As the current Director of the New York State Agricultural Experiment Station and Associate Dean of Cornell University's College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Thomas J. Burr has provided invaluable access to the station for Hobart and William Smith students.
Whether in the Station's fields or labs for independent studies, Honors projects, or internships, Thomas Burr has made it possible for Hobart and William Smith students to work with some of the best scientists in the country in advancing a sustainable agriculture and food system that will improve human health, protect the environment and support economic development.
A member of the Cornell faculty since 1977, Thomas Burr has served as chair of the department of plant pathology at the Agricultural Experiment Station since 2001. He has made substantial contributions in advancing research on plant diseases that are of local and worldwide importance, conducting research on the biology and control of bacterial pathogens that affect fruit crops, particularly grapes. His major emphasis is the study and control of crown gall, a disease that infects grapevines especially after they have been injured by freezing temperatures. Researchers in his program examine traditional methods of control as well as biological control and genetic technologies that confer resistance to host plants.
Thomas Burr received a bachelor of science in agricultural science and a master of science in plant pathology from the University of Arizona in 1971 and 1973, respectively. He received his Ph.D. in plant pathology from the University of California-Berkeley in 1977. He is a member of the American Association for the Advancement of Science and the American Psychopathological Society (APS). He was named a fellow of APS in 1997, having received the APS's Ciba-Geigy award in 1986 and Lee M. Hutchins Award in 1990.