Ph.D. Candidate Brie Berry Awarded the 2019 Edith Patch Award for Distinguished Work

Brieanne Berry, Ph.D. candidate in the Department of Anthropology and member of the Mitchell Center’s Materials Management research team, has been awarded the 2019 Edith Patch Award for a doctoral student.

Brie Berry. Photo by Alan Berry.

The Edith Patch Award is given by the Friends of Dr. Edith Marion Patch each year to graduate and undergraduate women in acknowledgement of distinguished work they have done while at the University of Maine, and in recognition of their promise for future contribution to the fields of science, agriculture, engineering, or environmental education.

Says Cindy Isenhour, associate professor of Anthropology, faculty associate with the Mitchell Center and Berry’s advisor, “With the endorsement of the entire Materials Management team, we chose to nominate Brie because she exemplifies Dr. Patch’s passion for the environment and sustainability—through her leadership, scholarship, teaching, and her service to both the campus and the state.”

Dr. Patch (1876 – 1954) was the first woman scientist employed by the University of Maine. After working for a year without salary to prove that a woman could do the job, she went on to earn international professional renown for her work as an agricultural entomologist. In addition to her prolific scientific output, she was respected and revered worldwide for her numerous engaging and informative writings about natural history.

She was one of America’s earliest environmental advocates, calling for reduction in chemical pesticide use, a generation before Rachel Carson. She was also a national leader in the earliest days of environmental education. The Friends of Dr. Edith Marion Patch is a University of Maine affiliated nonprofit organization working to honor the legacy of this eminent Maine woman.

As a 2019 recipient Brie will be recognized for her research and work at an Earth Day reception.

Notes Berry, “I’m so honored to be a recipient of the Edith Patch Award. None of my work would be possible without the incredible support and mentorship I’ve received from faculty and staff across campus, but particularly within the Mitchell Center.”

—David Sims