2022 Award of Distinction Recipients

The College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences (CA&ES) at UC Davis is known throughout the world for its expertise, educational opportunities, and contributions to society. Much of that is due to the great dedication and efforts of our faculty, staff, students, alumni and friends of the college.

Each year CA&ES recognizes individuals for their achievements, support, leadership and service to the college with an Award of Distinction honoring those contributions.

Some of the 2022 winners have mapped the honey bee genome and introduced American table grapes to China. Others are considered a top agricultural policy analyst, a go-to fiscal expert and a prolific donor and supporter of the R.M. Bohart Museum of Entomology.

Alumnus of the Year

Marko B. Zaninovich

Marko Zaninovich
Marko Zaninovich

It’s hard to talk about California agriculture and not mention Marko Zaninovich, the CEO of Sunview Vineyards and a UC Davis graduate, who has been a leader in the table grape industry and is one of the longest and strongest supporters of the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.

Zaninovich, who was the first to introduce American table grapes to the lucrative Chinese market, is being honored among alumni with a CA&ES Award of Distinction.

He graduated from UC Davis in 1964 with a degree in fermentation science and took over his family’s farming business two years later when his father died unexpectedly.

That role as president and general manager set the stage for a lifetime of leadership in the table grape industry. He also set his sights on wine, forming ASV Wines in 1982 and buying Rutherford Wine Company in 2002.

Zaninovich is a past chairman of the California Table Grape Commission, where he served for 30 years. He also served on the California Aggie Alumni Association board of directors, the UC Davis Foundation and the Executive Leadership Board for the Department of Viticulture and Enology.

“Throughout his career Marko has been a visionary and pioneer in all aspects of the table grape industry, always eager to develop new production and post-harvest practices and to expand his company’s and California’s marketing opportunities.”

 – Michael Campbell, former director, UC Davis Seed Biotechnology Center

Distinguished Friend of the College

Bill Patterson

Bill Patterson
Bill Patterson

William “Bill” Patterson’s dedication to the R.M. Bohart Museum of Entomology at UC Davis spans several decades. He has been a professor’s technician, volunteer and donor – of both the financial and specimen kind – and is being honored as a friend of the college with a CA&ES Award of Distinction.

Patterson, a retired math and science substitute teacher, has been an avid butterfly and moth collector for much of his life. Those interests led to a degree in entomology from University of Arizona and eventually as a graduate student in entomology at UC Davis.

He has volunteered at the museum for nearly 30 years and donated 15,000 specimens, with plans to give the rest of his nearly 40,000-item collection to the Bohart Museum.

Earlier this year, Patterson and his wife, Doris Brown, gave $1 million to the museum to help maintain the permanent insect collection, which has almost 8 million specimens.

“Over the past 15 years, Bill has donated more than 15,000 specimens from his personal collection of butterflies… His specimens and financial contributions have made a big difference in museum operations and in support of curation and outreach programs.”

 – Lynn Kimsey, director, R.M. Bohart Museum of Entomology 

Exceptional Faculty Award

Daniel A. Sumner

Daniel Sumner
Daniel Sumner

Growing up on the family farm in Suisun Valley and joining 4-H and Future Farmers of America gave Daniel A. Sumner an early taste of the economics of California agriculture.

Since 1993, Sumner has been the Frank H. Buck Jr. Professor in the Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics. He also served as director of the UC Agricultural Issues Center and is now director of the UC Giannini Foundation for Agricultural Economics. With his breadth of experience studying California and global agriculture, he’s known by peers as one of the top agricultural policy scholars and analysts in the world.

He is being honored among faculty with a CA&ES Award of Distinction.

Sumner teaches and conducts research on the economics of agriculture, food and related markets, including recently cannabis. In 2022 he co-authored with Robin Goldstein a book titled, “Can Legal Weed Win?: The Blunt Realities of Cannabis Economics.”

Before joining UC Davis faculty, Sumner served as assistant secretary for economics with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and was a senior economist for the President’s Council of Economic Advisers.

“He is fearless in presenting his conclusions based on his deep understanding of the realities of agriculture and the combination of policy, business operations, markets and finances.”

– Secretary Karen Ross, California Department of Food and Agriculture

Exceptional Staff Award

Shannon Tanguay

Shannon Tanguay
Shannon Tanguay

Shannon Tanguay, budget director with the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, is the go-to expert to break down complex fiscal issues, support colleagues, serve on key committees and train others on important systems. 

She is being honored among staff with a CA&ES Award of Distinction.

Tanguay, who has worked at UC Davis since 1999, has a unique blend of talents and experience, allowing her to manage varied funding streams while understanding the academic environment.

She is an excellent teacher and leads monthly Financial Services Group meetings that can attract upwards of 100 people from CA&ES and other parts of campus. Tanguay played an integral role in the implementation of UCPath by serving on user groups, testing the system and training others, and her contributions improved the quality of the user experience. Tanguay is similarly helping with the 2023 launch of the university’s new financial system, Aggie Enterprise (AE), and her collaborative approach to solving problems is respected by members of the AE team.

She is kind, patient, always willing to help despite a full workload and deeply committed to any project she takes on.

“She cares greatly about her team, about the college, and about those she supports in the departments. Shannon epitomizes exceptional service on so many levels, and she takes pride in supporting others.”

– Jennifer Radke, chief administrative officer for BFTV cluster (departments of Biological and Agricultural Engineering, Food Science and Technology, and Viticulture and Enology)

Exceptional Emeriti

Robert E. Page Jr.

Robert Page
Robert E. Page Jr.

Robert E. Page Jr. was the first to map the honey bee genome and is considered one of the most important entomologists of the 21st century. During his career, he published more than 250 research papers, maintained a honey bee breeding program for decades and mentored dozens of students, postdoctoral fellows and faculty.

He is being honored among emeriti with a CA&ES Award of Distinction.

Page earned his Ph.D. in entomology from UC Davis in 1980 and went on to work in Wisconsin and Ohio. He joined the UC Davis faculty in 1989 as an associate professor in the Department of Entomology and Nematology. He served as department chair from 1999 to 2004, when he retired from UC Davis. He went on to Arizona State University where he was founding director of the School of Life Sciences, then a dean and finally provost.

He also trained dozens of beekeepers and made significant advancements in mapping parasitic wasps, bumble bees and two species of ants.

Page has served as a fellow of the Entomological Society of America and the California Academy of Science.

Dr. Page is a pioneering researcher in the field of evolutional genetics and social behavior of honeybees and a highly respected and quoted author, teacher and former administrator.”

 – Steve Nadler, professor and chair, Department of Entomology and Nematology