Dr. Sarah Evanega Honored at the 2021 Borlaug CAST Communication Award Ceremony during the World Food Prize

October 27, 2021 | Council for Agricultural Science and TechnologyAmes, Iowa

Since 2010, the Council for Agricultural Science and Technology (CAST) has played a key role the World Food Prize/Borlaug Dialogue, with its presentation of the Borlaug CAST Communication Award (BCCA). Well-respected researchers, diplomats, and academics have won the award, but all have one thing in common: they convey important information to the public and policymakers alike.

The October 21 BCCA event honored the 2021 recipient, Dr. Sarah Evanega. Evanega is a professor at the Boyce Thompson Institute for Plant Research and the founding director of the Alliance for Science. The event was held at the Hall of Laureates in Des Moines, Iowa, and was a part of the World Food Prize agenda. The breakfast session was emceed by CAST EVP and CEO Kent Schescke and included welcoming remarks from World Food Prize Foundation President Barbara Stinson. Sponsor comments from Farm Journal Foundation CEO Tricia Beal, insights from former CropLife America President Jay Vroom, and introductory remarks from Cornell University International Programs Director Ronnie Coffman preceded Evanega’s captivating presentation.

Evanega spoke on Set a Bolder Table for the Future: Modify, Include, Diversify. She started off by thanking her family, donors, friends, and colleagues. Evanega explained why scientists and agriculturalists need to “modify, include, and diversify.” As she said, “You can be that person who offers a chair, a hand, and says, ‘Will you join me at my table?’ ‘Will you join us at our table?’, and just as importantly, ‘May we join you at your table?’” Evanega believes there are three ways to help transform the world: reject exclusivity, form unlikely alliances, and be risky and daring altruists. When discussing how to reject exclusivity, she explained, “Changing who gets invited to our tables doesn’t happen all at once, but we have to start somewhere.” The video of the event can be viewed here.

The Borlaug CAST Communication Award is presented annually for outstanding achievement by a scientist, engineer, technologist, or other professional working in the agricultural, environmental, or food sectors for contributing to the advancement of science in the public policy arena. The award is dedicated to Dr. Norman E. Borlaug, “The Man Who Fed the World” and author of the first CAST publication in 1973, and to Dr. Charles A. Black, first CAST President, first Executive Vice President, and member of the founding committee of CAST.

The Borlaug CAST Communication Award is sponsored by the Farm Journal Foundation. Additional support for the breakfast and video recording was provided by FMC.

Back row: Mike Naig, Ryan Locke, Kent Schescke. Front row: Tricia Beal, Sarah Evanega, Jay Vroom.
Dr. Evanega presenting at the 2021 BCCA event in the Hall of Laureates in front of a painting of Dr. Norman E. Borlaug.

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