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Two leading scientists named as visiting professors

Posted 24 January 2017

I look forward to working more closely with Harper Adams to further develop courses to inspire the next generation of plant health professionals."

Michelle O'Malley

Michelle O'Malley

Harper Adams University has appointed two new visiting professors to engage with its research and teaching activities.

Professor Michelle O’Malley of the University of California, Santa Barbara, is a global expert in new technologies for the use of microbes with applicability to bioenergy and sustainability, as well as to drug development and detection.

Professor O’Malley works closely with Professor Mike Theodorou at Harper Adams on the discovery and use of enzymes from anaerobic fungi for sustainable energy production.

Last year she received a Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers from the then president, Barack Obama.

On joining Harper Adams, Professor O’Malley said: “I’m honoured to be appointed as a visiting professor at Harper Adams University. As Harper Adams is a leader for agriculture-related research in the UK, I look forward to exchanging ideas and further strengthening biotechnology research between UCSB and Harper Adams.”

Professor Nicola Spence is the Chief Plant Health Officer for the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (Defra). Her role involves advising ministers, industry and stakeholders about the risks posed by plant and bee pests and diseases, and ensuring that appropriate science, evidence and operational measures are in place to manage those risks and minimise their impact.

Professor Spence has been working closely with Harper Adams to help put in place the UK’s only course on plant biosecurity.

She said: “I’m honoured and delighted to accept the role of visiting professor at Harper Adams University.

“Harper Adams is a key partner in delivering skills and training in plant health and I look forward to working more closely with Harper Adams to further develop courses to inspire the next generation of plant health professionals.”

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