2022 – 2023 Officers

Executive board members. From left to right: Akash Datta, Jeremy Logrono, Raysa Gevartosky, Matthew Murphy, Anup Dhakal, Lucas Berger Munaro, and Sarah Lipps.

President: Sarah Lipps

“I am in the second year of my Ph.D. My research focuses on understanding the complexities of resistance in maize to Fusarium graminearum. We are using a multi-faceted approach that involves traditional association mapping, biochemical pathways, kernel composition, and machine learning to better understand resistance so we can breed better hybrids. In my free time, my two dogs make sure I am always outside whether it’s hiking, running, or enjoying a dog friendly outdoor patio in town.”

Vice President: Matthew Murphy

Matthew Murphy is the vice president of CSGO. Previously, Matthew has also served as the CSGO social chair in 2019 and 2020. Another organization that Matthew is involved with in the Department of Crop Sciences is the UIUC Corteva Agriscience Plant Sciences Symposium. Matthew is a third-year Ph.D. student in the Lipka Lab in the Department of Crop Sciences. Matthew’s research interests include testing different statistical models in identifying variance quantitative trait loci (vQTLs), epistasis, and GxEinteractions. After UIUC, Matthew intends to pursue a data science position in industry with a quantitative genetics focus. Outside of science, Matthew enjoys running, weight-lifting, hiking(ask him about Colorado), photography (ask him about Yellowstone National Park), and cooking.

Treasurer: Akash Datta

Akash Datta is the treasurer of Crop Sciences Graduate Student Organization (CSGO) for 2022-23. Previously, Akash has worked as Assistant Secretary for Fellows’ Association at the International Rice Research Organization. Akash is a first year Ph.D. student in the Sacks Lab at the Department of Crop Sciences. The research interest of Akash is focusing on gene discovery and varietal development in direct seeded rice for better germination and emergence through functional genomics and molecular plant breeding. Akash further intends to work more on plant functional genomics and synthetic biology for crop yield improvement. Apart from research, Akash is involved in jiu-jitsu, hiking, kick-boxing, swimming and exploring diverse food cuisines.

Social co-chair and Media chair: Raysa Gevartosky

Raysa Gevartosky is the media chair and one of the social co-chairs. She is a second-year Ph.D. student focusing on Plant Breeding in the Small Grains group under Dr. Jessica Rutkoski. Her research focuses on developing more efficient yield testing and selection methods that leverage high-throughput phenotyping and genomic prediction. In her free time, Raysa loves watching and playing sports, outdoor activities and enjoying a good coffee (AM) and a good beer (PM).

Social co-chair: Jeremy Logrono

Jeremy Logrono is one of the social co-chairs and a second-year Ph.D. student focusing on Plant Breeding in the Small Grains Improvement lab under Dr. Jessica Rutkoski. His main research focus is developing and implementing a rapid variety development process to generate a set of soft red winter wheat varieties with unique quality traits for high-value markets. In his free time, Jeremy enjoys mountain biking, hiking, and exploring different ethnic cuisines.

Networking chair and webmaster: Lucas Berger Munaro

Lucas is the CSGO networking chair and webmaster. He is a second-year Ph.D. student in the UIUC Small Grains improvement group under Dr. Jessica Rutkoski. His research focuses on developing more efficient breeding methods for winter wheat profitability in a wheat-soybean double-crop system. Besides science, Lucas enjoys camping, fishing, BBQ, and a good beer.

Student Ambassador / General Board Member: Anup Dhakal

Anup Dhakal is an Ambassador/General Board Member of CSGO. He is a graduate student in the Small Grains Lab under the supervision of Dr. Juan Arbelaez at the Department of Crop Sciences. His research focuses on improving the nutritional value and milling quality of oats through phenomics and genomics. He believes that CSGO provides an opportunity an excellent opportunity to network with fellow graduate students. Aside from CSGO, he also serves on the UIUC Corteva Plant Science Symposium’s External Outreach Committee this year. Out of academics, he enjoys cooking and playing soccer.