Science & Technology

USU Biologist Michelle Baker Receives Pioneers of Progress Award

Michelle Baker, USU professor of biology, recognized as 2017 Pioneer of Progress. Credit: Donna Barry/Utah State University

Utah State University professor of Biology, Michelle Baker, who leads water research efforts in the state as the project director of iUTAH, was recognized for her pioneering efforts in science and technology.

Baker, an associate of the Ecology Center at USU, is one of six Utahns honored “who perpetuate a legacy of industry and integrity.” Candidates are nominated by fellow Utah citizens, and selected by a committee, for their contributions to science and technology, business, education, creative arts and civic engagement.

Baker says that her “life’s mission is to understand and protect healthy freshwater ecosystems,” and adds that “through collaboration and working as a team that we can make some big progress for water in Utah.”

USTAR Executive Director Ivy Estabrook nominated Baker, and has this to say about her work, “she has been able to pull a team together from multiple institutions. She has trained students… and has done this in a team setting.”

“Part of our mission has been to engage kids from kindergarten all the way up through graduate school,” says Baker. “We’ve had almost 300,000 interactions with the public through outreach events.”

As director of iUTAH EPSCoR, a multi-institutional project integrating research, training, and education, Baker will continue to lead the effort to strengthening science for Utah’s water future until the project ends in July 2018.

Other recipients of the Days of ’47 Pioneers of Progress award in 2017 include Dell Loy Hansen, Kathleen Christy, Susan Memmott Allred, Donald Evan Moss and Robert D. Hales.

Related links:
iUTAH website 
2017 Pioneers of Progress Awards 

Writer: Jeannine Huenemann, 435-797-0984,

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