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Department of Food Science and Technology


Dr. Kathryn J. Boor has been selected 2020 Harris Award recipient.

July 20, 2020

Congratulations to Dr. Kathryn J. Boor on being selected as the 2020 Harris Award recipient. Plans are underway for Dr. Boor to visit Ohio State to present a lecture to the campus community and to engage with the department's faculty and students during Spring Semester 2021.

     Kathryn J. Boor is the Ronald P. Lynch Dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences (CALS) at Cornell University.  As Cornell CALS’ chief academic and administrative officer, Dr. Boor is responsible for developing and implementing the strategic direction of the college, which has 350 faculty, 3,600 undergraduate students and >1,000 graduate students. She shares responsibility for leading Cornell Cooperative Extension throughout New York State with the Dean of Cornell's College of Human Ecology.
     Since Dr. Boor’s appointment as dean in 2010, the college has experienced record growth in external research dollars garnered by the faculty as well as in numbers of undergraduate applications.  In 2014, she drove creation of the School of Integrative Plant Science within CALS; this school is now among the most successful units at Cornell in terms of attracting external research dollars.  Dr. Boor has prioritized and invested in transforming curricula across the college with active learning approaches.  She has driven recognition of and investment in Digital Agriculture as an important trans-Cornell University research, teaching and outreach priority.
     Dr. Boor’s research focuses on identifying biological factors that affect transmission of bacteria in food systems, from farm to table.  She established the Food Safety Laboratory at Cornell University; her group has published more than 175 peer-reviewed manuscripts.  Among other discoveries, her team identified seminal evidence linking bacterial environmental stress response with virulence gene expression in the foodborne pathogen, Listeria monocytogenes.
     Dr. Boor earned a BS in Food Science from Cornell University, an MS in Food Science from the University of Wisconsin and a PhD in Microbiology from the University of California, Davis.  She joined the Cornell Food Science department as assistant professor in 1994, became its first tenured female faculty member in 2000 and led as department chair from 2007-2010.
     Dr. Boor serves on the Board of Directors for Seneca Foods Corporation, the United States-Israel Binational Agricultural Research and Development (BARD) Fund, the Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research (FFAR); the International Life Sciences Institute (ILSI) and the Boyce Thompson Institute.  She serves on the Science Board for the US Food and Drug Administration and on the New York State Southern Tier Regional Economic Development Council, and the New York State Council on Hunger and Food Policy.
     Dr. Boor is a Fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology, the International Academy of Food Science and Technology, the Institute of Food Technologists, the American Association for the Advancement of Science, and the American Dairy Science Association.  She received an honorary doctorate from Harper Adams University in the United Kingdom in 2016 and was named a 2018 Woman of Distinction by the New York State Senate. 

About the award
     This award is given annually to recognize excellence in and contributions to the discipline of food science. The selection committee seeks to recognize the accomplishments of an outstanding individual who made substantial contributions to the advancement of food science or technology. 
     The purpose of the award is to celebrate excellence in food science, food technology or related disciplines. The award consists of a $3,000 honorarium plus all travel expenses to interact with the faculty, staff and students of Ohio State. The annual Harris Award Celebration will highlight an address by the winner on the Columbus campus at a time most convenient for the awardee. Click here to learn about past recipients.