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Faculty & Staff In The News
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Newspapers, magazines and television and radio shows often feature the teaching, research and outreach of NC State faculty and staff. The media also quote university sources as experts on scientific, academic, political, economic and cultural topics. Here's a sampling of NC State personnel whose research, achievements or awards have recently been in the news.

Dr. Richard A. Lancia, University Alumni Distinguished Professor of forestry and zoology, has been elected vice president of The Wildlife Society, an international nonprofit scientific and education association dedicated to wildlife stewardship. He will become president in September 2004.

The next time you have a crisp salad or BLT sandwich, you can thank Dr. Randy Gardner for helping make it so good. The professor of horticultural science and tomato-plant breeder has helped create and improve almost two-dozen tomato varieties in North Carolina. Gardner has developed 18 named varieties during his career, many specifically developed for growers in North Carolina.

Rajendra Bhat, a doctoral student, and his mentor -- Dr. Jan Genzer, assistant professor of chemical engineering - published results of their research in the July 23 issue of Langmuir: The American Chemical Society Journal of Surfaces and Colloids. The paper describes their work creating a surface coated with "sticky" molecules in a decreasing density. Like paint from a roller that starts out thick and gradually thins out, this sticky layer captures particles (in this case, gold) in the same pattern of decreasing density - a development of interest to the chemical, pharmaceutical, and petroleum industries, among others.

The genome of Magnaporthe grisea - the fungus that causes rice blast - is now available online at http://www-genome.wi.mit.edu/annotation/fungi/magnaporthe/. According to Dr. Ralph Dean, professor of plant pathology, director of the university's Center for Integrated Fungal Research, and principal investigator of the $1.8 million grant that led to the sequencing of rice blast, it is the first time that the genomic structure of a significant plant pathogen has been made publicly available.

Dr. Gail McLaughlin of Raleigh, assistant professor of physics, has been awarded an Outstanding Junior Investigator Award by the U.S. Department of Energy's Division of Nuclear Physics. She is one of only five recipients this year. The award -- $213,000 over three years -- will help support McLaughlin's research in theoretical nuclear and particle astrophysics, specifically the way nuclear reactions and subatomic particles affect astrophysical objects and vice-versa.

A substance produced by tomatoes repels mosquitoes and other insects more effectively and is safer than DEET, the chemical most commonly used in insect repellents, Dr. Michael Roe has discovered. Indeed, work by the William Neal Reynolds Distinguished Professor of Entomology showed that the natural compound found in tomatoes is so effective at repelling insects that the university patented the substance. The patent describes how the substance may be used to repel not only mosquitoes but also biting flies, roaches, aphids and other insect pests.

Now we can replace hips and knees with fabricated metal joints that work nearly as well as the originals. Dr. Ola L.A. Harrysson and Dr. Denis R. Cormier have taken the technology even further through the use of rapid prototyping, in which a computer image of an object is transferred into two-dimensional cross-sections -- then, layer by layer, machines build a three-dimensional model. The technique has several medical and industrial applications, and is already in use in the College of Veterinary Medicine.

Mary Elizabeth Kurz, vice chancellor and general counsel, received the Distinguished Service Award from the National Association of College and University Attorneys (NACUA) at its 42nd Annual Conference in Boston. The award recognizes individuals who have given extraordinary service both to NACUA and to institutions of higher education over an extended time, in both legal and other capacities.

The North Carolina Press Association (NCPA) named retired Gen. Henry Hugh Shelton its 2002 North Carolinian of the Year at the NCPA's 129th Annual Convention in Asheville. The former Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, currently serving as executive director of the Shelton Initiative for Leadership Development at NC State, is a native of Tarboro, and received a bachelor's degree in textile engineering from the university in 1963.

Dr. John Penick of Cary, department head and professor of mathematics, science and technology education, has been elected president of the National Science Teachers Association (NSTA). His term will begin in June 2003; his one-year term as president-elect began June 1. NSTA is the world's largest professional science teacher organization.

Dr. Linda P. Brady, dean of the College of Humanities and Social Sciences, has been appointed to the U.S. Army War College Board of Visitors. She will serve a two-year term ending in March 2004. The Army War College is a pre-eminent military learning center based in Carlisle Barracks, Pa.

Dr. Kathryn M. Moore of Raleigh, dean of the College of Education, has been inducted into the Ohio State University College of Education Hall of Fame. Ohio State's College of Education Alumni Society bestowed its highest honor on Moore for her contributions and achievements in higher education.

The clinical laboratory at Student Health Services has received formal laboratory accreditation by the Commission on Office Laboratory Accreditation (COLA), a national healthcare accreditation organization. Accreditation is granted only to laboratories that apply strict standards of quality in day-to-day operations, demonstrate continued accuracy in the performance of proficiency testing, and pass a rigorous on-site laboratory survey. "The laboratory has earned COLA accreditation as a result of a long-term commitment to provide quality service to our patients," said Dr. Mary Bengtson, director of NC State's Student Health Services.

Thomas R. Kendig of Cary has been named director of transportation at the university. Kendig comes to NC State from the North Carolina Department of Transportation (NCDOT), where he served the past 14 years as program analyst, project manager and, most recently, consultant engineering unit head for the Project Development and Environmental Analysis Branch.


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