Water Scientist Receives International Award

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Joan Rose, Homer Nowling chair of water research, received the first Hei-jin Woo Award from the International Water Association. (view larger image)

MAES-affiliated researcher Joan B. Rose, who holds the Homer Nowlin chair of water research, was recognized for her work in water sciences with the first Hei-jin Woo Award from the International Water Association (IWA).

The award is dedicated to the memory of Hei-jin Woo, a leading Korean engineer who studied water science. The award recognizes the achievements of women in the water sciences and was presented in September during the opening ceremony of the World Water Congress in Vienna.

“Hei-jin Woo was a scientist who died young in Korea. The award represents that untapped resource of young women in the sciences,” Rose said. “To be the first award recipient is humbling and very honoring. We want to continue to create the best pathway for young women to enter into science.”

“The Hei-jin Woo Award recognizes women’s contributions to the advancement of the management of water,” IWA president David Garman said. “Joan Rose is a very worthy first recipient, having established herself as a global leader in the health assessment of water supplies using both traditional techniques and advanced molecular science. Women are often underrepresented in our profession, and this award brings to the forefront female colleagues who lead their fields.”

Rose studies water pollution microbiology, working to understand the relationship between microbial water quality and human health. Rose has advanced the field by examining key parasites and viruses as waterborne pathogens and has supported the advancement of a waterborne pathogen genomics program.

“Joan Rose epitomizes the spirit of the Hei-jin Woo Award, and it is fitting that she was chosen as its first recipient,” said Jeffrey Armstrong, dean of the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources. “Her work covers a broad spectrum of water resource issues, from microbial safety to watershed protection to the ecological health of the Great Lakes and the entire world’s water system. She’s served in myriad capacities at the local, state, national and international levels as a preeminent researcher and tireless advocate for water quality and safety for the health of humans, animals and the environment.”

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