International Women's Day 2022

March 08, 2022

On International Women's Day 2022, Rausser College of Natural Resources honors the women who lead their field and help make the world a better place. Below is a small sampling of recent stories covering the groundbreaking research and honors and awards of our faculty and alumnae.

More updates about the many accomplishments of women in Rausser College can be found on our news page and in our student spotlights.

Ana Paula Arruda headshot

Ana Paula Arruda

Ana Paula Arruda named Chan Zuckerberg Biohub investigator

Ana Paula Arruda, an assistant professor in the Nutritional Sciences and Toxicology Department, was selected as a 2022 university-nominated Chan-Zuckerberg Biohub (CZ Biohub) Investigator. Arruda is one of three UC Berkeley-nominated faculty selected for the position by CZ Biohub, a nonprofit medical research organization co-founded by Priscilla Chan and Mark Zuckerberg. 

The five-year, $1 million award from CZ Biohub will support Arruda’s work on understanding the relationship between organelle architecture and metabolic regulation, inter-organelle communication and metabolism, and calcium signaling at organelle contact sites. Her research has the potential to uncover new treatments for metabolic diseases like obesity, type 2 diabetes, and fatty liver disease.

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Photo of Ellen Bruno.

Ellen Bruno

Leaks an Untapped Opportunity for Water Savings

Before a drop of treated water in California ever reaches a consumer’s faucet, about 8% of it has already been wasted due to leaks in the delivery system. Nationally, the waste is even higher, at 17%. This represents an untapped opportunity for water savings, according to recommendations from Ellen Bruno, assistant professor of cooperative extension in agriculture and resource economics, and researchers at the UC Davis Center for Water-Energy Efficiency.

In the first large-scale assessment of utility-level water loss in the United States, the researchers found that leak reduction by utilities can be the most cost-effective tool in an urban water manager’s toolkit, provided utility-specific approaches are used. 

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Rosemary Gillespie

Rosemary Gillespie contributes to “Biodiversity at Risk” publication

Evolutionary ecologist Rosemary Gillespie, a professor in the Environmental Science, Policy, and Management department, contributed to the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine's  “Biodiversity at Risk” booklet.  Designed for policymakers and the public, the resource examines the causes of biodiversity loss and presents actions that can be taken at all levels to stop this decline.

During a public briefing webinar on the booklet earlier this year, Gillespie offered examples of successful biodiversity protection measures. “The important thing here is that we actually can do something,” says Gillespie. “We know that actions we have taken in the past have worked, sometimes spectacularly well.”

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Pamela Ronald. Photo by John Stumbos.

Alum Pamela Ronald awarded Wolf Prize in Agriculture

Pamela Ronald, PhD ‘90 Molecular and Physiological Plant Biology, has been awarded the 2022 Wolf Prize in Agriculture in recognition of her pioneering work on disease resistance and environmental stress tolerance in rice.

The Wolf Prize is an international award granted by the Wolf Foundation in six categories: agriculture, chemistry, mathematics, medicine, physics, and the arts. The prize in the agriculture category is often referred to as the equivalent of a Nobel Prize in agriculture.

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Jill Banfield

Jill Banfield. PHOTO: Elena Zhukova

Branching out: how Jill Banfield’s research reimagines our “tree of life”

In a recent profile in California Magazine, learn how Environmental Science, Policy, and Management Professor Jill Banfield's curiosity and quest for understanding vastly expand our knowledge of life on Earth.

Banfield is a pioneering researcher in the field of geomicrobiology and is at the forefront of groundbreaking CRISPR research. 

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