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K-State Research and Extension
123 Umberger Hall
Manhattan, KS 66506-3401

August 11, 2020

K-State’s Shoemaker Named Fellow by American Society for Horticultural Science

Submitted by Pat Melgares

Candace Shoemaker

The American Society for Horticultural Science has selected Kansas State University professor Candice Shoemaker as one of five fellows in 2020.

The honor is the highest ASHA can bestow on its members, and selection is based on a person’s contributions in horticultural research, extension and education. Approximately 500 people have been named fellows since 1965.

Shoemaker and the other newly elected fellows were recognized on August 10 during the ASHS annual conference awards ceremony and business meeting, which is being held online this year from August 9-13.

“I am very honored and humbled to be elected an ASHA Fellow,” said Shoemaker. “It’s something I’ve hoped for but never expected – there are so many outstanding people in this field. But, becoming a fellow has been an important career goal of mine for a long time.”

Shoemaker’s research investigates the physical and psychological health benefits of gardening, focusing on children and older adults, and the community benefits of urban agriculture.

“Dr. Shoemaker is a true pioneer in the field of horticulture therapy,” said Ernie Minton, dean of the Kansas State University College of Agriculture and director for K-State Research and Extension. “We’re proud of her many contributions to the field of horticulture, her students and the communities she serves. She is very deserving of this outstanding honor.”

After receiving a bachelor’s degree from Michigan State University in floriculture in 1978, Shoemaker worked in production greenhouse businesses in Washington and Michigan for three years. She earned a master’s degree in horticultural therapy from Kansas State University in 1982 and doctoral degree in environmental floriculture physiology from Michigan State in 1990.

Before returning to Kansas State University as a faculty member in 2001, Shoemaker completed a post-doctoral research fellowship at Virginia Tech University, held a teaching position in ornamental horticulture at Berry College in Rome, GA, and was the first Director of the School of the Chicago Botanic Garden.

In her time at K-State she developed and directed the award-winning online graduate certificate program in horticultural therapy and was one of the founders of the successful master’s program in urban food systems.

She was department head from 2014 to 2018, during which she led the departmental name change to the Department of Horticulture and Natural Resources, facilitated a remodel of the Throckmorton student lounge that includes the first living wall on campus, created a new high-tech classroom, hired four new faculty, and saw a substantial increase in graduate student numbers and a five-fold increase in external funding.

Shoemaker is currently special assistant to the dean of the College of Agriculture working on strategic initiatives for the college. These initiatives include the Urban Food Systems Initiative, the Agricultural Veterans Education (SAVE) Farm, and a rural prosperity through food production initiative. As a professor of horticulture, she teaches, mentors graduate students and conducts research in support of the Urban Food Systems graduate program.