Dr. Michelle M. Colby serves as the National Program Leader for Animal Biosecurity in the Division of Animal Systems at the National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA). She provides leadership for veterinary and animal biosecurity programs including the Veterinary Medicine Loan Repayment Program, the National Animal Health Laboratory Network, and Tactical Sciences for Agricultural Biosecurity.
Dr. Fayad is a plant pathologist specialized in plant viruses and integrated pest management (IPM). His research experience has focused on the identification, epidemiology, biological and molecular diversity of viruses, virus movement, and interactions between viruses and plant virus resistance genes. His project management experience has focused on IPM of high-value vegetable crops, grain crops, and export fruit crops.
Wendy Flatt serves as a Biological Science Program Specialist within the Institute of Bio-energy, Climate and Environment, providing assistance for several programs including Rapid Response to Extreme Weather, Soils and Water and others. Before coming to NIFA, Wendy spent 6 years with a large agricultural cooperative in central Missouri; as a livestock products and forage sales representative, partnering with mainly beef cattle producers to increase efficiency and profitability of their operations. Prior to her agriculture cooperative experience, Wendy was with University of Missouri Extension for 13-years as a Livestock Extension Specialist and County Program Director. Wendy covered 5-counties for livestock and grazing programming and worked with the local extension council and commissioners in the county she was based in. Wendy earned her Bachelor of Science degree from University of Missouri in Columbia and her Masters of Science at Colorado State, both degrees in the Animal Sciences.
Dr. Amy Ganguli serves as a National Program Leader within the Institute of Bioenergy, Climate, and Environment providing leadership for programs involving sustainable agroecosystem management. Prior to joining NIFA, Amy spent nearly 12 years as a teaching and research professor of rangeland ecology and three years as an ecosystem ecologist for a non-profit organization. She has conducted research on a variety of rangeland restoration techniques and has led several interdisciplinary projects addressing land management effects on ecosystem services, rangeland/soil health with specific emphasis on land potential, and climate change with an emphasis on resilience based management strategies. She received her Ph.D. in Range Ecology from Oklahoma State University, M.S. in Range Science from Texas Tech University, and a B.S. in Wildlife Biology and Management from the University of Rhode Island.
Dr. Ashley Mueller is a National Program Leader in the Division of Family and Consumer Sciences within the Institute of Youth, Family, and Community. She provides leadership for programs in civic engagement and leadership which include the Food and Agriculture Defense Initiative Extension Disaster Education Network (FADI-EDEN), and the Smith-Lever Special Needs Competitive Grant Program. Ashley also co-leads the AFRI program Rapid Response to Extreme Weather Across Food and Agricultural Systems (A1712), and the Food and Agriculture Service Learning Program (FASLP). She also serves as the lead National Program Leader for the Smith-Lever Act Capacity (b) and (c) and Special Needs grants.