1. Home >
  2. News >
  3. Hugo C贸rdova farewell: stellar send-off for star scientist

Hugo C贸rdova farewell: stellar send-off for star scientist

Often in life鈥檚 special moments, joy and sadness can co-exist in a strange mixture. Such was the case at El Bat谩n on 18 May 2007, when CIMMYT bid formal farewell to retiring Distinguished Scientist, Hugo C贸rdova. First was a ceremony on the pyramid of the Borlaug Building, in which Hugo received a commemorative plaque from the hands of Director General, Masa Iwanaga. The text recognized his work during 1975-2007, leading to improved maize varieties and hybrids sown on several million hectares in developing countries, and closed with the words: 鈥溾hrough his commitment and advocacy (he) bore witness to the power of crop breeding to significantly improve the food security and livelihoods of developing country farmers.鈥 Highland maize breeder, Jos茅 Luis Torres, spoke on behalf of support staff, saying that 鈥溾 all who worked with Hugo C贸rdova learned something.鈥

Afterwards the decorous tone turned festive, as staff moved to the Rinc贸n Mexicano for a celebration with snacks, drinks, music, dancing, and camaraderie. Hugo, upon entering, was greeted immediately with the boisterous music of a live Mexican Mariachi band, which played for an hour. Party-goers were next treated to the considerable singing and guitar playing prowess of Maize Program administrator, Marcelo P茅rez, with occasional and enthusiastic choruses from those present. The celebration then went on with dance music.

Hugo found the ceremony and festivities impressive and moving. 鈥淚 want to thank all the directors and management staff, including Masa, Marianne, and Kevin, who have helped and supported me throughout the years to develop technologies that are used world-wide. I also want to recognize the contributions of national programs in this work and, finally, the Center鈥檚 support staff, who are the cornerstone of CIMMYT.鈥 We wish you the best always, Hugo!