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Charles W. Beard
Nelson A. Cox
Tien C. Tso
Johanns Recognizes Four ARS Scientists
Durham December 7, 2005
WASHINGTON, Dec. 7Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns
announced today that four Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientists have been chosen for the ARS
Science Hall of Fame. The
scientists have made important research contributions in plant physiology and
phytochemistry, enzymology, food science and poultry health.
"These scientists have contributed greatly to improving the safety and
quality of our food supply, and I'm proud that they are being honored for their
many accomplishments," said Johanns. "During the farm bill forums we held this
summer and fall, I heard loudly and clearly that our farmers and ranchers value
agricultural research and count on our scientists to make their work more
The inductees are veterinary medical officer Charles W. Beard,
microbiologist Nelson A. Cox, chemist Sigmund Schwimmer, and plant scientist
Tien C. Tso. They will receive plaques commemorating their achievements during
a ceremony tonight at the
National Arboretum. Permanent plaques will be on display at the ARS
National Visitor Center in
The ARS Science Hall of Fame, begun in 1986, recognizes agency
researchers for outstanding career achievements in agricultural science.
Inductees are nominated by their peers and must be retired or eligible for
Beard joined ARS in 1965 at the
Poultry Laboratory in Athens, Ga. During his 28-year career at ARS, Beard
developed the test for the detection of avian influenza antibodies in serum and
egg yolk. He has conducted experimental studies and published papers on a wide
variety of poultry disease subjects including serology, vaccines, the origins
of poultry diseases and disease containment.
Cox began his career with ARS in 1971 and still works for the agency.
In the 1970s, Cox and his colleagues conclusively demonstrated that fecally
contaminated, condemned poultry carcasses were microbiologically
indistinguishable from inspection-passed carcasses after reprocessing. Results
from this pivotal study convinced Congress of the merits of reprocessing. Cox
and his coworkers also identified hatcheries as significant reservoirs for
Salmonella and conducted extensive research on intervention strategies.
Schwimmer retired from ARS in 1974, but continues to collaborate with
scientists at the agency's
Regional Research Center in Albany, Calif. His research on the structure
and function of enzymes and their varied and powerful uses in food preparation
and preservation has earned him international recognition and transformed the
U.S. food industry. His work on low-temperature preservation contributed to the
foundation of techniques for modern frozen food. His other research led to
improved practices in brewing, baking and distilling and innovative advances in
health and nutrition.
Tso joined ARS in 1952 and retired in 1983. During his career, he was
a leader in studies of the roles of organic compounds such as sugars, organic
acids, amino acids and sterols in plants, and their metabolism in the plants.
His research findings have broad applications in flowers, fruits and other
plants. Tso also played a key role in establishing a scientific team that
helped resolve a major wheat trade issue between the United States and China in
the early 1990s.
ARS is the U.S. Department of
Agriculture's chief in-house scientific research agency.