AASIO awards are given annually to persons who have made outstanding contributions in any area of agronomy, crop science, natural resources, horticultural science, soil science, environmental science, or plant biology. To be eligible for these awards the person has to be a current member of AASIO.
Awards nomination for year 2023 will open in July.
2021 Award Winners
Outstanding Agricultural Scientist Award
Dr. Om Parkash Dhankher is a Professor at the Stockbridge School of Agriculture, University of Massachusetts Amherst. Om received his M.Sc. from Kurukshetra University, India, and his Ph.D. from Durham University, United Kingdom. He is an internationally recognized leader in the field of phytoremediation of arsenic-contaminated soils, glutathione homeostasis, developing climate-resilient crops, and environmentally safe nanomaterials for sustainable agriculture. He has published over 100 refereed papers, 3 edited books, and 6 international patents, and mentored numerous new generation scientists. He provides leadership at the international, national, and regional levels. He is active in the Crop Science Society of America, American Society of Agronomy, American Society of Plant Biologists, International Phytotechnology Society (IPS), etc. Om has been awarded many outstanding and notable awards including the Award of Excellence for outstanding Research, an elected vice president of the IPS, a Fellow of the American Society of Agronomy, a Fellow of the Indian Society of Plant Physiology, etc.
Early Carrer Agricultural Scientist Award
Dr. Sruthi Narayanan is an Assistant Professor of Crop Physiology in the Department of Plant and Environmental Sciences. Dr. Narayanan has been at the forefront of advancements in crop physiology with cutting-edge research on abiotic stress tolerance. Her research is geared toward identifying pathways and mechanisms for improving heat- and drought-tolerance of plants at the field and cellular scales. Her nationally recognized research program finds its roots in stakeholder needs as she undertakes basic and applied research funded by the USDA-NIFA, SARE, and commodity boards. She combines research and instruction to engage students and promote critical thinking. Her goal is to prepare the future generation of scientists who would carry the vision of sustainable cropping systems which provide food security for all. For her efforts she has received several acclaims – the CSSA Early Career award for her outstanding contributions to crop science and multiple teaching excellence awards are just some of them she received this year.
Outstanding Agricultural Postdoc Award
Dr. Prakash Kumar Jha is a post-doctoral fellow at Feed the Future Sustainable Intensification Innovation Lab, Kansas State University, USA. He has a Ph.D. in Agronomy from Michigan State University, USA. He did his master’s in environmental sciences from the Indian Agricultural Research Institute (IARI), New Delhi, and his bachelors in agricultural sciences from Banaras Hindu University, India. His research interest focuses on investigating the influence of agronomic management on crop growth and development. He seeks to understand complexities in agricultural systems, integrating crop simulation models, remote sensing, and climate forecast to formulate a decision support system for better management strategies of inputs in the crop production system. He has served as a board member as a graduate student representative for two years (2016-2018) in the tri-society and was part of the graduate leadership conference organizing team in 2017. He served as a board member of the Curriculum and Program Review Committee at Michigan State University. He is also an active member of the American and European Geophysical Union, the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, and the American Association for the Advancement of Science.
Outstanding Agricultural Ph.D. Student Award
Karansher Singh Sandhu completed his Bachelor’s in Agriculture with a major in Plant Breeding and Genetics from Punjab Agricultural University in 2017 and later moved to the United States to pursue Ph.D. at Washington State University. He recently finished his Ph.D. from Washington State University with Dr. Arron Carter (Winter wheat breeder). The title of his Dissertation was "Enhancing genetic gain in a wheat breeding program using genomics, phenomics, machine, and deep learning algorithms". Starting next month, he will be working as a Soybean Product Development Scientist with Bayer Crop Sciences. During his free time, He likes to play cricket and badminton, and watch thriller movies.
Outstanding Agricultural M.S. Student Award
Taqdeer Gill is an M.S. student in Agricultural Sciences under the supervision of Dr. Jason de Koff at Tennessee State University. Her research focuses on studying the effect of different rates of nitrogen fertilizer on various characteristics of winter canola and pollinators. Previously, she did B.S. in Agriculture from Punjab Agricultural University. While pursuing the master's program, she received a few awards notably the 2021 Future Leaders in Science Award and Gerald O. Mott Award from the American Society of Agronomy.