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Sharon Clay

Photo of Sharon Clay
Title Distinguished Professor
Office Building Edgar S. McFadden Biostress Lab
Room Number 245C
Mailing Address South Dakota State University
Agronomy, Horticulture & Plant Science
SNP 245C, Box 2140C
Brookings, SD 57007

Dr. Clay received a BS in horticulture fro the Univ. Wis. Madison, an MS in plant science from Univ. Idaho, and a PhD in agronomy from the Univ. of Minnesota. She has conducted weed management studies in cropping systems including corn, soybean, wheat, barley , flax sunflower, safflower and rangeland. Studies have included weed physiology, the influence of weeds on crop growth and genomic responses, and site-specific weed management strategies. She has published over 150 scientific articles and has served as editor on several books and associate editor for several journals. She has been co-author of four best papers of the year. She has served on numerous national committees and grant review panels. She was elected American Society of Agronomy fellow in 2009 and served as the president in 2013. In 2017 she was awarded the Gamma Sigma Delta International Distinguished Achievement in Agriculture Award.

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Professional Memberships

• American Society of Agronomy, Incoming President elect (first woman ASA president), presidential term, 2013. Major accomplishments: Committee appointments and chair positions, started Greenfield Scholars an undergraduate mentoring program paired with CCAs for professional development; fellow review; nominating committee for presidents; ACCESS chair (2014) review of CEO performance; science policy oversight
• South Dakota Academy of Science, Vice president, 1996-1997, President, 1997-1998, Executive Board, 1995-2000
• Sigma Xi – South Dakota State University Chapter (Member since 1991), Chairman of graduate student paper contest committee, 1992-1993, Vice president, 1995, President, 1996
• Gamma Sigma Delta - South Dakota State University Chapter, Treasurer, 1994; Secretary, 1995; Vice President, 1996; President, 1997
• Weed Science Society of America, member since 1983
o Committees include Herbicide Handbook, Necrology, Resolution, Environmental Quality (2000-2003)
o Associate editor Weed Science 2000- present
o Previous committees (2006 – 2010)– Herbicides for Minor use; Education committee
o Current committees (2012-2015) Editorial board; Weed Science Journal Board; Finance Board; Environmental Aspects; Research committee
o Chair of Environmental Aspects section, symposium organizer for soil/herbicide interactions

Academic Interests/Expertise

Undergraduate classes
• Weed Science (PS 343) (3 cr) a required undergraduate class for Plant Science Degree (Since 1989). Student numbers from 18 (1989) to 50 (1999). Developed the Laboratory and Lecture Note Manuals for the course
• Introduction to Weed Management (PS 200) (2 cr) (started 2001) Student numbers from 8 to 16.
• Co-taught
o Senior capstone class (ABS 476), Biostress Center of Excellence capstone;
o Agroecology (PS 446),
Graduate classes
• Advanced Weed Science (2 cr) 700 level course.
• Co-taught
o Geospatial applications in agriculture
o Isotope use in environmental science

Committee Activities

• Panel Manager Soils – 2011. AFRI Foundational Awards
• USDA-CSREES NCR 177. Non herbicide alternatives for weed management. Member 1992 1996. Chairman, 1993-1994.
• Chairman of departmental space and resource allocation committee, 1993-1994
• Symposium organizer and chair: Alternative weed management. Seattle ASA meetings, 1994
• Soil-Herbicide Interactions section of Weed Science Soc., 1995, 2010
• Edaphic Factors section of North Central Weed Science Society, 1996
• Agronomy Society of America.
o Norvartis Young Research Award Agronomy Society of America, 2000. Committee member 1999
o Chair ASA Women in Agriculture, 2007
o Chair Div. A-8. 2009
Panel member for reviewing grant proposals:
• NAPIAP 1994, 1995
• USDA-NRI Small Business Administration 1994, 1995
• Southern IPM proposals, 1998, 2000, 2002
• USDA-NRI Soils and Soil Biology 1996, 1997, 2001, 2003
• USDA/EPA Program 406 National Water Quality proposals 2000, 2001, 2002
• Invasive Species 2006
• Weedy and Invasive Plants – 2010, 2013, 2015
• Panel Manager Soils – 2011. AFRI Foundational Awards
USDA-ARS program review team
• Panel member for 2006 and 2014 OSQR ARS Soil Science Review

Area(s) of Research

• Weed biology and physiology
• Crop/weed interactions including corn, wheat, barley, oil seed crops (sunflowers, flax, soybean), rangeland, and pastures.
• Precision agriculture to assess weed variability across landscape positions.
• Herbicide-soil- antibiotic interactions to limit or eliminate herbicide contamination of surface and ground water.
• Transcriptome and stable isotope (13C and 15N) analysis explore weed-crop interactions on corn and soybean, crop effects on weeds, and abiotic stress effects on corn.
• Nonchemical options for weed control including tillage, crop rotations, cover crops, grit sprayer applications, and biocontrol options.
• IR-4 research to examine herbicide/pesticide residue in minor use crops

Former Positions Held

● Professor, Plant Science Dept., SDSU, 7/98 – present (20% teaching/80% research)
● Assoc. Professor, Plant Science Dept., SDSU, 7/93-6/98
● Assistant Professor, Plant Science Dept., SDSU, 8/89-6/93
● Research Agronomist – (Post doctoral position) USDA-ARS, Soil & Water Management Research Unit, St Paul, MN. 7/86-8/89

Grants

EXTERNAL FUNDING
● I have been an author or co-author on grants in several areas to different agencies. Since 1989, I have received $10 M in external grant funds directly to SDSU for weed science and related projects and have been involved with multi-institutional projects that have totaled close to $50 M.

Awards & Honors

• USDA-Edminster Award, 1987; Gamma Sigma Delta Research Award, 1996; Dean’s Award for Teaching/Research Excellence, 1997; F.O. Butler Award Excellence in Research 1997; Sigma Xi Research Award, 1999; Gamma Sigma Delta Teaching Award 2002; SD AES Griffith Faculty Research Award, 2005; IR-4 Meritorious Service Award, 2005; Weed Science paper nominated for best paper of the year 2005; Agronomy Journal paper selected by journal staff for Science in Action review, 2005; Weed Science Best Paper of the Year, 2007; ASA Fellow, 2009; Chair for Agricultural Systems (A-8) in the American Society of Agronomy; Corn Best Management Practices, selected for excellence by ASA 2010; Woman of Distinction – SDSU 2010; Dean’s Team Award for Excellence in Extension (2004); Teaching (2005); Research (2005); Weed Science Best Paper of the Year 2012; American Society of Agronomy President 2013; Weed Science Paper of the Year 2013; SDSU Distinguished Professor, 2016.
• Gamma Sigma Delta – Executive Committee 2009-2013 (President 2012); Executive committee 1997- 2001 (President, 2000); International Gamma Sigma Delta Agriculture Service Award, 2017
• Sigma Xi Executive Committee (President) President’s Service award, 2001.

International Recognition:
● Invited speaker CCA program Toluca, Mexico (September 2014)
● Invited speaker South African Precision Ag Congress (April 2013)
● Invited keynote speaker and panel leader for Global Agronomy session, International Agronomy Conference, New Delhi, India (Nov. 2012)
• Worked with Dr. F. Pati, Boliva (2.5 yr 2009-2011)
• Worked with Dr. Aguilar, Mexico (worked in my lab for 3 summers, co-wrote journal articles)
• Drs. Rola and Sadowski, Poland (co-wrote international grant proposals)
• Invited speaker to NATO Conference (see invited presentation) 1997.
• Invited keynote speaker, Mexican Weed Science Society, 1996.
• Initiated an undergraduate student fund for Mexican Weed Science Society.
• Invited speaker at Mexican Herbicide Resistance Workshop, 1999.