The International Union of Forest Research Organizations (IUFRO) will honor a faculty member and a former graduate student from Virginia Tech’s College of Natural Resources and Environment at its World Congress in South Korea this month.

Professor Janaki R.R. Alavalapati of Blacksburg, Va., head of the Department of Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation, will receive the 2010 IUFRO Scientific Achievement Award, given in recognition of distinguished scientific achievement in the field of forestry research.

Alavalapati’s research focuses on exploring market solutions to promote sustainable use and management of forests and environment at local, national, and international levels. He has led internationally recognized scientific research and teaching programs, and advised and educated graduate students, research associates, and postdoctoral fellows from around the world. He recently served as a senior advisor for International Energy Affairs at the U.S. Department of State.

“Dr. Alavalapati is highly regarded for his research in forest economics and his positive influence on forest policy, and we are delighted to have him as part of our faculty and leadership team,” remarked Paul Winistorfer, college dean. “The IUFRO Scientific Achievement Award is a singular honor.”

Guillermo Trincado, who earned his doctorate in forest biometrics at Virginia Tech in 2006, will receive the Outstanding Doctoral Research Award. Trincado, currently a professor at the Universidad Austral de Chile, completed his doctorate under the advisement of University Distinguished Professor Harold Burkhart in the Department of Forest Resources and Environmental Conservation.

Trincado addressed important scientific questions with state-of-the-art quantitative analysis in his research on modeling the dynamics of first-order branches and knot formation on loblolly pine trees. One of the models he developed represents a significant advancement in the field of quantifying wood characteristics and relating those characteristics to silvicultural practices.

“It was a genuine pleasure to have Guillermo as part of our graduate program, and this recognition is well deserved,” said Burkhart. “As a student, Guillermo was highly motivated, focused, and dogged in pursuing difficult problems until he found a creative solution. We are proud to count him among our graduates and wish him continued success in the future.”

IUFRO is a non-profit, non-governmental international network of more than 15,000 forest scientists in almost 700 member organizations in over 100 countries. Its mission is to promote global cooperation in forest-related research and enhance the understanding of the ecological, economic, and social aspects of forests and trees, as well as to disseminate scientific knowledge to stakeholders and decision-makers and to contribute to forest police and on-the-ground forest management.

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