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University of Wisconsin life sciences dean Molly Jahn steps down

University of Wisconsin
November 1, 2010
University of Wisconsin-Madison Chancellor Biddy Martin and Provost Paul M. DeLuca Jr. today (Oct. 28) announced that Molly Jahn, who has led UW-Madison's College of Agricultural and Life Sciences since 2006, will step down as dean of the college, effective Jan. 1.

Jahn, a plant geneticist who came to Wisconsin from Cornell University, plans to assume her faculty position in the departments of agronomy and genetics on Jan. 2. She will serve half time as a special adviser to the provost and chancellor for sustainability sciences, a post she will hold through July 31. At that time, she will return to the faculty full-time.

"Now is the time for a change in leadership for the college," says Martin. "Dean Jahn has re-energized CALS. She has enhanced our relationships with Wisconsin's agricultural community, helped grow the research enterprise and put the college in a position for future success."

Jahn is noted for her research on breeding new vegetable varieties for use around the world and on gene discovery in crop plants such as peppers and cucumbers with a focus on economically important plant traits. She succeeded Elton Aberle, who retired in September 2005, and was the first woman to lead UW-Madison's College of Agricultural and Life Sciences.

"I was recruited to lead the college toward a 21st century vision for excellence and impact in agricultural and life sciences, and in the past four years, we have seen tremendous achievement toward that goal," says Jahn. "I'm very proud to have been a part of this chapter in the college's illustrious history, and I feel that the college is in an outstanding position as I take on a new challenge in my career.

"I am enthusiastic about the opportunity now to focus on contributing to the university's broader efforts in sustainability sciences. This work will build on our accomplishments in CALS, my scholarly interests and my recent experience in federal government, and I look forward to helping our university leadership in this critical area."
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