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Plant Pathologists

Dr. Cheryl Blomquist, Senior Environmental Scientist, Supervisor (Cheryl's webpage)

Education: B.S., 1981, Washington State University, Pullman; Ph.D., 2000, University of California, Davis.

Experience: Visiting Posdoctoral Scientist, Department of Plant Pathology, University of California, Davis, 2000-2001; Associate Plant Pathologist (Diagnostician), California Department of Food and Agriculture, 2001-2004; Senior Plant Pathologist (Diagnostician), California Department of Food and Agriculture, 2004-2011; Senior Plant Pathologist (Supervisor), California Department of Food and Agriculture, 2011-2015; Senior Environmental Scientist (Supervisor), California Department of Food and Agriculture, 2015-present.

Area of Specialty/Responsibility: Sudden Oak Death nursery and forestry testing, Phytophthoras, general Mycology.

Lucita Kumagai, Senior Plant Pathologist (Luci's webpage)

Education:B.S., 1986, California State University, Sacramento; M.S, 1992, California State University, Sacramento

Experience: Adjunct Professor, CSU Sacramento, Biology, 1988-1989; Part-time Faculty, San Joaquin Delta College, Stockton, Core Biology, 1990; Part-time Faculty, Sacramento City College, Sacramento, Microbiology, 1995; Agricultural Biological Technician, California Department of Food and Agriculture, 1987-1997; Associate Plant Pathologist, California Department of Food and Agriculture, 1997-2000; Consultant, Empire Farms Research Lab, Davis, CA, 2000-2001; Seed Health Testing Specialist, Agri-Analysis LLC, Davis, CA, 2007-2009; Senior Agricultural Biological Technician, California Department of Food and Agriculture, 2009-2010; Associate Plant Pathologist, California Department of Food and Agriculture, 2010-2012; Senior Plant Pathologist, California Department of Food and Agriculture, 2012-present

Area of Specialty/Responsibility:Huanglongbing (HLB) testing; Plant pathogenic bacteriology

Dr. Suzanne Rooney Latham, Senior Plant Pathologist (Suzanne's webpage)

Education: A. S. Merced College, 1996; B.S., 1999. University of California, Davis; M.S, 2002, University of California, Davis; Ph.D. 2005, University of California, Davis..

Experience: Graduate Research Assistant, Plant Pathology, University of California, Davis. 1999-2005; Teaching Assistant, University of California, Davis, 2000, 2003; Post-Doctoral Scholar, Plant Pathology, University of California, Davis, 2005-2006; Adjunct Professor, Solano Community College, Biology, 2006-present; Associate Plant Pathologist, California Department of Food and Agriculture, 2006-2009; Senior Plant Pathologist, California Department of Food and Agriculture, 2009-present.

Area of Specialty/Responsibility:Diagnose plant disease specimens caused by fungi; Head scientist of the Phytophthora ramorum (causal agent of sudden oak death) lab program for CDFA; Conduct research on newly emerging plant diseases in California; co-instructor of plant disease diagnostic seminar at UC Davis.

Dr. Tongyan Tian, Senior Plant Pathologist (Tongyan's webpage)

Education: B.S., 1982, Shenyang Agricultural College;Ph.D., 1991, University of California, Davis.

Experience: Senior Plant Pathologist (Diagnostician), CDFA-PPDB, 2001-present; Staff Research Asssociate, Dept. of Plant Pathology, UC Davis, 1997-2001; Visiting Postdoctoral Researcher, Dept. of Plant Pathology, UC Davis, 1992-1996; Postdoctoral Researcher, Dept. of Entomology, UC Davis, 1992 Feb.-1992 Aug.

Area of Specialty/Responsibility: Responsible for plant virus diagnostics.

Dr. Yunping Zhang, Senior Plant Pathologist (Yunping's webpage)

Education: B.S., 1985, Plant Protection, Northwest Agriculture University, Yangling, China; Ph.D., 1996, Plant Pathology, University of California, Davis.

Experience: Research Assistant, Pomology Research Institute, Shaanxi Province, China, 1985 – 1988; Visiting Scholar, Washington State University, Irrigated Agriculture Research and Extension Center, Prosser, Washington, 1988 – 1990; Graduate Study, University of California Davis, 1990 – 1296; Visiting post doctoral researcher, Department of Plant Pathology, UC Davis, 1997-1999;  Staff Research Associate, Department of Plant Pathology, UC Davis, 1999-2001;  Associate Plant Pathologist, California Department of Food and Agriculture, 2001-2006; Senior Plant Pathologist, Department of Food and Agriculture, 2006-present.

Area of Specialty/Responsibility: Nursery diagnostics laboratory; Seed health testing; Perennial fruit tree and grapevine viral diseases.

Supervisors

Dr. Cheryl Blomquist, Senior Environmental Scientist, Supervisor (Cheryl's webpage)

Education: B.S., 1981, Washington State University, Pullman; Ph.D., 2000, University of California, Davis.

Experience: Visiting Posdoctoral Scientist, Department of Plant Pathology, University of California, Davis, 2000-2001; Associate Plant Pathologist (Diagnostician), California Department of Food and Agriculture, 2001-2004; Senior Plant Pathologist (Diagnostician), California Department of Food and Agriculture, 2004-2011; Senior Plant Pathologist (Supervisor), California Department of Food and Agriculture, 2011-2015; Senior Environmental Scientist (Supervisor), California Department of Food and Agriculture, 2015-present.

Area of Specialty/Responsibility: Sudden Oak Death nursery and forestry testing, Phytophthoras, general Mycology.

Deborah Meyer, Environmental Program Manager I (Deborah's webpage)

Education: B. A., 1986, M.A., 1978, California State University, Sacramento.

Experience: 2015–present Environmental Program Manager I (Nematology, Plant Pathology, Seed Science), CDFA; 2012–2015 Program Supervisor (Nematology, Plant Pathology, Seed Science), CDFA; 2004–2012 Senior Seed Botanist–Supervisor, CDFA Seed Laboratory; 2000–2004 Senior Seed Botanist, CDFA Seed Taxonomy Laboratory; 1984–2000 Associate Seed Botanist, CDFA Seed Taxonomy Laboratory; 1982–1984 Seed Botanist II, CDFA Seed Taxonomy Laboratory; 1980–1981 Agricultural Inspector I, CDFA Seed Physiology Laboratory and Botany Laboratory; 1978–1980 Agricultural Aid, CDFA Seed Physiology Laboratory and Botany Laboratory.

Area of Specialty/Responsibility: Seed Laboratory–Supervisor (staff of 8 scientific specialists, 8 environmental scientists, 4 technicians and several seasonal staff); primarily responsible for identification of seeds, fruits, and other plant propagules on a worldwide basis; provides scientific consultation on seed identification and seed quality assessment; performs research and develops new diagnostic methods related to the specialized fields of seed taxonomy and seed quality assessment; serves as Quality Assurance Manager for the Seed Laboratory.

Environmental Scientists

Ying Yi Guo, Agricultural Biological Technician

Israfiel Mohammed, Agricultural Biological Technician

Monica Negrete, Senior Agricultural Biological Technician

Joe Viglienzoni, Agricultural Biological Technician

Patrick Woods, Senior Agricultural Biological Technician

Technical Staff

Vina Da, Agricultural Technician

Jesus Estoque, Senior Laboratory Assistant

Allen Noguchi, Agricultural Biological Technician

Lainey Phan, Agricultural Technician

Kathleen Posis, Agricultural Technician

Marinell Soriano, Senior Laboratory Assistant

Melissa Swanson, Agricultural Technician

Jeanenne White, Senior Agricultural Biological Technician

Former Plant Pathologists

Dr. Barry Hill, Senior Plant Pathologist, Retired (Barry's webpage)

Dr. Dan Opgenorth, Senior Plant Pathologist, Retired (Dan's webpage)

Dr. James Smith, Senior Plant Pathologist, Retired

Timothy Tidwell, Senior Plant Pathologist & Program Supervisor, Retired (Tim's webpage)