The Paul C. Berger Professorship in the Department of Crop and Soil Science

In 1997, Paul C. Berger, a 1950 OSU graduate in animal science, established the Paul C. Berger Professorship in the Department of Crop and Soil Science. Mr. Berger grew up on his family's grass seed farm on Highway 34, not far from Corvallis. After receiving his master's degree from OSU in 1951, he spent several years on the faculty in the Department of Animal Sciences. He then began a long, successful career with Eli Lilly and Company.

Mr. Berger has been a long-standing supporter of OSU, and in 1989 increased his commitment to the University by creating an endowment for the College of Agricultural Sciences' Art About Agriculture program. Later, he added to this endowment and reallocated it to create the Berger Student-Industry Partnership, which allowed students to participate in agricultural industry internships.

Mr. Berger became one of the first Jackman Fellows, a recognized and honored supporter of the E. R. Jackman Foundation, the fund-raising organization associated with the College of Agricultural Sciences. He spent two years as vice president of the E. R. Jackman Foundation, and later became its president.

The Berger Professorship provides support for a faculty member whose research and education program is in the area of plant breeding, with emphasis on forage, grass seed production, or new crop development. The holder of the professorship works closely with students as well as Oregon seed growers and seed industry associations.

 

Jennifer G. Kling

Funds from the Berger Professorship are being used to support the meadowfoam breeding work of Professor Jennifer Kling. Jennifer Kling joined the OSU faculty in 2001 and assumed co-leadership of OSU’s meadowfoam breeding program in 2005. Steven Knapp, former OSU Oilseed Breeder and previous holder of the Berger Professorship, is also involved with this effort. Meadowfoam has been domesticated and developed as a new oilseed crop by OSU scientists over the past 40 years.

Professor Kling received her Ph.D. in Genetics from North Carolina State University and worked for more than 12 years as a maize breeder with the International Institute of Tropical Agriculture in Nigeria. She is internationally recognized for her work with genotype by environment interactions in plant breeding and for her efforts in international education through both traditional and distance education methods. Professor Kling is working to develop new meadowfoam cultivars with superior agronomic performance and unique quality characteristics.

 

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