Crop Development Centre Professor and Director Dr. Curtis Pozniak (PhD)  (photo: submitted)
Crop Development Centre Professor and Director Dr. Curtis Pozniak (PhD) (photo: submitted)

CDC Professor and Director awarded prestigious Queen Elizabeth II Platinum Jubilee Medal

As a highly successful wheat breeder with the Crop Development Centre for almost two decades, Dr. Curtis Pozniak (PhD) was awarded a Queen Elizabeth II Platinum Jubilee Medal (Saskatchewan) on December 14, 2022, marking the celebrations of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II’s 70th anniversary on the throne and honoring an individual’s significant contribution and achievement to Canada.

Pozniak joined the University of Saskatchewan (USask) in 2003, quickly advancing through the university tenure system from associate professor in 2009 and full professor in 2014.  He leads the Durum and High -Yield Breeding and Genetics program as the Ministry of Agriculture Strategic Research Program (SRP) Chair and is currently the Director of the Crop Development Centre.

Pozniak is the author of three book chapters relating to wheat development and genetics, and 118 refereed journal publications.  He has bred or co-bred 23 durum and high yielding wheat varieties and has supervised or co-supervised over 40 graduate students, many who continue to be leaders in the agriculture sector.

Pozniak’ s contributions to the agriculture industry have not gone unnoticed. He was the co-lead scientist on the consortium of international researchers that decoded the genome sequence of wheat.  This multi-year project provided the necessary tools needed by wheat breeders to accelerate wheat variety development.  In 2019 he was awarded an Outstanding Leadership Award by the International Wheat Genome Sequencing Consortium for his leadership during the project, and in 2014 was presented an Award of Innovation by the Saskatoon Achievement in Business Excellence (SABEX).

In 2019, Pozniak was awarded an International Conference Tourism Award from Tourism Saskatchewan/City of Saskatoon for bringing over 800 international delegates to Saskatoon during the 1st International Wheat Conference.  He was the recipient of a University of Saskatchewan, College of Agriculture and Resources Young Researcher award in 2010 and the Award for Research Excellence in 2014.

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