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LAURELS: Athletics’ Video Director Wins National Award

By Dateline Staff on March 6, 2018 in University News

Quick Summary

  • Elizabeth Mitcham of the Horticulture Innovation Lab named as Foreign Policy Interrupted fellow
  • Engineering professor Jean VanderGheynst receives Clare Boothe Luce Scholarship to attend a HERS leadership institute
  • Mark W. Schwartz of environmental science and policy elected as fellow of the Ecological Society of America
  • Chris Hopwood named recipient of American Psychological Foundation award for personality psychology
  • Professor Emerita Linda Bisson tabbed as a “Top Leader in the Wine Industry,” as declared by Wine Business Monthly
  • American Veterinary Medical Association presents Lifetime Excellence in Research Award to Patricia Ann Conrad

The Collegiate Sports Video Association has named Tim Ornelas as the 2017-18 Football Championship Subdivision Video Coordinator of the Year.

Tim Ornelas mugshot

“I am extremely honored and humbled to receive this award, especially since the winner is nominated and selected by his or her peers,” said Ornelas, director of video services and technical operations for UC Davis Athletics. He’s held this position for two years, after doing similar work on a part-time basis and as a volunteer for three years.

“UC Davis is constantly pushing itself to evolve technologically and provide the highest-quality product and services to student-athletes and coaches. I am proud to play my role in this process.”

The Football Championship Subdivision comprises 124 programs, many of which have multiple employees assigned to video work. Ornelas, on the other hand, is a one-man department with a student staff, producing practice and game films, and highlight videos for social media.

He also has responsibilities in other sports, setting up video streams (including the first one ever from Schaal Aquatics Center) and producing film for coaches. He also works with radio and television broadcasters, and trouble-shoots scoreboard problems.

Elizabeth Mitcham mugshot

Foreign Policy Interrupted, an organization that aims to bring more women’s voices into foreign policy discussions, has selected UC Davis’ Elizabeth Mitcham as a winter 2018 fellow. Mitcham is a postharvest specialist in the Department of Plant Sciences, and the director of the Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Horticulture (better known as the Horticulture Innovation Lab) and

Fellows participate in six weeks of training and a media mentorship focused on developing print or on-camera appearances. 

As director of the Horticulture Innovation Lab, Mitcham oversees a global research network that advances fruit and vegetable innovations, empowering smallholder farmers to earn more income while better nourishing their communities. The program is funded by the U.S. Agency for International Development, as part of the U.S. government’s global hunger and food security initiative called Feed the Future.

Learn more about Foreign Policy Interrupted.

Jean VanderGheynst, a faculty member and administrator in the College of Engineering, has been awarded a Clare Boothe Luce Scholarship to attend a Higher Education Resource Services, or HERS, summer institute for leadership in higher education.

HERS has been offering such training since 1976 and providing 12 Luce scholarships a year since 2016 specifically for women in STEM leadership. VanderGheynst is a professor in the Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering, and serves as the executive associate dean for research and graduate studies. She served previously as the associate dean for undergraduate studies, 2009-13, and as interim dean in 2015.

She is scheduled to attend the HERS Institute and the HERS Luce Program for Women in STEM Leadership this summer at Bryn Mawr College.

Environmental science and policy professor Mark W. Schwartz is a new fellow of the Ecological Society of America. It elects its fellows in recognition of outstanding contributions to advancing or applying ecological knowledge in academics, government, nonprofit organizations and the broader society.

The society cited Schwartz for influential research on responses to climate change, biodiversity and ecosystem function, and translational ecology, as well as development of innovative ecology-in-practice graduate curricula. 

Chris Hopwood mugshot

Chris Hopwood, an associate professor of psychology working to develop better models for psychiatric diagnosis, has been selected to receive the American Psychological Foundation’s 2018 Theodore Millon Award in Personality Psychology.

The award honors an outstanding early or mid-career psychologist engaged in advancing the science of personality psychology. Hopwood will receive the $1,000 prize during the American Psychological Association’s annual conference, Aug. 9-12, in San Francisco.

Trained as a clinical psychologist, Hopwood joined UC Davis this year after 10 years on the faculty at Michigan State University. He directs the UC Davis Personality Assessment Lab, where he researches how personality relates to psychopathology, the genetic and environmental underpinnings of individual differences, and how personality plays out in relationships.

Read more in this story by Kathleen Holder, content strategist in the College of Letters and Science.

Not even retirement could keep Professor Linda Bisson from being a “Top Leader in the Wine Industry for 2017,” as declared by Wine Business Monthly in December.

Bisson retired in September after 32 years in the Department of Viticulture and Enology. Wine Business Monthly noted that she had taught a generation of winemakers around the world, researched fermentation and yeast, promoted extension and continuing education, and served the American Society for Enology and Viticulture, particularly as editor of its journal.

“Bisson’s research in yeast genetics is a scientific legacy that will not be surpassed easily,” Wine Business Monthly wrote.

​The American Veterinary Medical Association presented its 2017 Lifetime Excellence in Research Award to Distinguished Professor Patricia Ann Conrad in recognition of her outstanding achievements in veterinary parasitology and her contributions to global health.​

The parasitologist is a member of the faculty of the Department of Pathology, Microbiology and Immunology and also serves as associate dean for global programs in the School of Veterinary Medicine. She is a co-director of the UC Global Health Institute.

“Dr. Conrad has been responsible for a number of remarkable contributions to the fields of protozoology and parasitology," said Tom Meyer, president of the American Veterinary Medical Association. “Her cutting-edge research and holistic approach has not only impacted veterinary medicine, but has advanced the One Health community in addressing human, animal and environmental health problems.”

Dateline UC Davis welcomes news of faculty and staff awards, for publication in Laurels. Send information to

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About the author(s)

Dateline Staff Dave Jones, editor, can be reached at 530-752-6556 or Content provider Cody Kitaura can be reached at 530-752-1932 or