Research Faculty & Staff

 
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The FARM is permanently staffed with research scientists specializing in tree-fruit horticulture, plant pathology, and entomology. Each scientist is a member of their respective department at the New York State Agricultural Experiment Station in Geneva, NY, which is part of Cornell University.            

 

Peter J. Jentsch

Station Director                                                                                              
Senior Extension Associate
Department of Entomology
E-Mail: pjj5@cornell.edu;
Ph.  (W) 845.691.7151 (Cell) 845.417.7465
Jentsch Lab WebSite

Research and extension efforts on pome fruit, small fruit, grape and onion has been focused on the efficacy of newly developed pest management tools for invasive insects and native insect pest complex. Employing them in a cost-effective, environmentally sound approach provides fruit growers with the knowledge to improve insect pest management strategies. Read more about pest management at the Jentsch Lab Blog Site.   


Dr. Srdjan Acimovic

Extension Associate
Department of Plant Pathology and Plant-Microbe Biology Research
E-Mail: acimovic@cornell.edu; 
Ph.  (W) 845.691.7231
Acimovic Lab Blog Site

Dr. Srdjan Acimovic is a tree fruit plant pathologist at FARM. Srdjan accepted the position replacing Dr. Dave Rosenberger, who retired in February 2014. Srdjan recently completed his PhD program at Michigan State University Department of Plant, Soil, and Microbial Sciences.


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Dana Acimovic

Research Support Specialist
Department of Entomology
E-Mail: dda42@cornell.edu

HVRL Horticulture Blog Site

Working in the Entomology Department, Dana has a Masters of Science degree in Horticulture from Michigan State. Dana’s research and extension concentration is on innovative grape, apple, and stone fruit production in Eastern New York.  Currently she is working with invasive species colony development, biological control studies and vineyard development of clone / root stock combinations of Cabernet Franc and Pinot Noir.

Employed at the FARM since April, 2016       


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David A. Rosenberger

Professor Emeritus of Plant Pathology
Hudson Valley Laboratory
E-Mail:  dar22@cornell.edu
Rosenberger WebSite.

As the Plant Pathologist at Cornell University’s Farmer's Alliance for Research & Management in Highland, NY, Dr. Rosenberger’s research program focused on finding immediate solutions to disease problems on tree fruits. Field tests were conducted each year to evaluate new fungicides and management strategies for apple diseases. Fungicides were evaluated for effectiveness against apple scab, powdery mildew, rust diseases, sooty blotch, flyspeck, black rot, and bitter rot. Research reports and outreach can be found on Rosenberger Blog Site.

 

 

Facilities & Staffing

 
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    Photo of FARM Faculty/Staff in 1998

Photo of FARM Faculty/Staff in 1998

FARM is permanently staffed with research scientists specializing in tree-fruit horticulture, plant pathology, and entomology. Each scientist is a member of their respective department at the New York State Agricultural Experiment Station in Geneva, NY, which is part of Cornell University. In addition to the three scientists, full-time employees at the lab include the support staff listed below.


Administrative Assistant. Erica Kane

EDUCATION & BACKGROUND:

A Hudson Valley native, Erica grew up surrounded by the orchards and crops of the area and has been a U-Pick regular since she helped her grandmother gather peaches and apples for pies as a child. Erica completed her MS in Public Policy and Management at Carnegie Mellon University in 2014 and comes from a background of working with nonprofits and in the state legislature, including on agricultural policy


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Farm Manager / Facilities Coordinator. Albert Woelfersheim

EDUCATION & BACKGROUND:

1992 – 1998 Master of Arts, in Mathematics – S.U.N.Y. at New Paltz

1989 – 1992 Bachelor of Arts, in Mathematics- – S.U.N.Y. at New Paltz

1986 – 1989 Associate in Science – Ulster County Community College

Employed at FARM since 1991 as Plant Pathology Technical Staff. Albert has developed technical expertise in electrical and plumbing, irrigation and planting systems, as well as Information Technologies.


Entomology Technical Staff. Chris Leffelman

Field & Laboratory Technician

EDUCATION & BACKGROUND:

Received a Bachelor of Arts degree in Plant Biology and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Anthropology with a minor in German Language and Culture from Southern Illinois University in Carbondale. Chris was previously employed with DuPont plant breeding facilities testing and developing disease-resistant traits in Ag. systems.


Plant Pathology Technical Staff: Zaklina Pavlovic

Visiting Scholar

EDUCATION & BACKGROUND:

Zaklina has a Masters of Science degree in Phytopatholgy from University of Belgrade. Currently her research focuses on detection, identification and characterization of plant pathogenic bacteria and fungi of different plants. Zaklina has been employed at the HVRL since June 2017.


Plant Pathology Technical Staff: Katarina Gasic

Visiting Scholar

EDUCATION & BACKGROUND:

Katarina completed her PhD at the University of Belgrade, Faculty of Agriculture, in 2011 and is now a senior research fellow at the Institute for Plant Protection and Environment in Belgrade, Serbia. Her research is focused on diagnosis of bacterial disease of vegetable crops, pome and stone fruits, nuts and grapevine; identification and characterization of plant pathogenic bacteria; and study of bacteriophages as biological agents for bacterial disease control. Katarina is a visiting scholar at HVRL for the autumn of 2017.


Plant Pathology Technical Staff: Ricardo Delgado Santander

Post-Doc Researcher

EDUCATION & BACKGROUND:

Ricardo completed a doctorate in Biomedicine and Biotechnology at the Universitat de València, Spain. Most of his research has focused in the characterization of unknown aspects of the life cycle of the fire blight pathogen Erwinia amylovora, including environmental stress responses, survival in insects and infection of host plants through the roots. He has been employed at the HVRL since October 2017


Entomology Technical Staff: Lucas Canino

Field & Laboratory Technician

EDUCATION & BACKGROUND:

Lucas is a 2017 graduate of SUNY Potsdam with a BA in Biology and a minor in Wilderness Education. He plans on finish his BS in the spring of 2018. Lucas joined HVRL in May 2017.


Entomology Technical Staff: Lydia Brown

Field & Laboratory Technician

EDUCATION & BACKGROUND:

Lydia earned an MS in Entomology from the University of Arizona and a BS in Horticulture from Oregon State University. Lydia worked for University of Arizona Cooperative Extension for 7 years in agronomic crops integrated pest management (IPM). She moved to the Hudson Valley in 2016 and joined HVRL in 2017.