August 24, 2015 | By: Katie Pratt
Lexington, Ky.

Joe Collins, senior nursery inspector for the Kentucky Office of the State Entomologist, was recently named president of the National Plant Board.

The board is comprised of representatives from plant pest regulatory agencies in each state, plus Puerto Rico and Guam.

Board members work with several agencies including the National Association of State Departments of Agriculture, the U.S. Forest Service, the U.S. Department of Agriculture Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service and the USDA Agriculture Research Service to prevent new pests and diseases from entering the United States on imported plants.

Collins, a longtime employee of the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment, has served on several committees within the board prior to being named president of the organization in August.

UK’s team of nursery inspectors addresses new pests and diseases that could enter the state as well as quarantine issues. One of the most recent quarantines involved the emerald ash borer and the restrictions on moving items associated with this pest, such as firewood.

As board president, Collins will be the point person for distributing information to states and territories if a new insect pest or disease is found on plants and will work closely with USDA APHIS’s Plant Protection and Quarantine program. He will also represent the organization in the North American Plant Protection Organization and the North American State Departments of Agriculture. He is a member of the National Plant Board’s executive team and board of directors.

Collins will serve two years as board president, followed by two years as past president.

Contact: 

Joe Collins, 859-218-3341

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