September 21–23, 2005

ITEM 128-2001-R0905    Authorization to Confer the Title of Professor Emeritus of Plant Pathology upon Gary Strobel; Montana State University

THAT: Upon the occasion of the retirement of Gary Strobel from the faculty of Montana State University the Board of Regents wishes to express its appreciation for his service to the University, the Montana University System, and the people of the State of Montana.

EXPLANATION: Dr. Gary Strobel will retire on September 30, 2005, after 42 years of performing research and teaching at Montana State University. His career began in 1963 as an assistant professor, and since that time he has clearly demonstrated excellence in research, scholarship, teaching, and service.

His research and academic interests have centered on microbe-higher plant relationships. He was co-contributor to the discovery that somaclonal variation occurs in plants and can be used for plant improvement. The discovery of the Ri plasmid in Agrobacterium rhizogenes also originated in his lab. His work on the modification of tree micro flora to preclude plant disease received major national attention in his efforts to biologically control Dutch elm disease. More recently, he has begun to examine endophytic fungi and bacteria for their novel bioactive compounds and their unique biology and has found tens of novel substances that have potential use in medicine, agriculture and industry including the pseudomycins, fungal taxol, coronamycin, and isopestacin. He has lectured at over 350 institutes and universities-worldwide (including Yale, Harvard, and Rockefeller Universities), published over 320 articles in scientific journals and holds nearly 50 USA and International patents.

While serving at MSU, Dr. Strobel hosted over 40 undergraduate students, scores of graduate students and guided the work of nearly 100 post doctoral scientists who came to study at MSU from at least 25 different countries around the world. From 1979-2000 he was chief of the Montana NSF EPSCOR program which encourages science at all levels of society.

The faculty of the Department of Plant Sciences and Plant Pathology voted unanimously to recommend Dr. Strobel for Emeritus status.

For these and other contributions, the Board of Regents of Higher Education is pleased to confer upon Gary Strobel the rank of Professor Emeritus of Plant Pathology at Montana State University and wishes him well for many years in the future.