IAR&T Gets new Executive Director.

The Governing board of the Institute of Agricultural Research and Training, Obafemi Awolowo University headed by the Vice Chancellor, Obafemi Awolowo University has approved the appointment of Professor Veronical Obatolu as the next Director for a period of three (3) years. Professor (Mrs) Obatolu, a Professor of Human Nutrition had served the Institute for more than 3 decades. Obatolu, born more than five and half decades ago to late Pa. Jimoh and Madam Esther Alawode, was the last born of her mother. She started schooling at the tender age of 3 and went through all spheres of education (Nursery, Primary, Secondary and University up to PhD level). The new Executive Director joined the Institute as a project staff in 1988 with Soybean Utilization Project after her first degree and became a full staff of the Institute in 1994. She was employed as a Research FellowII and rose through the ranks to become a Research Professor in October 2006. She has over 25 years of national and international professional experiences, committed to aiding people to eat well and lead healthy lifestyles through research, classroom teaching and food security intervention designed programmes. She was a Post-doctoral Fellow of the Department of Food and Nutrition, University of Maine, Orono, ME, in the USA from 2002 to 2004. She also holds Certificates in Food safety and agribusiness, Right based approach to food and nutrition security and Monitoring, evaluation and impact assessment of food and nutrition from Wageningen International, in the Netherlands. She has worked as a visiting Senior Lecturer at the Institute of Health and Community Studies Studies, Bournemouth, UK and an Adjunct Professor at Afe Babalola University (ABUAD), Ado-Ekiti teaching several courses in food and human nutrition. She has served as a reviewer for various journals nationally and internationally and attended many international conferences. Professor Obatolu is a member of several professional bodies including the International Nutrition Society, Institute of Food Technologist and British Nutrition Society. She has authored and co-authored over 60 publications, including peer-reviewed journal articles, books monographs and technical reports and conferences presentations. She has gained recognition in her work and has international honours as recepient of US National Marine Fisheries Services Post-doctoral Award and Phi Tau Sigma Award, Department of Food Science and Nutrition, University of Maine, Orono, the USA among others. She is a member of a multi-national research hub on food security within the UN-Habitat Partnership Universities Initiative and a mentor of the African Women in Agricultural Research and Development (AWARD). The new Executive Director enthusiastically intends to build on the foundation laid by her predecessors to make the Institute an Agricultural Innovation and Development Centre with the mission of contributing to sustainable rural development through demand-driven appropriate technologies that are technically feasible, economically viable and socio-culturally adaptable to farming systems in different agro-ecologies of Nigeria. Similarly, she has been an active participant in the previous administrations. Professor Veronica Obatolu was married to late Charles Obatolu and blessed with children, Seyi, Seye, Seni and grand children.

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