Mizzou and Danforth Center Leaders to be Featured at the Conversations Program

Let’s Talk About… People, Plants and Partnerships: The Mizzou Connection

St. Louis, MO, August 19, 2016 --(PR.com)-- The Donald Danforth Plant Science Center’s Conversations Series will be held on Thursday, August 25, 2016, at the Danforth Center, 975 N. Warson Road. A reception will begin the night at 5:15 p.m. and the program will immediately follow at 6:00 p.m. Henry "Hank" C. Foley, Ph.D., interim chancellor of the University of Missouri (MU) and Blake Meyers, Ph.D., principle investigator, Danforth Center and professor, Division of Plant Sciences, University of Missouri will discuss the growing agtech industry and the strong tradition of plant science research in Missouri. The program will be moderated by Dudley McCarter, former president of the Mizzou Alumni Association. Reservations are required but complimentary; seating is limited. To reserve your seat call (314) 587-1070 or register on-line at www.danforthcenter.org/events.

“Partnering with the University of Missouri is accelerating research and education at both institutions, and providing new capabilities to translate great scientific discoveries into meaningful impact that improves people’s lives,” said James Carrington, Ph.D., president of the Danforth Center.

The evening will highlight the partnership designed to ramp up collaborative efforts between the two institutions. In 2014, the Center and MU agreed to hire four accomplished research scientists with specialties in plant and crop sciences who can complement the current research activity and fill gaps at both the Danforth Center and MU.

“The partnership between MU and the Danforth Center that led to my hiring represents a unique opportunity to build on a strong history of plant science in the region,” said Meyers. “It is all about building on synergies and complementary expertise, interests and research infrastructure, tying together students, faculty, and scientists from Columbia to St. Louis. The outcome, we believe, will yield continued intellectual, scientific and economic growth for Missouri, enhanced as more joint hires between the partner institutions are made. I'm thrilled to be the first of these hires and excited for the opportunities that this unique position offers me and my lab members.”

Two scientists will be housed at the Danforth Center and two will be housed at MU. They will hold joint appointments at both institutions as well as tenure at MU.

The 2016 Conversations Series is sponsored by St. Louis Public Radio and HEC-TV. To view previous Conversations programs visit HEC-TV.org. Follow the discussion on Twitter at #ConvoSTL.

About the Panelist
Henry "Hank" C. Foley, Ph.D., is the interim chancellor of the University of Missouri (MU), where he oversees a $2.1 billion enterprise and directs MU's research mission. Dr. Foley is a leading authority on the synthesis, characterization and application of nanoporous carbons whose numerous achievements include being named a Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors and receiving the Presidential Young Investigator Award from the National Science Foundation.

Blake Meyers, Ph.D., joined the Center in early 2016 from the University of Delaware as the first of four hires in a joint faculty initiative with the University of Missouri. Dr. Meyers' research focuses on genome-scale studies of RNA and components of RNA silencing pathways, with a recent emphasis on plant reproductive biology and the evolution of plant small RNAs.

About The Donald Danforth Plant Science Center
Founded in 1998, the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center is a not-for-profit research institute with a mission to improve the human condition through plant science. Research, education and outreach aim to have impact at the nexus of food security and the environment, and position the St. Louis region as a world center for plant science. The Center’s work is funded through competitive grants from many sources, including the National Institutes of Health, U.S. Department of Energy, National Science Foundation, and the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

To keep up to date with Danforth Center’s current operations and areas of research, please visit, www.danforthcenter.org, featuring information on Center scientists, news, and the “Roots & Shoots” blog. Follow us on Twitter at @DanforthCenter.
Donald Danforth Plant Science Center
Melanie Bernds
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