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2014 Outstanding Recent Alumnus

Justin B. Runyon ’08 Ph.D. Entomology

Runyon, who earned a doctorate in entomology from Penn State in 2008, is a research entomologist with the U.S. Forest Service's Rocky Mountain Research Station in Bozeman, Montana.

His research focuses on how chemistry mediates interactions between plants and herbivores. He has published more than 30 papers in peer-reviewed journals, including Science, and his research has been featured extensively in the popular press, including the New York Times, the BBC and National Public Radio.

Runyon recently received the Presidential Early Career Award for Science and Engineering, the highest honor bestowed by the U.S. government on science and engineering professionals in their early careers.

He has received several other accolades in his short career. He was recipient of the Forest Service Deputy Chief's Early Career Scientist Award in 2012 and was elected this year as a Kavli fellow by members of the U.S. National Academy of Sciences.

While at Penn State, Runyon participated in numerous outreach programs, including the Great Insect Fair, the Eberly College of Science Action Potential Science Experience for students in grades 4-8, the Women in the Sciences and Engineering Institute Summer Camp, and the Pennsylvania Governor's School for the Agricultural Sciences.

A life member of the Penn State Alumni Association, he also served as president of the Friends of the Frost Entomological Museum.

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