Zhonghu He, CIMMYT distinguished scientist and country liaison officer for China, received the China Agriculture Elite Award from the Ministry of Agriculture (MOA) in December 2012. The award, presented to 10 Chinese agricultural scientists every 2 years, was created by the MOA in 2006 to recognize individual scientists for their outstanding contributions to the advancement of agricultural science and technology and to the development of agriculture and rural economy in China.
He established and led the joint CIMMYT-Chinese Academy of Agricultural Science (CAAS) program. Under his leadership, the program has achieved significant progress in quality testing protocol standardization for traditional Chinese products, development and application of functional markers, characterization and QTL mapping for adult resistance to yellow rust and powdery mildew, variety development, and training.
As part of the award, He also received USD 32,000, which he donated to the CAAS Zhuang Qiaosheng Wheat Award Foundation designed to recognize breeders and agronomists at provincial and prefectural levels for their contributions to wheat improvement in China. “This great honor is not only for me, but also for my team members, my collaborators in China, CIMMYT, and other countries around the world,” He explained his donation. He will add this award to the 2008 First Class Science and Technology Award from the State Council, which he received for his work on quality improvement, and the 2011 First Class Science Award from the Beijing Municipal Government for China-CIMMYT wheat shuttle breeding. Congratulations!