Alumni, Honorees and Faculty Celebrate Stocking Hall Dedication

 By Matt Hayes

Kathryn Boor speaking to audience
Kathryn J. Boor, the Ronald P. Lynch Dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, speaks Oct. 22 at a ceremony celebrating the upgrades to Stocking Hall. Credit: Jason Koski/University Photography

Following a four-year project to modernize facilities at Stocking Hall, the Department of Food Science toasted its freshly renovated home with milk, cider, ice cream and New York wine.

The Oct. 22 ceremony officially introduced the state-of-the art building, culminating a project supported by $105 million from the State University Construction Fund along with alumni and corporate donations and Cornell funds. The project—which broke ground in 2011—modernized classrooms and installed cutting-edge research and teaching laboratories in a building constructed in 1923.

Kathryn J. Boor, the Ronald P. Lynch Dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, said the refurbished facilities will pay dividends for generations as Cornell continues its role as a global leader in food safety and innovation.

Group shot of donors
Several donors to the Food Science Faculty Classroom after the rededication of Stocking Hall: (left to right) Professor of Nutritional Sciences Christine Olson, Professor Dennis Miller, Professor Syed S.H. Rizvi, Professor Randy W. Worobo, Dean Kathryn J. Boor, retired Senior Lecturer Janice M. Brown, Professor Rui Hai Liu, Professor Martin Wiedmann, Professor Chang Yong Lee, Professor and Department Chair Olga I. Padilla-Zakour, and John Zakour. Photo: Jason Koski/University Photography

“This renovated Stocking Hall represents an extraordinary investment by New York state and Cornell University in the future of research, teaching and extension support for our state’s food and beverage industries,” Boor said to more than 200 honorees, faculty and stakeholders at the ceremony.

When Boor first interviewed for her Cornell faculty position in 1993, she was told a Stocking Hall renovation was “right around the corner.”

Now as dean, she said she has witnessed the entire process for an upgrade of this scale. New and expanded facilities for students include a wine library—a collection of reference wines used in teaching—and a student winery. The glass-fronted dairy plant has expanded Cornell’s role in training dairy and food inspectors, and a pilot facility has forged collaboration with public and private enterprise for food and dairy entrepreneurs.

“We take great pride in educating our students to be the next generation of leaders in food science, and now we finally have the facilities that match the excellent quality of our programs,” said Olga I. Padilla-Zakour, professor of food processing and department chair.

One room in particular is a testament to this passion for teaching: room 201, officially designated the Food Science Faculty Classroom. Dennis Miller, professor of food science, led the initiative to raise funds among current and former faculty—many of whom are also alumni—to name the classroom in Stocking West.

Donors included Professor Terry E. Acree, M.S. ’66, Ph.D. ’68; Dean Boor ’80; retired Senior Lecturer Janice M. Brown ’78, in memory of the late Senior Extension Associate Emeritus David P. Brown ’69, M.S. ’72; Professor Chang Yong Lee; Professor Rui Hai Liu, Ph.D. ’93; Professor Dennis Miller, Ph.D. ’78; Professor Olga I. Padilla-Zakour, M.S. ’88, Ph.D. ’91, and John Zakour; Professor Emeritus M. Anandha Rao and Janet S. Rao; Professor Syed S.H. Rizvi; Ruth Sherbon, MAT ’68, in memory of Professor Emeritus John Sherbon; Cedric Ahn ’13, MPS ’14, Mike Ahn ’69, MEN ’71, MRP ’73, and Suzanne Ahn ’73, in memory of Professor Emeritus W. Frank Shipe Jr., Ph.D. ’49; Professor Martin Wiedmann, Ph.D. ’97; and Professor Randy W. Worobo.