Distinguished Alumni Award

The Distinguished Alumni Award for the Department of Horticultural Science recognizes distinguished achievement in the many and varied forms. Nominees are chosen based on a variety of factors; for some alumni, the award may recognize distinguished achievements in research and scholarship, whether in academic of non-academic settings. For other alumni, the award may recognize distinguished achievements and/or leadership in their chosen professions, as well as notable service in the area of horticultural science. We hope to capture the diversity of distinguished achievements by those educated in our department with this award.


  1. Candidates must have received at least one of the following degrees from the Department of Horticultural Science:

    • Baccalaureate degree with a major in Horticulture, Environmental Horticulture, Animal & Plant Systems, Science in Agriculture, Food Systems, or Plant Science.
    • Master of Agriculture
    • Master of Professional Studies in Horticulture
    • Graduate degree advised by a faculty member of Horticultural Science
    • Current staff or faculty in the Department of Horticultural Science, or sitting Regents, are not eligible for this award.
  2. Record of public speaking on broader topics of interest to the horticultural community.

  3. Distinguished achievements in research and scholarship.

  4. Leadership in their chosen professions.

  5. Notable service in the area of horticultural science.

Award Criteria

Nominees must minimally meet the eligibility criteria. Anyone may nominate an individual for this award; individuals are welcome to self-nominate. Recipients of the award are recognized at the annual Kermit Olson Memorial Lecture.


Please use this form to submit a 2-3 page CV highlighting achievements in horticultural science as well as a letter outlining why this alumnus fulfills the criteria and intent of the award. Nominations are due by noon on September 1st 2020. Contact Kelsey Bogdanovich at [email protected] with any questions.

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Previous Recipients

  • 2017 Royal Heins, Professor Emeritus, Michigan State University
  • 2018 Eric Lee-Mäder, Pollinator Conservation Co-Director, The Xerces Society
  • 2019 Phil S. Allen, Professor, Brigham Young University
  • 2020 John M. Dole,  Associate Dean for Academic Programs, North Carolina State University