Message from the Director

A message about 2015 from ABR Director Doug Buhler.

This past year marks another impressive slate of Michigan State University (MSU) research advancements in the areas of food, energy and the environment. A small sample of the work led by MSU AgBioResearch scientists is featured in this report. In 2015, these researchers alone secured more than $90 million in grant funding from external agencies, such as the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and the National Science Foundation, with impacts spanning from Michigan to around the globe.

As director of MSU AgBioResearch and MSU assistant vice president for research and graduate studies (the latter is a new post effective October 2015), it is my privilege to help meet the university’s research goals and objectives. I’ve been working with Stephen Hsu, vice president for research and graduate studies, to ensure that MSU AgBioResearch leverages its external funding to its fullest and works to integrate the university’s priorities. It’s also exciting to be involved with MSU’s new Global Impact Initiative, aimed at adding more than 100 new faculty members to enhance research endeavors around energy, health, education, the environment, national security and global development.

The College of Agriculture and Natural Resources (CANR) is strengthening communication with U.S. Congressional members from Michigan. We connect weekly with U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow, who serves on the Senate committees of Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, and Energy and Natural Resources, to inform her and her office staff of ongoing research endeavors at MSU. And thanks to a special invitation from U.S. Rep. John Moolenaar, I had the honor of testifying before the House Agriculture Subcommittee on Biotechnology, Horticulture and Research in 2015. We look forward to the opportunity to have additional MSU scientists addressing important issues before Congress in the year ahead.

The end of 2015 also marked the retirement of Fred Poston, CANR dean and longtime MSU leader. He has dedicated so much not only to the CANR, but to the entire university. I wish him well in his retirement and future endeavors. In the meantime, the CANR has temporarily handed the leadership over to me once again. I'm also pleased to share the recommendation of Ronald Hendrick as the new CANR dean, effective July 1, 2016.

Wishing you a wonderful 2016!

Douglas D. Buhler
MSU AgBioResearch Director
MSU Assistant Vice President of Research and Graduate Studies

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