Chilton Inducted into USDA Hall of Heroes

Syngenta scientist Dr. Mary-Dell Chilton was honored Thursday by the U.S. Department of Agriculture as an inductee into the Hall of Heroes.

Dr. Chilton is only the second woman to be inducted into the USDA’s Hall of Heroes and received the honor from USDA secretary Tom Vilsack in Washington, D.C. 

 The USDA Hall of Heroes was established 15 years ago as a way to recognize people who have done outstanding work in agriculture and related fields. 

Dr. Chilton’s research led to the production of the first transgenic plant in 1983. Her work at Syngenta led to improvements in plant resistance to insects and disease and the ability to tolerate extreme environments.

 “Dr. Chilton’s research has forever changed the way we conduct plant research and her groundbreaking accomplishments have shaped the way genetic plant research is conducted today,” Vilsack said. “I am pleased to honor Dr. Mary-Dell Chilton for her leadership and tremendous contributions to the field of agriculture.”

After receiving the award, Dr. Chilton spoke about how she would like to further her work. 

“My career in biotechnology has been an exciting journey, and I am amazed to see the progress we have made over the years,” said Dr. Chilton. “My hope is that through continued scientific discoveries, we will be able to provide a brighter and better future for the generations that follow us. I am proud of my efforts and my Syngenta colleagues’ continued drive to innovate new ways to deliver solutions to farmers. That’s what it’s all about.”

 Earlier this year, Dr. Chilton was also inducted into the National Inventor’s Hall of Fame at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

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