WASHINGTON, Feb. 9 Technical information specialist Bethany Redlin of Sidney, Mont., has been named the winner of the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) 2004 Excellence in Information Award for her work in disseminating research information about some of the most important plant and insect invaders in the American West. ARS is the chief scientific research agency of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
In a ceremony today at USDA headquarters here, Redlin received a cash award and a certificate.
Redlin works at the ARS Northern Plains Agricultural Research Laboratory (NPARL) in Sidney. The facility is committed to solving agricultural problems that affect the Northern Plains states including invasive plants, irrigation and dryland challenges, and insect pests such as grasshoppers and Mormon crickets, which have been known to overrun local rangelands during times of drought.
Ms. Redlins knowledge of information technologies and her personal creativity have resulted in the development of many new and innovative methods of information sharing, said Thomas Shanower, NPARL research leader.
Among her most noteworthy accomplishments, Redlin helped develop multimedia software while working with TEAM Leafy Spurge, a multiagency group trying to control this invasive weed on western rangeland.
Thanks to Redlins efforts, the software program features commentary by research scientists that allows listeners to learn directly from experts in the field of invasive weed management. In addition, she helped create similar computer software for the ARS grasshopper research program and has overseen distribution of more than 75,000 copies of the leafy spurge and grasshopper CDs.
Redlin also has played a major role in writing and distributing the labs PlainFacts electronic newsletter and its popular Just for Kids webpage, as well as overseeing the continued development of the labs Internet site.
ARS presents the Excellence in Information award to recognize outstanding contributions to the creation and distribution of information products and technologies that support agricultural research and education.
Redlin lives in Sidney with her husband, Dan Mocko, and daughter Rhea. She joined ARS in December 1999 with a background in journalism and print production.