GRDC northern panellist Loretta Serafin has won the Australian Society of Agronomy Young Agronomist Award.GRAINS Research and Development Corporation (GRDC) northern panellist, Loretta Serafin, has been named joint winner of the Australian Society of Agronomy (ASA) Young Agronomist Award at the Australian Agronomy Conference this week.
Ms Serafin, NSW Department of Primary Industries (DPI) district agronomist and acting technical specialist – northern farming systems, based at Tamworth, NSW shares the honour with Canberra-based Dr James Hunt, CSIRO Plant Industry research scientist.
James Clark, GRDC northern panel chair says the award was well deserved and Ms Serafin is a valuable member of the northern panel.
“Loretta brings to her role on the panel a great depth of understanding of farming systems in the northern region,” Mr Clark said.
“She understands what research can deliver and the timeframes involved and has an outstanding ability to identify and hone a research question.
“She is a good lateral thinker who cares about agriculture. Her belief in agriculture is evident and she is devoted to its advancement.
“We are lucky to have her on the northern panel and on behalf of GRDC and the panel I congratulate Loretta on this award which recognises her current contribution to agriculture and the potential her career holds.”
Mr Clark said Ms Serafin was part of an excellent team based at NSW DPI’s Tamworth Agricultural Institute and led by Dr Guy McMullen.
Ms Serafin coordinates extension and technical training for agronomists and growers in NSW’s northern and central regions. She also provides specialist technical advice through researching innovative technological developments in northern farming systems.
She said she was delighted to receive the award and congratulated her co-winner, Dr Hunt.
“My job as a district agronomist, and serving on the GRDC northern panel, allows me to work closely with grower groups and research providers to ensure GRDC’s research investment is responding to targeted regional and national priorities,” Ms Serafin said.
“A big part of my role with NSW DPI is linking farmers, agribusiness professionals and researchers to foster better communication.”
The award is presented each year to an agronomist aged 35 years and under who has achieved excellence in research and/or the application of science on crops and/or pastures, including plant physiology, breeding, nutrition, pathology, entomology, soil science, weed science, economics and farming systems.
GRDC is a major sponsor of the agronomy conference, held at the University of New England (UNE) this week.
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