FVSU recognizes top grant writers at annual program

May 3, 2013 – The Office of Sponsored Programs recognized Fort Valley State University’s top grant writers and principal investigators for their grantsmanship efforts during the 2013 Spring Training and Recognition Program in the C.W. Pettigrew Center on April 18. This year’s keynote speaker was Gary W. Black, the 16th commissioner of Georgia’s Department of Agriculture. Joyce Johnson, the university’s post awards coordinator, organized the conference. “We’re here to honor and recognize the super work of FVSU faculty staff and administration, who not only did proposals, but secured research and grant money,” said Alecia Livatt, interim development director. FVSU can hold its own in research and grant funding. Without you talented individuals, this would not be possible; so we celebrate you.” College of Agriculture, Family Sciences and Technology’s dean, Dr. Govind Kannan, introduced Georgia State Agricultural Commissioner Gary Black to the audience. Black said that organizations needed to ask three questions to improve the health of their organizations. In between baseball stories and homespun humor, the commissioner gave advice to FVSU grant writers about how to succeed in their endeavors. The agriculture commissioner told attendees that FVSUshould create economic partnerships that directly benefit the community. He encouraged the campus to partner with the Georgia Agricultural Commodity Commission and the state’s blueberry commission. Black also commended FVSU’s CAFST for theStevia plant research it was conducting. Kannan and is team are on the cutting edge to cultivate practices for new varieties of the Stevia plant,” said Black. FVSU is in the lead on that. We welcome the 60 to 100 acres [that are growing], but we’re working with the FDA to expand to 3,000 acres of Stevia and put people to work to produce an American-made product, instead of getting it from overseas.” Black said that research relevance was also crucial to obtaining meaningful results, which would increase the number of state jobs. He also encouraged campus administrators to work with other state business groups. “This is not just a message for FVSU, it is one that I tell [everyone]. You should have a representative on board at the Georgia Chamber of Commerce,” said Black. “The impact would be big.” Black said that having access to representatives that are engaged with business leaders helps to expand issues from simply academic relevance to an issue that’s relevant for the entire community. After his speech, Dr. Melody L. Carter, vice president of external affairs and executive director for the FVSU Foundation, Inc., and Dr. Canter Brown Jr., executive vice president and interim vice president for academic affairs, presented Black with a crystal award for his speech at the event. Following lunch, Johnson issued special awards to outstanding university principal investigators and directors. Carter concluded the event with the announcement that the Board of Regents had unanimously approved the university’s proposal for the FVSU Research and Service Corporation, which would assist, support and further FVSU research, service and educational missions.

following grant writers were recognized:

The  Grantsmanship: Researcher of the Year Dr. Erika Styles, Agricultural Research

Grantsmanship: Program/Project Director of the Year Joy Moten-Thomas, Cooperative Extension

Grantsmanship: Most Submissions AwardShirley McClellan, director, Educational Talent Search Program TRIO

(Seven Awards Submitted)

Grantsmanship: Outstanding Principal Investigator/Project Director of the Year Dr. Dwayne Daniels, professor of chemistry

Grantsmanship: Newcomer of the Year Dr. Teresa Shakespeare, assistant professor of biology


Contact: Christina D. Milton, writer Fort Valley State University Office of Marketing and Communications (478) 822-7589, miltonc@fvsu.edu