Colorado State Professors Honored as Fellows with the American Association for the Advancement of Science

Note to Reporters: Photos of the four professors are available with the news release at

Four Colorado State University faculty members have been elected as fellows of the American Association for the Advancement of Science for their outstanding contributions to their specific fields of study – three of them from the Department of Biology.

The fellows are: Alan Knapp, Anireddy S. N. Reddy and James Detling, all in the Department of Biology, and Gary Peterson, in the Department of Soil and Crop Sciences.

Nominees are chosen by current AAAS fellows in areas ranging from anthropology to education and physics.

"Election as a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science is a distinguished honor in recognition of outstanding contributions to science,” said Daniel Bush, chair of the biology department at Colorado State. “AAAS serves more than 250 affiliated societies and academies of science, and publishes the international journal Science. Because it is the largest general science society in the United States, recognition by AAAS is a particularly noteworthy honor.”

More about the honorees:

Detling, a biology professor, focuses his studies on understanding the roles of biotic and abiotic factors in the structure and function of grassland ecosystems. He is known for work on determining the direct and indirect effects that herbivores have on individual plants, plant communities and nutrient cycling processes as well as the potential effects global climate change has on grassland ecosystems.

Knapp, a professor and senior ecologist in the biology department, has spent more than two decades researching ecosystem processes in grassland habitats. His renowned work in physiological plant ecology, or how plants respond physiologically to changes in the physical and biotic environment, won him the Scholarship Impact Award in 2009. The award is one of the highest annual honors given by CSU to faculty who have made national or international impacts with their studies.

Peterson, a professor and head of the soil and crop sciences department, has conducted research focusing on applying soil science principles to solve field related soil management problems. In 2008, he was president of the Soil Science Society of America, an international education society that focuses on the conservation and wise use of natural resources to produce food, feed and fiber crops. Peterson helped found the Dryland Agroecosystem Project in 1985 at CSU and has continued as an advisor on the project. This research focuses on developing dryland cropping systems that maximize water conservation and minimize soil erosion for a wide range of climate-soil environments.

Reddy, a biology professor, is known for his research dealing with calcium signaling, pre-mRNA splicing and engineering disease resistance in plants. He runs a laboratory on the CSU campus with six fellow scientists that use molecular, cell biological, genetic and biochemical approaches to study basic and applied research in plant cell and molecular biology.

For a full list of the 2009 AAAS Fellows, visit