Testimonials for Pioneer Members Jeffrey Dangl and Sarah Grant

Bob Dietrich – I started as a post doc with Jeff in the early days, back when his lab was in Germany and he was getting his lab up and running. It has been exciting over the years to watch as Jeff built up his group and explored new and interesting areas of plant biology. I am very glad I had Jeff as a mentor. He was the major contributor to any successes I have had in my career. Even more important to me, Jeff has been a great life-long friend.

Murray Grant – Pioneer nowhere nearly describes Jeff’s contribution to plant microbe interactions, mentoring and inspiring the current and future generations of plant scientists.

Yijian He – I met Jeff and Sarah at the Dallas international airport when I was on my way to Chapel Hill. I spoke unfluent English and introduced myself as a fresh graduate student from China. Jeff asked me if I had a place to live at Chapel Hill, and if I need a ride to my apartment. Then he offered me an opportunity to rotate in his lab! This encounter started my fantastic experience in the Dangl lab. Jeff and Sarah taught me many, many things about science and research. Most importantly, they taught me how to improve myself to be a better researcher. I cannot thank Jeff and Sarah enough for their mentoring, help, support and encouragement.

Ben Holt – All my life, I have sought out groups of energized and creative thinkers who are trying to understand complex problems. I have yet to come across a better group of such individuals than Jeff’s lab. Jeff has a knack for identifying genuinely important problems that are worth solving, and then recruiting exceptional people itching to find some answers. Everything good that has happened in my scientific career flowed from exposure to Jeff’s deep insights and insistence on excellence, as well as the truly excellent scientists he recruited. I am extremely fortunate that Jeff gave me an opportunity at such a formative part of my life – it quite literally changed everything for me.

Susanne Kjemtrup-Lovelace – I joined Jeff’s group as a post-doc, looking for an environment where I would be constantly challenged to work and think about plant science in a novel and innovative way. I certainly found that environment! Interestingly, Jeff’s science and mentorship also consistently attracted people who were very smart and very fun, so those long hours in the lab were both socially and scientifically rewarding.

Jean-Benoit Morel – I met Jeff in the mid-90s’ in the Max-Delbruck lab-Germany, and I then followed him to his lab at UNC. By letting me test hypotheses throughout my Ph.D. work, kindly advising me, he deeply contributed to building me as a scientist. His recommendation to always give and not retain is still my leitmotiv.

Gopal Subramaniam -I greatly benefited from being in Jeff’s lab for 3 years as a post-doc. As I soldier on in my career as a Research Scientist at Agriculture Canada, not a day goes by without invoking Jeff’s influence on my research program. So, I want to thank Jeff for his mentorship and intellect that guides my scientific principles. Jeff well deserves recognition as an ASPB pioneer.

Saijun Tang – Great mentor, wonderful person.

Paulo Teixeira – Jeff is an inspiring scientist, leader, and human. He is the kind of person that teaches with acts, and you can learn a lot just by observing him. Yet, he will know the perfect words to say when you ask for advice. His passion for science is unquestionable and he is always enthusiastic to discuss new ideas and results. I would always walk out his office excited, motivated, and inspired about our project. I am proud of being part of the Dangl family, and I will always remember my time in Chapel Hill with joy.