From Plant Press, Vol. 18, No. 4, October 2015.
The American Society of Plant Taxonomists (ASPT) awarded John H. Wiersema the 2015 Peter Raven Award. Wiersema, a Research Associate at Smithsonian’s Department of Botany, is a botanist of the National Germplasm Resource Laboratory, U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agriculture Research Service (USDA-ARS), The award is named for Peter Raven, eminent botanist and President Emeritus of the Missouri Botanical Garden, who has made significant contributions to research, education and outreach in botanical sciences throughout his esteemed career.
Wiersema has greatly served the plant systematics and broader plant biology communities during a long, productive career that includes over 25 years of service to the U.S. government. Fellow scientists working for museums and governmental organizations in four countries wrote in strong support of his nomination, highlighting the various roles he has played supporting international botanical research. In his current position with USDA-ARS, Wiersema has been principally responsible for the development and oversight of the Germplasm Resources Information Network (GRIN) website, <http://www.ars-grin.gov/>, a worldwide resource for taxonomic and nomenclatural information about cultivated, weedy, and economically important plants.