Director, Cornell Alliance for Science
Sarah received her PhD in the field of plant biology from Cornell University in 2009, for which she conducted an interdisciplinary study combining work in plant molecular biology with science communication. Her dissertation focused on the controversy over genetically engineered papaya in developing countries with a specific focus on Thailand. She came to Cornell after completing a BA in biology at Reed College. Lured by great weather, plenty of water and an unbeatable intellectual environment, she remained at Cornell University after completing her PhD to help lead a global project to help protect the world’s wheat from wheat stem rust.
Sarah now serves as the PI and Director for the Cornell Alliance for Science—a global communications effort that promotes evidence-based decision-making in agriculture. In addition, she is a research professor in the Department of Global Development and holds an adjunct appointment in the Section of Plant Breeding & Genetics in the School of Integrative Plant Science at Cornell, teaching courses on agricultural biotechnology at the graduate and undergraduate level. Sarah was instrumental in launching the CALS initiative, AWARE (Advancing Women in Agriculture through Research and Education) which promotes women in agriculture. Sarah grew up in a small agricultural village in northwest Illinois. She enjoys life in the Finger Lakes with her husband and three young children.