Dr. Robert Waltz, seed commissioner with the Office of the Indiana State Chemist (retired), received the NASDA Ambassador’s Circle Award on September 1 during the 2020 NASDA Annual Meeting. Also receiving this award in 2020 is US Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue.
The Ambassador’s Circle Award recognizes dedication and distinguished service in support of NASDA. Waltz says NASDA has been a big part of his professional life since the early 1990s, when he began attending on occasion in association with the National Plant Board System, where he worked primarily on communicating pest issues in the central United States and invasive species nationally.
Waltz served as the key link from AAFCO to NASDA from 2008 to 2019, supporting the following NASDA projects:
- NASDA Preventive Controls for Animal Food steering and implementation groups, which he co-chaired with Bob Ehart, 2017 to 2019;
- NASDA FDA grant to prepare national state implementation plan, December 2016 to 2018; and
- NASDA Technical Working Group, FDA Produce Safety Rule Implementation, Chapter 1–text draft initiator, NASDA Produce Safety Implementation Strategy for the States beginning in 2015.
In his 14 years with AAFCO, Waltz served as AAFCO president, board member, committee chair, and liaison to multiple external organizations. He represented AAFCO as a very active member of the Partnership for Food Protection, Association of American Plant Food Control Officials, and Food Safety Preventive Controls Alliance. His thoughtful and regulatory-oriented contributions went well above and beyond normal volunteer service. Waltz truly exemplifies the meaning of service in support of an organization.
Through his involvement and leadership, his efforts have positively served to advance agriculture in the states and territories. AAFCO supported Waltz for this award to recognize his contributions to NASDA and to the business of agriculture.