Jim McFerson, director of the WSU Tree Fruit Research and Extension Center in Wenatchee, was appointed a Scientific Member to the National Genetic Resources Advisory Council in December.
The nine-member group advises the U.S. Department of Agriculture on actions and policies for collection, maintenance, and utilization of genetic resources of agriculturally important organisms: plants, forest species, animals, aquatic species, insects, and microbes.
“Having worked so much of my career with plant genetic resources, this is both an honor and an exciting challenge,” said McFerson. “It is particularly gratifying that I can represent the incredible array of genetic resources that are so important to Washington state, from crop plants to livestock to forest to fish to fungi and even microorganisms.”
Since so many WSU faculty are involved in activities related to genetic resources, from breeding, to genetics, to genomics, McFerson will have the opportunity to understand more about their work and highlight their activities at the national and international level.
“I hope that I can also provide some insight on external funding and training opportunities for our faculty and students.”