal Weed Technology in the past year.
Ryan, a postdoctoral scholar in weed ecology, received the Outstanding Graduate Student Award, which honors a graduate student who has high academic achievement, sound training in weed science and excellent potential for future development. Ryan, who earned his doctorate in 2010, currently is working on a USDA Organic Research and Extension Initiative project testing weed- and insect-management strategies in organic, rotational, no-till grain-production systems.
The Weed Science Society of America is a nonprofit professional society founded in 1956 to encourage and promote the development of knowledge concerning weeds and their impact on the environment. The society promotes research, education and extension activities related to weeds, provides science-based information to the public and policy makers, and fosters awareness of weeds and their impacts on managed and natural ecosystems.