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Dr. Tiffany Wolf awarded McKnight Land-Grant Professorship

  • Tiffany Wolf stands in the jungle

    Dr. Tiffany Wolf awarded McKnight Land-Grant Professorship

    The award recognizes significant contributions to the recipient's field of work.

College of Veterinary Medicine faculty member Dr. Tiffany Wolf has earned a prestigious 2023-2025 McKnight Land-Grant Professorship. 

Conferred by the University of Minnesota Office of the Vice Provost for Faculty and Academic Affairs, the award recognizes highly promising junior faculty members making significant contributions to their field. In support of their scholarship and research activity, McKnight Land-Grant professors receive $50,000 during the two-year award period.

Dr. Tiffany Wolf

Wolf is an assistant professor in the College’s Department of Veterinary Population Medicine. Her research program embodies the spirit of the McKnight Land-Grant Professorship by using her background in zoo and wildlife health and expertise in epidemiology to tackle today’s grand challenges in ecosystem health. 

Addressing disease transmission between wildlife and humans, Wolf is particularly interested in situations where food safety and security overlap with fundamental cultural beliefs surrounding wildlife. Her current research projects include: conserving Minnesota’s moose population; controlling chronic wasting disease (CWD) in cervids such as deer, moose, and elk, and; understanding emerging zoonotic diseases in the Amazon. 

Describing her research philosophy, Wolf explains that a “community-engaged approach” to her research is the most “just approach to supporting our communities while also enhancing the rigor of our science to benefit our global community.” 

Drs. Tiffany Wolf (right) and Luciano
Caixeta attend the McKnight Awards

Minnesota Tribal Nations are key partners in Wolf’s work. As part of that effort, she meets regularly with tribal natural resource managers and community partners to ensure the research aligns with tribal needs and values. Results from her collaborative work with the Grand Portage Band of Lake Superior Chippewa biologists have been integrated into predator and moose management decisions. 

An infectious disease expert and former colleague, Srinand Sreevatsan, MVSC, MPH, PhD, associate dean for research and graduate studies at Michigan State University, notes Wolf’s “work on tuberculosis [in primates] has been extensively used by wildlife biologists and biomedical scientists around the world.” 

Crediting Wolf’s significant contributions to CWD, Sreevatsan says her contributions to the causative agent of CWD have enabled investigators to improve diagnostics and develop science-based mitigation for diseases of wildlife.

Wolf’s McKnight Land-Grant Professorships award follows her receipt of the University’s 2021 President’s Community-Engaged Scholar Award.

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