The Vantage Point

Glenda Humiston 
Vice President
UC Agriculture and Natural Resources  

I am thrilled that  Michael Drake will return to UC as its next President . As the former Chancellor of UC Irvine, as Vice President of UC Health Affairs, and as a past board chairman for the Association of American Universities and the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities, Dr. Drake understands the importance of our land grant university mission and Cooperative Extension outreach to communities. During his first meeting with the leadership of UC’s Office of the President, I was very excited when he brought up the positive role that soil and agriculture can play in climate resiliency, the importance of food security and how UC research was essential to supporting those critical goals.

Following that,  I listened to Regent John Perez interview Dr. Drake  on his vision for UC. Dr. Drake spoke passionately about the need for public university engagement with communities and the public university's role in improving the lives of residents; I encourage you to listen to the interview. Dr. Drake brings a strong track record of growing programs, supporting all aspects of the university community and advancing diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives. I look forward to working with him and ensuring that the work of UC ANR remains a UC priority.
 
In other news, our UC President’s Advisory Commission on ANR has been very active the past few months. President Napolitano recently signed approval for an updated charter that now includes three standing committees to support the ANR mission; they have already been meeting to design and prioritize strategies. Those committees are 1) Advocacy and Outreach; 2) Funds Development; and 3) Emerging Issues. A big thanks to those who have long been advocating for our budget, our California delegates on the Council for Agricultural Research, Extension and Teaching (CARET): Bill Frost, Mike Mellano, Dina Moore and Jean-Mari Peltier!
 
We are also excited to welcome several new members to the commission; more information on them will be in next month’s newsletter. Among those are the California Secretary of Resources, Wade Crowfoot, serving in an ex-officio position similar to how the CDFA Secretary has long served. We are very excited to expand and enhance our partnerships with the various departments within the Resources Agency. 
 
On a closing note, these have been the final weeks of President Napolitano’s service to the UC system. I am honored to have had the opportunity to serve with this dynamic leader for the past five years. Janet Napolitano is a visionary leader who has catalyzed UC’s leadership on carbon neutrality, food security, innovation, student support and much more.   Her closing remarks to the UC Board of Regents  are well worth a listen.
 
Warm regards to all,
Glenda