Aug 20, 2015
Halseth, Secor, Gudmestad and Pavlista receive PAA honors

The Potato Association of America (PAA) recognized Donald Halseth, Gary Secor, Neil Gudmestad and Alexander D. Pavlista as Honorary Life Members during its 99th annual meeting in Portland, Maine, this past July.

Donald Halseth joined the Cornell University potato program in 1981, where he is responsible for Extension and applied research. He served as PAA president in 2010. He is a major collaborator in USDA, Cornell University, University of Maine and North Carolina State University potato breeding programs.

Gary Secor has worked as a potato pathologist at North Dakota State University since receiving his Ph.D. from the University of California, Davis, in 1977. His work has concentrated on late blight management, seed handling and treatment, fusarium dry rot, blemish diseases, zebra chip and disease-free seed potato production.

Neil Gudmestad is a recognized authority on the biology and management of potato diseases caused by several pathogen groups. He joined the plant pathology department at North Dakota State University (NDSU) in 1985. In 2007, Gudmestad was named an inaugural University Distinguished Professor by NDSU. In January 2015, Gudmestad was named the Neil C. Gudmestad endowed chair of potato pathology. The endowed chair position was established by contributions from potato growers, processors and agricultural chemical manufacturers from 13 states.

Alexander Pavlista became the potato specialist the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) in 1988. His research at UNL’s Panhandle Research and Extension Center at Scottsbluff has focused on plant growth regulators and hormones, environmental response, vine desiccation and pest control. He released the cultivar Red Cloud. He has published 42 journal articles on potato and 25 on other crops.

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