The Council for Agricultural Science and Technology announced that the 2013 Borlaug CAST Communication Award goes to Jeff Simmons, president of Elanco, an animal health company. Nominees had to demonstrate an ability to communicate by written material, public presentations and the use of television, radio or other social media. Simmons was nominated by colleagues from several industry and nonprofit organizations for his significant contributions, including his passion for finding solutions for world hunger.
Simmons was able to transfer his passion into communicating effectively to a variety of audiences. One colleague said, "Simmons has that special ability to put the multiple complex issues involved in confronting hunger and the critical role of science in that process in terms that are not only understandable but inspiring."
Established by the Council for Agricultural Science and Technology in 1986, the annual award goes to a specialist who communicates the importance of food and agricultural science to the public, policymakers and the news media.
Simmons became interested in food security as an agriculture student and Future Farmers of America member in New York. After studying marketing and agricultural economics at Cornell, he joined Elanco and held leadership roles for the company in Brazil and Europe.
Simmons addresses groups that include senior business executives, government officials, research scientists and 4-H or Future Farmers of America members. In addition to public speaking, Simmons uses YouTube and Twitter.
An award presentation will occur at a breakfast co-hosted by DuPont and the Council of Agricultural Science and Technology as a side event at the World Food Prize Symposium on October 16, 2013, in Des Moines, Iowa. The Borlaug CAST Communication Award honors the legacies of Nobel Prize winner Dr. Norman Borlaug and Dr. Charles A. Black, the first president of the council.