Amaya Atucha, Christelle Guedot and Heather White receive Toepfer Faculty Fellow Awards

Horticulture assistant professor Amaya Atucha, entomology assistant professor Christelle Guedot and dairy science assistant professor Heather White have been selected to receive Alfred Toepfer Faculty Fellow Awards.

Atucha’s research focuses on fruit crop physiology and production of deciduous fruit crops (cranberry, apple and grapes in particular). Her current research areas include cold hardiness of fruit crops, improving fruit quality of cold hardy wine grapes through cultural practices and differences in root growth rates of rootstocks as affected by soil borne pathogens. She is also a UW-Extension fruit crop specialist.

Guedot studies the natural chemicals that mediate interactions between organisms and how these chemical messages affect insect behaviors, with the ultimate goal to develop practical applications for semiochemicals for integration into pest management programs while sustaining and enhancing pollination services. Her research program focuses on developing and refining effective, economical and environmentally sound insect pest management (IPM) strategies; and on determining the importance of pollinators and developing strategies for conserving and enhancing pollination services for fruit crops in Wisconsin. She provides up-to-date, research-based information to Wisconsin fruit growers on effective and sustainable IPM practices and on pollination services.

White focuses on hepatic carbon flux during the coordinated responses to the transition to lactation, nutrition and stress in dairy cattle. Her goals are to improve the understanding of the regulation of glucose, energy and lipid metabolism to allow for improvement of feeding strategies, manipulation of metabolic capacity and efficiency and development of intervention and treatment strategies of metabolic disorders.

The one-year award is bestowed on pre-tenure faculty whose research benefits agricultural activities within the United States and whose areas of interest lie in the scientific fields of crop research, improvements in crop yield and quality, or animal sciences. The award can also go to faculty members whose agricultural research is considered biological or physical in nature.