UC ANR Sustainable Food Systems Strategic Initiative Conference
Strengthening Our Connections: People, Issues and Policy
October 11-13, 2011
Biographies of Presenters
Barbara Allen-Diaz was appointed Vice President – Agriculture and Natural Resources on September 15, 2011.
As systemwide vice president for the University of California Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources
(ANR), Allen-Diaz leads a statewide research and public service organization responsible for activities in
agriculture, natural resources, environmental sciences, family and consumer sciences, forestry, human and
community development, 4-H/ youth development and related areas.
In the Division of Agriculture and Natural Resources, Allen-Diaz served as associate vice president-Academic
Programs and Strategic Initiatives since 2009 and as assistant vice president–programs from 2007 to 2009. She is
currently on leave from her position as a tenured faculty member in the College of Natural Resources on the
Berkeley campus, where she has worked since 1986. She also holds the prestigious Russell Rustici Chair in
Allen-Diaz was among 2,000 scientists recognized for their work on the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate
Change (IPCC), when the Nobel Peace Prize was awarded jointly to the IPCC and Vice President Al Gore in
2007. Allen-Diaz's contributions focused on the effects of climate change on rangeland species and landscapes.
She has authored more than 160 research articles and presentations and is an active participant in her professional
society; she has served on its board of directors and on various government panels.
Allen-Diaz earned a B.A. in anthropology, an M.S. in range management and a Ph.D. in wildland resource
sciences, all from UC Berkeley.
Dr. Rob Atwill received a Doctorate of Veterinary Medicine in 1990 and a Master of Preventive Veterinary
Medicine in 1991 from the University of California at Davis. He then received his Ph.D. in Epidemiology and
Infectious Diseases in 1994 from Cornell University, Ithaca, NY.
His current faculty appointment is split between the Department of Population Health and Reproduction and
Veterinary Medicine Extension, School of Veterinary Medicine, UC Davis and functions as the Director of the
Western Institute for Food Safety and Security. The primary goal of his academic program is to identify
management strategies for minimizing microbial contamination of food, surface water supplies and ground water
resources and characterizing the underlying processes of environmental dissemination of microbial hazards in
rural and agricultural landscapes. He and co-authors have published over 300 peer-reviewed papers, proceedings
or abstracts and he functions as a scientific technical advisor for numerous regional, state, and federal agencies.
James Bartolome is a UC Berkeley professor of rangeland ecology in the Department of Environmental Science,
Policy, and Management. Bartolome joined UC as assistant specialist in 1976 in the UC Berkeley Department of
Forestry. In 1978 he was appointed assistant professor and assistant range ecologist at Berkeley. Most of his
research has been conducted on the conservation, restoration, and management of Mediterranean grasslands and
savannahs. He is an elected fellow of the Society for Range Management, Trustee of Deep Springs College,
certified range manager, chair of the UC Berkeley Interdepartmental Graduate Group in Range Management, and
former Director of ANR’s Integrated Hardwood Range Management Program. Bartolome earned an A.B. degree
in biology from UC Santa Barbara, a M.S. in range management from UC Berkeley, and a Ph.D. in wildland
resource science from UC Berkeley. Bartolome is the leader of the ANR Sustainable Natural Ecosystems (SNE)
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Dr. Christine Bruhn has expertise in consumer behavior, food science, and food safety. As Director of the
Center for Consumer Research and Consumer Food Marketing Specialist in the Department of Food Science and
Technology, she studies consumer attitudes toward produce safety and quality and guides educational programs
that inform consumers about new products and new technologies. Dr. Bruhn has authored over one hundred forty
professional papers on consumer attitudes toward food. Dr. Bruhn is a Fellow of the Institute of Food
Technologists in the United States and the Institute of Food Science and Technology in the United Kingdom. She
has provided consultations to the FAO and WHO on food safety and food irradiation. In 2011 Dr. Bruhn
completed a four year term on the FDA Risk Communication Advisory Committee.
David Campbell is a political scientist in the Human and Community Development Department at the University
of California, Davis. He serves on the faculty as a Cooperative Extension Specialist, working in the area of local
governance and leadership with the goal of deepening the practice of democratic citizenship in California
communities. Dr. Campbell’s research examines the intersection between public policy and community
development processes at the local level. For the past 15 years he has evaluated welfare-to-work, workforce
development, and youth development programs in California, including the faith-based initiative of former
Governor Gray Davis. Since January 2011 he has served as the ANR strategic initiative leader for Healthy
Families and Communities.
DeeDee D’Adamo serves as Senior Policy Advisor to Congressman Dennis Cardoza (California’s 18th
Congressional District) and previously served in this capacity and also as Legislative Director for Congressman
Gary Condit. DeeDee has developed an expertise in agricultural and environmental policy, and has worked on
several Farm Bills, with a focus on programs that benefit California agriculture.
Ms. D’Adamo also serves on the California Air Resources Board. She was appointed as the Law Member to the
Board by Governor Davis in 1999, reappointed by Governor Schwarzenegger in 2004 and currently serves under
the Brown Administration. Ms. D’Adamo also serves on the California Partnership for the San Joaquin Valley, a
public-private partnership whose mission is to improve economic, environmental and social equity conditions in
the San Joaquin Valley.
As a visiting lecturer for the California State University, Stanislaus from 1992-1998, Ms. D’Adamo has taught
courses for in the Department of Politics, ranging from U.S. and California government, environmental policy and
land use policy.
Ms. D’Adamo received a B.A. in Political Science/Public Service from the University of California, Davis and a
Juris Doctorate from the University of the Pacific, McGeorge School of Law.
David Doll serves Merced County specializing in Almond, Pistachio, and Walnut and is one of the “newer” county
extension advisors hired. Conducting research and providing service to his 1200+ clientele who farm over 110,000
acres of perennial crops, he also finds time to tend to his weekly updated blog, “The Almond Doctor.” Raised on a
small family farm of apples and peaches in Southern Indiana, he received his B.S. from Purdue University and his M.S.
from the Department of Plant Pathology at UC Davis.
Daniel M. Dooley was appointed University of California (UC) Vice President - Division of Agriculture and
Natural Resources (ANR) effective January 2, 2008 and Senior Vice President External Relations effective March
19, 2009. Dooley’s External Relations responsibilities include directing the University offices of State and
Federal Government Relations, Alumni Affairs and Institutional Advocacy, and Communications. He reports
directly to the President of the University of California System.
Dooley is a distinguished agricultural and environmental attorney with extensive experience in California. Prior
to joining the University, Dooley was a partner at Dooley, Herr and Peltzer, LLP, a law firm emphasizing
agricultural, environmental, business and water rights law. He distinguished himself by successfully bridging
environmental and economic considerations in a number of controversial legal cases. He was a partner from 1980-
2002 in the family-owned Dooley Farms, a diversified San Joaquin Valley farming operation producing cotton,
alfalfa and walnuts, which continues operation under next generation family management.
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Dooley previously served as Chief Deputy Director of the California Department of Food and Agriculture (1977-
80) and Chair of the California Water Commission (1982-86). He currently serves on the National Academy of
Science Board on Agriculture and Natural Resources, the Western Rural Development Center Board, the
California Board on Food and Agriculture, and the Board of Trustees of Children's Hospital Central California,
which he previously chaired.
In 2007, Dooley was cited by California Lawyer magazine’s Lawyer of the Year publication for his work to
achieve settlement of two-decades-old litigation relating to the San Joaquin River. In 2004, he was inducted into
the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service Research
Hall of Fame. He also received the UC Davis College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences Award of
Distinction in 2000.
Cindy Fake has served Placer and Nevada Counties as Horticulture and Small Farms Advisor since 2001. She
has an MS in International Agricultural Development from UC Davis, specializing in vegetable crops and
agroforestry. Cindy’s programs provide information and training to small-scale horticultural growers on
sustainable crop production, soil fertility, pest management and marketing. Her crop responsibilities include citrus
and deciduous tree fruit, vegetables, winegrapes, Christmas trees, nursery and ornamental crops. Cindy’s small
farm programs focus on small farm viability and include beginning farmer training, business planning, direct
marketing and agritourism.
Gail Feenstra is the Food Systems Coordinator at the Agricultural Sustainability Institute (ASI) and University of
California Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Program (SAREP). SAREP’s Food Systems Program
encourages the development of regional food systems that link farmers, consumers and communities. Feenstra’s
research and outreach includes: farm-to-school and farm-to-institution evaluation, regional food system
distribution, values-based supply chains, food access/ food security for low-income populations, food system
assessments and local food policy. Feenstra has a doctorate in nutrition education from Teachers College,
Columbia University with an emphasis in public health. She enjoys shopping at farmers markets, gardening,
cooking meals using local ingredients and watching her four backyard chickens.
Matt Fidelibus, is an Associate Cooperative Extension Specialist in the Department of Viticulture and Enology,
UC Davis, located at the Kearney Agricultural Center, Parlier. He conducts applied research to develop or refine
cultural practices that improve the yield and quality of raisin, table and wine grapes, and extends those findings,
along with general viticulture information, in a variety of ways including via Facebook
(http://www.facebook.com/viticulture) and Twitter (http://twitter.com/grapetweets). He earned a B.S. in Biology
from San Diego State University, an M.S. in Plant Biology from Arizona State University and a Ph.D. in
Horticultural Sciences from the University of Florida.
Bill Frost is the Assistant Director of Cooperative Extension and Associate Director of ANRs Research and
Extension Center System. In this ever changing role he is responsible for providing leadership to the statewide
Cooperative Extension System, the nine Research and Extension Centers, and ANRs Academic Personnel Unit.
Bill previously had a leadership role within ANR serving eight years as the Program Leader for Natural Resources
and Animal Agriculture. He earned degrees in range science from UC Davis and his doctorate in range
management from the University of Arizona. He has utilized this expertise during his 20 year career with
Cooperative Extension in Arizona and California, serving as an area natural resource advisor in the Central Sierra
Nevada for 14 years and as County Director in El Dorado County for 10 years. His programmatic background is
in rangeland management with a long history of research and educational programs dealing with rangeland
ecology and management as well and on the ground resource monitoring approaches.
Beth Grafton-Cardwell is director of the Lindcove Research and Extension Center and a Cooperative Extension
entomology specialist with a UC Riverside appointment based at Kearney Agricultural Research & Extension
Center. In her specialist role, Grafton-Cardwell develops IPM strategies to manage arthropod pests of citrus in the
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San Joaquin Valley. Recently she has led efforts to educate the public about Asian citrus psyllid and the disease it
spreads, Huanglongbing or citrus greening. Grafton-Cardwell is the ANR Endemic & Invasive Pests and Diseases
(EIPD) Strategic Initiative leader.
Shermain Hardesty is an Extension Economist in the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, UC
Davis; she also serves as director of the UC Small Farm Program. She is responsible for research and outreach
related to local and regional food systems, small farms and cooperatives. Shermain is a board member of the
California Sheep Commission. Her current projects include assessing the factors affecting the development of
values-based food supply chains, assessing the impact of food safety compliance requirements on smaller farms,
and compiling an inventory of livestock harvest and processing facilities in California that provide services to
individual ranchers. Shermain is a co-author of the recently published USDA report, Comparing the Structure,
Size, and Performance of Local and Mainstream Food Supply Chains.
Prior to rejoining UC in 2002 to serve as Director of the Center for Cooperatives, Shermain was a faculty member
at Michigan State University, a food marketing and economics consultant to various farming operations, food
processors and commodity boards, and Senior Economist for a rice marketing cooperative. She earned her Ph.D.
in Agricultural Economics from UC Davis.
Dr. Linda Harris is a Specialist in Cooperative Extension in Microbial Food Safety in the Department of Food
Science and Technology at UC Davis. She is also the Associate Director at the Western Institute for Food Safety
and Security (WIFSS) and a PI for the Western Center for Food Safety. Linda oversees a research
program focused on developing and validating standard microbiological methods for a variety of produce items
with a goal to evaluate the behavior of foodborne pathogens on fruits, vegetables and tree nuts under different
storage and processing conditions. These methods have also been used to evaluate antimicrobial treatments
including various sanitizers and thermal processes for their efficacy in reducing microbial populations on produce,
tree nut and equipment surfaces. Linda is actively involved with the International Association of Food Protection
(IAFP). She was awarded the IAFP Educator Award in 2004 in recognition of her academic contributions to the
field of food protection and the IAFP Frozen Food Foundation Research Award in 2010. Dr. Harris has recently
served two terms on the National Advisory Committee on the Microbiological Criteria for Foods.
Rose Hayden-Smith is the leader of the ANR Sustainable Food System Strategic Initiative and the Cooperative
Extension county director and youth, family and community development advisor for Ventura County.
In her advisor role, she develops programs for youth and adult extenders that focus on agricultural literacy and
gardening. She previously worked with the Master Gardener Program and the UC Hansen Agricultural Center as
educational programs coordinator. Recently she served as a Kellogg Food and Society Policy Fellow. As a
Kellogg fellow, Hayden-Smith developed a national media and educational campaign to promote school, home
and community garden efforts and public policies that would support those efforts.
Richard Howitt is currently a Professor of Agricultural and Resource Economics and Department Chair at the
University of California, Davis. He has been a faculty member at UC Davis since 1975. His current research
interests are in the following areas: disaggregated economic modeling methods, testing market mechanisms for
the allocation of water resources using experimental economics, and implementing empirical dynamic stochastic
methods. Current applications include the optimal management of reservoirs, alternative configurations for the
Sacramento Delta, a futures market for California water, and the economic impacts of drought in the California.
Thomas Harter, Ph.D., received a B.S. in hydrology from the Universities of Freiburg, Germany and a M.S. in
hydrology from the University of Stuttgart, Germany. He received his Ph.D. in hydrology (with emphasis on
subsurface hydrology) at the University of Arizona, where he became the 1991 Harshbarger fellow for
outstanding research in subsurface flow and transport modeling. In 1995, he joined the faculty at the Department
of Land, Air, and Water Resources, University of California, Davis. His research focuses on nonpoint-source
pollution of groundwater, groundwater resources evaluation under uncertainty, groundwater modeling, and
contaminant transport. Dr. Harter's research group has done extensive modeling, laboratory, and field work to
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evaluate the impacts of agriculture and human activity on groundwater flow and contaminant transport in complex
aquifer and soil systems. In 2007, Dr. Harter was appointed Robert M. Hagan Endowed Chair in Water
Management and Policy. Also in 2008, Dr. Harter's research and extension program received the Kevin J. Neese
Award in recognition of its efforts to engage scientists, regulators, farm advisors, dairy industry representatives,
and dairy farmers to better understand the effects of dairy operations on water quality.
Louise Jackson is Professor and Cooperative Extension Specialist at the University of California, Davis. She
holds the Orr Chair in Environmental Plant Science and is a co-Chair of the DIVERSITAS network on
agrobiodiversity. Her research is focused on utilizing biodiversity to increase ecosystem services in intensive
agricultural systems, and on developing participatory processes for public involvement in biodiversity issues in
agricultural landscapes, especially as relevant to climate change. She is a frequent contributor to regional,
national, and international organizations on topics related to plant and soil ecology, agricultural sustainability,
utilization of biodiversity, and land use change.
Ermias Kebreab, B.Sc., M.Sc., Ph.D., Professor and Sesnon Endowed Chair, Department of Animal Science,
University of California, Davis. Dr. Kebreab obtained his B.Sc. from the University of Asmara, Eritrea; M.Sc
.and Ph.D. from the University of Reading, United Kingdom. He worked at the University of Guelph as an
Adjunct Professor and in 2007 he was awarded the Canada Research Chair in Modeling Sustainable Agricultural
Systems at the University of Manitoba. He joined UC Davis in 2009 and part of his mandate was to study
sustainability issues in animal agriculture. Some of the awards received in recognition of Dr. Kebreab’s work
include the 'Young Scientist Award' from the Canadian Society of Animal Science, and the 'Early Career
Achievement Award' from the American Society of Animal Science. He has authored more than 100 peer-
reviewed journal articles, 21 book chapters, and has edited 4 books.
Claire Kremen is Associate Professor in the Department of Environmental Science, Policy and Management at
University of California, Berkeley, and an Associate Conservationist with the Wildlife Conservation Society. She
is an ecologist and conservation biologist whose work focuses on understanding and characterizing the
relationship between biodiversity and ecosystem services, and utilizing this information to develop conservation
and sustainable management plans, considering both protected areas and the working lands matrix around them.
Her current research focuses on exploring the ecological, social and economic benefits, costs and barriers to
adoption of diversified farming systems, and on restoring pollination and pest control services in intensively
farmed landscapes, using both predictive modeling and field studies. Her work reaches from theory to practice
and includes hands-on conservation action such as, for example, the design and establishment of one of
Madagascar’s largest national parks within an integrated conservation-development framework. She was awarded
a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship in 2007 for her contributions to ecology, agriculture and biodiversity. She is
a scientific advisor for several conservation organizations and sits on the Editorial Boards of Conservation Letters
and the Quarterly Review of Biology.
Mark Lubell, UC Davis professor and director of the Center for Environmental Policy and Behavior,
studies collective-action problems in theory, lab, and field settings using quantitative and qualitative empirical
methods. Collective-action problems occur when individuals make self-interested decisions that produce socially
undesirable outcomes. People encounter collective-action problems on a daily basis. For example, many people
are familiar with the difficulties of encouraging people to cooperate to clean a house or apartment. Collective-
action problems occur when everyone is willing to free ride, and therefore nothing is accomplished.
Joy Mench is a Professor in the Department of Animal Science and the Director of the Center for Animal
Welfare at the University of California, Davis. She conducts research on the behavior and welfare of animals,
particularly poultry, and teaches courses on animal welfare and the ethics of animal use. She has served on
numerous committees and boards related to farm animal welfare, including for the World Animal Health
Organization (OIE), the U.N. Food and Agricultural Organization, Safeway, McDonald’s, Sysco, the Food
Marketing Institute, and the National Council of Chain Restaurants. She is the recipient of the Poultry Science
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Association’s Poultry Welfare Research Award (2004) and the University of California Davis Distinguished
Scholarly Public Service Award (2007).
Michael Miller: As president and founder of Brown·Miller Communications, Inc., Michael has spent more than
30 years developing solid, fact-based communications campaigns that deliver success. He is the recipient of over
50 public relations awards, and is a three-time recipient of the nation’s highest award for public relations, the
Public Relations Society of America’s Silver Anvil.
Working aggressively in the area of public policy, Michael leans heavily on research to understand evolving
issues and opportunities. That research allows him to craft comprehensive communications plans that influence
policymakers, community leaders and other thought leaders in support of his clients. His deep understanding of
agricultural, food and health issues gives him the insight to pull from a deep well of communications strategies to
build proactive communications campaigns that shift long-term thinking and attitudes in support of his clients. A
former journalist who continues to publish columns on public relations, Michael’s experience provides him with
an understanding of how best to work with the media. He holds a bachelor’s degree in journalism from California
Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo and has served on a variety of client, community and industry
boards. He is regularly invited to speak nationally on the subjects of media advocacy, social marketing and public
Some of his successes include:
Rallying editorial support to pressure legislators to address the nation’s rising obesity epidemic
Initiating and executing a statewide multi-media campaign to help Californians respond to address the
crippling issues surrounding long-term care
Mobilizing industry-wide and media support for passage of a referendum funding ongoing wine industry
Building and implementing a training program to help nearly 100 UC Cooperative Extension officers
successfully frame and communicate their successes
Generating national media attention to the health benefits of canned tomato products on behalf of the
California Tomato Growers Association
Richard Molinar has been with UCCE for 25 years. Prior to his work at UC he spent six years teaching
agricultural courses in a community college and 11 years in private industry with Leffingwell Chemical
Company, Abate-A-Weed Inc. and Waterman-Loomis Company. Richard was also a Peace Corps volunteer for
two years in Honduras, Central America.
Doug Parker became the Inaugural Director of the California Water Resources Research Institute on October 3,
2011. He also currently serves on the Executive Committee of the USDA/NIFA National Water Program’s
Committee for Shared Leadership. Dr. Parker’s research and extension programs have focused on the economic
impacts of agricultural and environmental policies. For the past 14years Dr. Parker has been working at the
University of Maryland on water issues related to the Chesapeake Bay. Prior to that, he worked on California
water issues as an Extension Economist at UC Berkeley.
Karen Ross was appointed Secretary of the California Department of Food and Agriculture on January 12, 2011
by Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. Secretary Ross has deep leadership experience in agricultural issues
nationally, internationally, and here in California. Prior to joining CDFA, Secretary Ross was chief of staff for
U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, a position she accepted in 2009. Before her time at the United States
Department of Agriculture, Secretary Ross served more than thirteen years as President of the California
Association of Winegrape Growers (CAWG), based in Sacramento. During that same period she served as the
Executive Director of Winegrape Growers of America, a coalition of state winegrower organizations, and as
Executive Director of the California Wine Grape Growers Foundation, which sponsors scholarships for the
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children of vineyard employees. Among Secretary Ross’ many achievements at CAWG was the creation of the
nationally-recognized Sustainable Winegrowing Program, which assists wine grape growers in maintaining the
long-term viability of agricultural lands and encourages them to provide leadership in protecting the environment,
conserving natural resources, and enhancing their local communities.
Larry Salinas: In the fall of 2010, Larry Salinas was named Associate Director of Institutional Relations &
Advocacy for the UC Office of the President/State Governmental Relations in Sacramento. Larry coordinates all
internal and external advocacy efforts and serves as a liaison between the Office of the President, UC’s ten
campuses, alumni affairs, academic senate and Board of Regents.
Prior to his current position Larry was selected in the fall of 2000 to be the founding director of governmental
relations for the development of the university of California’s tenth campus, UC Merced. Larry served the
campus for ten years and concluded his service in the position of assistant vice chancellor of governmental
relations. UC Merced is the first comprehensive research university to be built in the 21st century. It welcomed its
first class on September 6, 2005. Mr. Salinas served as the principal governmental liaison and advisor between the
University and policy makers at the local, state and federal levels. He was responsible for a territory spanning
California’s Central Valley from Stockton to Bakersfield.
In college, Larry majored in political science and minored in public administration. He received a bachelor of
science degree in political science in 1985 from California State University, Fresno. Larry has over 30 years of
political and public affairs experience, and has served as an advisor to many candidates and elected officials at the
local, state and national levels. He is a native of Austin, Texas, and is a 36-year resident of the central valley,
currently residing in Sacramento, California.
Kurt Schwabe is an Associate Professor of Environmental Economics and Policy at the University of California,
Riverside. He is also a Research Associate for the Australian Center for Biosecurity and Environmental
Economics. Dr. Schwabe’s research programs have focused on the economic impacts of agricultural and
environmental policies. He received his B.A. in Mathematics and Economics from Macalester College, his M.A.
in Economics from Duke University, and his Ph.D. in Economics from North Carolina State University. His
awards include the Kenneth R. Keller Award for Excellence in Graduate Research (North Carolina State
University), Best Teaching Practices Recipient (Ohio University), Outstanding Journal Article (Journal of
Agricultural and Resource Economics), and a Flagship Fellowship (Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial
Daniel Sumner is the Director of the University of California Agricultural Issues Center, the Frank H. Buck, Jr.,
Professor in the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, and the Academic Director of the
Agribusiness Executive Seminar University of California, Davis where he engages in teaching, research, and
outreach on agricultural economics and policy. He was previously Senior Economist at the President's Council of
Economic Advisers and then Assistant Secretary for Economics at the United States Department of Agriculture,
where he supervised the Department’s economic, statistical and outlook analysis and provided policy advice to
the Secretary and other officials regarding trade negotiations, the Farm Bill and other issues.
Sumner is the author of scores of professional articles in such diverse journals as the Review of Economics and
Statistics, the Journal of Political Economy, the American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Food Policy, Dairy
Science, California Agriculture, Poultry Science, and the Journal of Wine Economics and well as many chapters
and reports. He is the author, coauthor or editor of several books including Agricultural Trade Policy: Letting
Markets Work. Sumner was chair of the International Agricultural Trade Research Consortium and is a Fellow of
the American Agricultural Economics Association among other honors.
Sumner is a frequent speaker on agricultural economics and policy throughout world. He grew up on a farm in
Suisun Valley California, has a BS in Agricultural Management from California State Polytechnic University, an
MS from Michigan State University and a Ph.D. in Economics from the University of Chicago.
David Sunding is the Thomas J. Graff Professor in the College of Natural Resources at UC Berkeley, where he is
also the Co-Director of the Berkeley Water Center. His research concerns environmental and resource economics,
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regulation, technological change, applied econometrics, risk and public finance. Prof. Sunding teaches courses in
natural resource economics, water resources, and law and economics. Prof. Sunding earned his Ph.D. from UC
Berkeley in 1989. Prior to his current position, he served as a senior economist at President Clinton’s Council of
Economic Advisers. He has served on panels of the National Research Council and the USEPA Science Advisory
Board. He has advised federal and state government agencies on the development of policies and regulations in
the area of natural resources and the environment.
Tom Tomich joined the UC Davis faculty in January 2007. He is director of the UC ANR statewide Sustainable
Agriculture Research and Education Program (SAREP). He also is founding director of the Agricultural
Sustainability Institute; inaugural holder of the WK Kellogg Endowed Chair in Sustainable Food Systems; and
professor of community development, environmental science and policy at UC Davis. Tom was principal
economist for the World Agroforestry Centre from 1994-2006. Before that, he spent 10 years as a policy advisor
and institute associate with the Harvard Institute for International Development and also served as a lecturer in
economics and in public policy at Harvard University.
He has broad interests and experience in agriculture, including agroforestry and other farming systems; economic
development strategy and policy; hunger and food policy; and natural resource management (trees, forests, land,
water, air). He has worked in a dozen countries (Brazil, Cameroon, Egypt, the Gambia, Indonesia, Kenya,
Madagascar, Malawi, Peru, Tajikistan, Thailand, and the United States), including significant periods based in
Egypt, Indonesia, Kenya, and now back in his home state of California.
Tom was raised on a small family farm growing nearly 100 different varieties of tree fruit near Sacramento. He
received his bachelors in economics from the University of California at Davis and his PhD in Food Research
(agricultural economics) from Stanford University.
Dr. Alison Van Eenennaam is a Cooperative Extension Specialist in the field of Animal Genomics and
Biotechnology in the Department of Animal Science at University of California, Davis. She received a Bachelor
of Agricultural Science from the University of Melbourne in Australia, and both an MS in Animal Science, and a
PhD in Genetics from UC Davis. The mission of her extension program is “to provide research and education on
the use of animal genomics and biotechnology in livestock production systems.” Her outreach program focuses on
the development of science-based educational materials outlining the uses of animal genomics and
biotechnologies in livestock production systems, including the controversial biotechnologies of genetic
engineering and cloning.
Jeannette Warnert works in news and information outreach for ANR Communications Services and Information
Technology. Jeannette is the content coordinator for ANR’s public and staff websites, writes the ANR News Blog
and manages the UC Food Blog and Green Blog. She also provides communication support to the Kearney
Agricultural Research and Extension Center, where she is based.
Mariko Yamada represents California’s 8th Assembly District, which includes portions of Solano and Yolo
counties and the cities of Benicia, Davis, Dixon, Fairfield, Rio Vista, Suisun City, Vacaville, West Sacramento,
Winters and Woodland. Prior to becoming an Assemblymember, Mariko served for five years on the Yolo County
Board of Supervisors, representing a portion of the City of Davis and surrounding unincorporated county lands.
Assemblymember Yamada chairs the Assembly Aging and Long-Term Care Committee, a position that reflects
her professional background as a social worker and her longtime work advocating for seniors and persons with
disabilities. She is also a member of the Assembly Committees on Agriculture; Labor and Employment; Water,
Parks and Wildlife; and Veterans Affairs. In January 2011, Speaker John Perez named her Chair of the new
Assembly Select Committee on Sustainable and Organic Agriculture. She also serves as a member of the
Assembly Select Committees on Homelessness, Regional Approaches to Addressing the State’s Water Crisis,
State Hospital Safety, State School Financial Takeovers, and Workforce Development within the
Developmentally Disabled Community.
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As Chair of the 7-member Assembly Select Committee on Sustainable and Organic Agriculture,
Assemblymember Yamada is spear-heading the effort in the State Legislature to discuss the growing trend of
organic farming and how the state can encourage more sustainable farming practices.
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