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Historic Partnership Bears Fruit

As Dean of the College of Agricultural, Human, and Natural Resource Sciences, I’ve had the opportunity to see much of Washington state’s bounty firsthand.

Over the past year, I’ve toured orchards and packing houses, met with scientists and growers, and tasted the fruits of their hard work.

This September, I helped dedicate the original mother tree of the apple now called Cosmic Crisp®, which holds wonderful promise for Washington. Days later, I assisted in the centennial celebration at our Irrigated Agricultural Research and Extension Center at Prosser, birthplace of another important WSU-developed fruit—the Rainier cherry.

Neither one of these industry-changing varieties would have come to light without the vital partnership between the state’s growers and our land-grant university.

This year, WSU’s largest ever gift, the Tree Fruit Endowment, will meet an important milestone. The special project assessment that has been fueling the historic endowment is expected to be complete this year.

While the endowment is just coming into its own, it is already helping WSU scientists make great strides, supporting research programs, outreach, and improvements that put ideas and tools in your hands.

Your support has allowed us to deliver on innovative practices with multi-million-dollar economic potential for Northwest orchards.

It has brought scientists to WSU who are working to reveal the factors that affect fruit quality before and after harvest, ensuring our best products reach consumers.

André-Denis Wright standing in front of Cosmic Crisp apple tree.

None of this would be possible without your support. WSU and Washington state are the envy of institutions the world over because of our unique relationship with growers, a partnership that brings resources and collaboration that turn discovery into applicable knowledge and fruitful practices.

As a steward of this gift, I thank you once again for your support and involvement. Together, we are leading the nation in discoveries that enhance tree fruit quality, security, and profitability.

André-Denis Wright, CAHNRS Dean