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LAURELS: Powell Honored for Senate Leadership

By Dateline Staff on July 7, 2020 in University


  • Robert Powell, Distinguished Professor, Department of Chemical Engineering and Department of Food Science and Technology
  • Manuela Martins-Green, Ph.D. '87, professor and chair, Department of Molecular, Cell and Systems Biology, UC Riverside
  • James Murray, professor and chair, Department of Animal Science
  • Adele Igel, assistant professor, Department of Land, Air and Water Resources
  • George Barnett, Distinguished Professor emeritus, Department of Communication
  • Emily Galindo, interim vice chancellor, Student Affairs
  • Barbara Schneeman, professor emerita, Department of Nutrition, and former dean, College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences

Robert Powell is being honored for distinguished leadership in the  Academic Senate, as the recipient of one of two Oliver Johnson Awards the systemwide senate is presenting this year.

Bob Powell mugshot

Powell, a Distinguished Professor with appointments in the Department of Chemical Engineering and the Department of Food Science and Technology, is a former chair of the Davis Division of the Academic Senate and of the UC Academic Senate.

He presided as divisional chair from 2008 to 2011, a period of administrative transition with the appointments of a new chancellor, and provost and executive vice chancellor. He progressed to chair of the systemwide Academic Senate (2012-13), and, during that time, as the faculty representative to the Board of Regents, assisted in recruiting a new UC president and helped create UC’s Innovation Learning Technology Initiative.

In a post announcing his selection for the Oliver Johnson Award, the Davis Division noted: “With his positive and friendly attitude, backed by deep knowledge of and commitment to UC, Powell has built and maintained bridges between faculty, administration and even government representatives.

“Professor Powell is a true asset to the UC system. The Davis Division of the Academic Senate commends him for this well-deserved honor.”

The Oliver Johnson Award, named after the late senate activist and UC Riverside professor, is given biennially — and often there are two recipients. The other award this year will go to Manuela Martins-Green, chair of the Department of Molecular, Cell and Systems Biology at UC Riverside. She earned her Ph.D. at UC Davis, in zoology. She met her future husband at UC Davis: Harry Green, a member of the geology faculty from 1970 to 1992. He then joined the UC Riverside faculty, and stayed there until his retirement. He died in 2017.

The Oliver Johnson Award presentation is scheduled for July 22 during a “virtual dinner” at the conclusion of a  meeting of the Academic Council, the senate’s executive committee.

James Murray mugshot

James Murray, professor and chair of the Department of Animal Science, has been named to a national task force that will map out recommendations for regulating gene editing in animal agriculture.

Led by the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities and the Association of American Veterinary Medical Colleges, the Task Force on Gene Editing in Animal Agriculture comprises 11 scientists and industry leaders who will look at appropriate safeguards and procedures for this emerging genomic technology.

“Gene editing has the potential to dramatically boost food security globally, improve animal welfare and improve efficiency of animal agriculture,” Murray said. “I’m honored to be part of a group that will examine and hopefully improve our regulatory process.”

The task force will recommend a path for government to take to regulate the field in a way that protects all involved while allowing the science to flourish. Currently, the Food and Drug Administration regulates genetic work on food animals as an “animal drug” and the USDA regulates these technologies with crops.

— Amy Quinton, News and Media Relations

Adele Igel mugshot

The Office of Naval Research has selected cloud physicist Adele Igel for its 2020 Young Investigator Program, or YIP, the federal government’s oldest grant program aimed at supporting early-career tenure-track faculty who show exceptional promise for doing creative research.

Igel is an assistant professor in the Department of Land, Air and Water Resources. She and her research group study properties of cloud droplets and ice crystals and how they impact weather and climate, including how much precipitation falls and where it falls.

The YIP award will allow Igel’s group to study marine fog off the coast of California and around the globe, in a project titled Microphysical Modeling and Detection of Marine Fog.

Igel is among 26 scientists who are sharing a total of $14 million in YIP funding to conduct challenging research that will benefit the Navy and Marine Corps.

George Barnett mugshot

George Barnett, Distinguished Professor emeritus in the Department of Communication, has been elected a fellow of the International Communication Association for his scholarly contributions to his field.

He specializes in social network analysis in studying a wide variety of global trends. His more than 200 scholarly publications include findings on the flows of commercial technology and health information, international students, international telephone calls, political blogs and internet traffic.

He also has helped develop mathematical modeling methods and other computational tools for analyzing the big data arising from online and telephone communication.

Barnett joined UC Davis in 2009 and served as department chair from then until 2015. He oversaw the launch of the department’s graduate program and helped shape the department’s focus on technology.

Man presents fdlower arrangement to woman.
Sheehan presents flowers to the Pathenon Award recipient.

A drive-by retirement celebration for Emily Galindo included a surprise announcement: that she had been chosen to receive a Parthenon Award, the highest honor given by the Association of College and University Housing Officers-International.

Galindo served the university for 36 years, most of that time in the Division of Student Affairs, first in Student Housing and Dining Services before concluding her career as interim vice chancellor.

On June 11, Student Affairs honored Galindo in a way that allowed for physical distancing — by organizing a parade of well-wishers who drove around the Mrak Hall circle to shout their congratulations to the retiring administrator. She had been tricked into coming to campus for lunch with her associate vice chancellors. Instead, after being surprised by family members, she was ushered into her place of honor, under a tent, to watch the Disney-themed parade pass by.

After the parade, Mike Sheehan, who succeeded Galindo as associate vice chancellor of Student Housing and Dining Services (with added responsibility for divisional operations), approached her with an arrangement of flowers and the surprise announcement. The Parthenon Award, Sheehan said, “is a great testament to the work you’ve done in your 36 years here. ... I’ve been with you the last 20 years, and just the impact you’ve had on me personally and our department and the campus — now with Student Affairs — it’s just phenomenal, so we really appreciate you.”

The Association of College and University Housing Officers-International, which uses the slogan, “Making Campus Home,” gave five Parthenon Awards this year. The association held its annual meeting later in June, with a remote program that included a video of Sheehan’s award presentation to Galindo.

“Becoming part of the Parthenon Society indicates that a member has left an indelible imprint on the campus housing profession and helped forge a foundation that will be built upon for generations to come,” association officials said.

The drive-by celebration included one other surprise for Galindo, a state Senate resolution commending her “outstanding and meritorious service” — authored by Bill Dodd and read by Sheri Atkinson, associate vice chancellor for student life, campus community and retention services.

Barbara Schneeman, professor emerita and a former dean of the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, recently received the Conrad A. Elvehjem Award for Public Service in Nutrition, given by the American Society for Nutrition and its foundation.

Barbara Schneeman mugshot

Schneeman held a joint appointment in the Department of Nutrition and the Department of Food Science and Technology from 1976 to 2007, and served as the CA&ES dean from 1993 to 1999. She took a leave of absence in 2004 upon her appointment as director of the Office of Nutrition, Labeling and Dietary Supplements in the Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition, part of the Food and Drug Administration; she served in this role for more than eight years (during which time she retired from the university).

Her public service continued over the last year as a member of the federal government’s 2020 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee, charged with reviewing the scientific evidence on specific topics and supporting questions on nutrition and health from birth into older adulthood.

Schneeman joined her UC Davis colleague Kay Dewey, also a professor emerita of nutrition, on the committee. were appointed to the panel in March 2019. See the results of the committee’s work here.

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About the author(s)

Dateline Staff Dave Jones, editor, can be reached at 530-752-6556 or Cody Kitaura, news and media relations specialist, can be reached at 530-752-1932 or