MSU agricultural scientist earns international leadership award in India

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Karim Maredia (right) receives the International Leadership Award from the ICFA. (view larger image)

East Lansing, Mich. – Michigan State University (MSU) agricultural scientist Karim Maredia is the recipient of the International Leadership Award from the Indian Council of Food and Agriculture (ICFA) for his pioneering contributions in food and agriculture, particularly in Africa-India partnerships.

The award was presented to Maredia on Sept. 8 in New Delhi, India by governors of the two Indian states: Haryana and Uttar Pradesh, and the ICFA Chairman. More than 200 senior officials, scientists, farmers and other dignitaries from public and private organizations in India and the international community were present at the award ceremony, including MSU International Studies and Programs Dean Steven Hanson.

Maredia was selected for his leadership and contributions to international human resources development, global linkages and network building for agricultural research, education and outreach.

“As director of MSU’s South Asia Partnership initiative that is actively implementing collaborative research, education and outreach programs with India, Nepal, Sri Lanka, and Bangladesh, Dr. Maredia has played an active role in promoting south-south collaboration, especially with India and various countries in Africa which haven’t routinely worked together in the past,” said Hanson.  

While presenting the award, the ICFA Chairman M.J. Khan said, “Dr. Maredia has made a global footprint in projects, partnerships and human resource development in the field of agriculture.”

Maredia has led and been a part of several global projects funded by the United States Agency for International Development, United States Department of Agriculture – Foreign Agricultural Service, the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, the World Bank, and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.

“This is a great honor for me. “I am very grateful to have been given this distinction and recognition by such an important organization in my homeland, said Maredia.”

Son of a dairy farmer, Maredia earned his B.S. in agriculture from Konkan Agricultural University in India in 1979. Shortly afterwards, he came to the U.S. where he received his master’s in agriculture from Alabama A&M University in 1982 and his Ph.D. in pest management and plant breeding from the University of Arkansas in 1985.

Maredia worked at the International Maize and Wheat Improvement Center (CIMMYT) in Mexico for three years before joining the MSU Department of Entomology in 1989. The CIMMYT is known as the home of green revolution in developing countries.  

Since coming to MSU, Maredia has been instrumental in building partnerships with developing countries in an effort to improve agriculture and enhance food security. He coordinates international training programs in diverse areas including integrated pest management, biotechnology, biosafety, food safety and technology transfer among others.

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