Lifting Society to Greater Heights

The Charles Valentine Riley Memorial Foundation (RMF) is committed to promote a broader and more complete understanding of agriculture and to build upon Charles Valentine Riley’s legacy as a “whole picture” person with a vision for enhancing agriculture through scientific knowledge. RMF, founded in 1985, recognized that agriculture is the most basic human endeavor and that a vibrant, robust, food, agricultural, forestry, and environmental-resource system is essential for human progress and world peace.

RMF is involved in a range of program activities “to promote a broader and more complete understanding of agriculture as the most basic human endeavor and to enhance agriculture through increased scientific knowledge.” Sponsors provide the general support that makes it possible for RMF to collaborate with a number of others with common interests. RMF greatly acknowledges these sponsors for 2013:

American Farm Bureau Federation
Association of Land Grant and Public       Universities
Bayer CropScience
CropLife America
Southwest Council for Agribusiness
Farm Foundation NFP
American Society of Agronomy
Crop Science Society of America
Institute of Food Technologists
Soil Science Society of America
Soil and Water Conservation Society

R&D Round Table. RMF joined with the Farm Foundation NPF and five scientific societies in 2011 to organize the Agriculture, Food, Nutrition, and Natural Resource R&D Round Table: Research Partnerships Yield Greater Societal Returns. Presentation of exemplary cases of collaboration among different segments of the public sector were integrated with presentations by top level science administrators. Summary and proceedings link here.

Research Needs and Collaborations. RMF prepared a position paper in 2012 entitled “Agriculture, Food, and Natural Resources Research: Collaborations Yield Greater Societal Returns” for consideration by the President’s Council of Advisors for Science and Technology Working Group on Agricultural Preparedness. The paper reviews the value of and need for research, provides examples of collaborations between the public and private sectors, and highlights the possible collaborative role of foundations. Paper here.

Riley Lectures. RMF collaborates with the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and the World Food Prize Foundation to present an annual Charles Valentine Riley Memorial Lecture in Washington, DC. The 2012 AAAS Riley Lecture was presented by Rob Horsch, Deputy Director for Research & Development, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, on June 14 in Washington, DC. Proceedings here. The 2011 Lecture was presented by Pamela C. Roland, Professor of Plant Pathology, University of California, Davis, on “Tomorrow’s Table: Organic Farming, Genetics and the Future of Food”. Proceedings here. The 2010 Lecture was presented by Roger Beachy, then Director of USDA’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture, on “Agricultural Research: Changing of the Guard, Guarding the Change.” Proceedings here.

Charles Valentine Riley

The 2013 AAAS Riley Lecture and Reception was held on June 25, at the AAAS headquarters in Washington, DC. The lecture on "Food, Feed and Fuel from Crops under Global Atmospheric Change: Could we have it all in 2030? " was presented by Dr. Stephen P. Long, Gutgesell Endowed University Professor of Plant Biology and Crop Sciences University of Illinois, and was followed by a distinguished response panel representing agricultural production, agribusiness, and other research interests. The proceedings for the lecture are now available on line at