How Good Food Can Save Our Planet – Professor Molly Jahn

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Molly Jahn is the dean of the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Prior to this, she was a professor in the departments of Plant Breeding & Genetics and Plant Biology at Cornell University. She has worked extensively overseas to link crop breeding with improved human nutrition and human welfare.

Molly has served as the U.S. Commissioner for Sustainable Agriculture and Climate Change, USAID Scientific Liaison Officer and member of the board of The World Vegetable Centre, Director of the Public Seed Initiative and the Organic Seed Partnership, Member of the Editorial Board and Executive Committee of The Plant Cell and is currently a member of the National Academies of Science Board on Agriculture and Natural Resources.

Special Advisor to the Chancellor and Provost for Sustainability Sciences and Professor of Agronomy and Genetics, Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies, Center for Sustainability and the Global Environment, University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Professor Molly Jahn has had a distinguished research career in plant genetics, genomics and plant breeding of vegetable crops focusing on molecular genetics of disease resistance and quality traits. She has also worked extensively in developing countries to link crop breeding with improved human nutrition and welfare using innovative approaches to inter-sector partnerships, engagement with emerging institutions, and integrated projects focused on impact and technology transfer.

Dr. Jahn has numerous publications, lectureships, and awards for her research, teaching, service and extension. She has served on boards and advisory groups including The AVRDC World Vegetable Center and World Dairy Expo, and founded and directed the Public Seed Initiative and the Organic Seed Partnership. She was named an American Association for the Advancement of Science Fellow in 2006. In 2009-10, she was called to Washington to provide interim leadership as Deputy Under Secretary for Research, Education and Economics at the U.S. Department of Agriculture.