Cornell names Hanson, Gonsalves and Casella as the newest Liberty Hyde Bailey Professors

Cornell's College of Agriculture and Life Sciences has named George Casella, professor of biometrics, Dennis Gonsalves, professor of plant pathology; and Maureen Hanson, professor of biological sciences, as the newest Liberty Hyde Bailey Professors.

Liberty Hyde Bailey was among the first of the truly supreme professors at Cornell. Bailey had been recruited to teach here as a professor in 1888 and brought the study of horticulture to the forefront. Until his death in 1954, he disseminated innovative horticultural research information. The professorship was created in 1972 to provide recognition for distinguished faculty within the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences who have national and international reputations in agriculture and related sciences.

Maureen Hanson

With research focused on mitochondrial genes and an international reputation in the field of male sterility in plants, Maureen Hanson also teaches lecture and laboratory classes in organelle molecular biology and plant transformation. She is director of the Plant Sciences Center and coordinator of a federal interagency training grant in the molecular mechanisms of plant processes.

Hanson received her bachelor's degree in botany from Duke University and her doctorate in biology from Harvard University. She joined Cornell University's Section of Genetics and Development in 1985, after a position as assistant professor in biology at the University of Virginia from 1979-85. Before that, she held a National Institutes of Health Postdoctoral Fellowship at Harvard.

Hanson is on the board of trustees of the American Society of Plant Physiologists, and is on the Plant Genome Coordinating Committee of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, where she served as panel manager for the National Research Initiative Plant Genome Program. She is a fellow in the American Association for the Advancement of Science and has served on a number of editorial boards of professional journals.

George Casella

For both the American Statistical Association and the Institute of Mathematical Statistics, George Casella is among the youngest members ever elected as fellow in those organizations. Widely published in the field of statistics, he has just been elected editor of the prestigious Journal of the American Statistical Association.

Casella earned his bachelors' degree from Fordham University, and his masters' and doctoral degrees from Purdue University in the field of mathematics and statistics. Before becoming professor in the Cornell biometrics unit, he was associate professor from 1983-89, and assistant professor from 1981-83. While at Rutgers University, he served as assistant professor of statistics from 1977-81.

He wrote the books, Statistical Inference (Wadsworth/Brooks Cole, 1990) with R. L. Berger; and Variance Components (John Wiley and Sons, Inc., 1992) with Shayle. R. Searle and Charles. E. McCulloch and the forthcoming Theory of Point Estimation, with E.L. Lehmann. In addition to his teaching and consulting duties in the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, he is director of the doctoral program in environmental statistics.

Dennis Gonsalves

While serving New York's fruit growers with effective research on threatening viruses, Dennis Gonsalves developed innovative ways to improve fruits and vegetables by a variety of traditional and molecular techniques. He has been on the frontier of using "cross-protection" and genetically engineered plants as a way to control plant viruses domestically and globally.

Gonsalves received his undergraduate and master's degrees from the University of Hawaii. In 1972, he received his doctorate in plant pathology from the University of California Davis. Prior to Cornell, he served as assistant professor and then associate professor of plant pathology at the University of Florida. He came to Cornell in 1977 and was promoted to professor in 1986.

In 1991, Gonsalves was named a fellow of the American Phytopathological Society. That same year he was named Outstanding Alumnus for the University of Hawaii's College of Tropical Agriculture and Human Resources.

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