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For Immediate Release
December 6, 2000
Release #CDFA00-066
Contact: Steve Lyle
Jay Van Rein
Larry Cooper

27-Year CDFA Veteran Appointed by Governor

SACRAMENTO-Governor Gray Davis has appointed veteran California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) executive Robert L. Wynn, Jr. to the position of Statewide Coordinator for the glassy-winged sharpshooter/Pierce's disease control program.

Wynn had been serving as interim coordinator for the program, which was initiated by Governor Davis after research scientists and CDFA learned of serious damage done by sharpshooters to Riverside County's wine grape industry.

Wynn began his 27-year career with CDFA as a Quality Control Inspector. Over the years, he rose through the ranks to become Director of Inspection Services in 1990, and was named Director of Plant Health and Pest Prevention Services in 1997.

"I want to congratulate Bob on his appointment," said CDFA Secretary William (Bill) J. Lyons, Jr. "This assignment has one of the highest profiles in the state right now. I can't think of a better choice. Bob has my complete confidence."

Leaders in the agriculture industry are also praising Wynn. "As interim program coordinator, Mr. Wynn has demonstrated exemplary talent, leadership and dedication," said John A. De Luca, President and C.E.O. of the Wine Institute, which represents more than 90 percent of California's wine production. Grape growers agree on Wynn's abilities. "I have seen first hand the organization and tenacity with which he has attacked this problem," said Nat DiBuduo, President of the Allied Grape Growers, which represents about 550 California growers. And the nursery industry, which has seen major changes in the way it does business in the wake of the sharpshooter threat, also has confidence in Wynn's leadership. "Mr. Wynn has always been very accessible, fair and straightforward in his dealings with our organization and industry," said Robert H. Falconer of the California Association of Nurserymen.

Under the leadership of Governor Davis, Wynn is administering a $36 million program funded by both state and federal sources. So far, CDFA staff has worked to measure and map glassy-winged sharpshooter infestations, manage ground treatment efforts in several counties, and develop a bio-control program featuring a parasitic wasp that has been introduced in limited numbers. The goal of the overall program is to combat the spread of the glassy-winged sharpshooter and Pierce's disease while funding research aimed at finding a cure for the disease.

For more information about the glassy-winged sharpshooter and Pierce's disease, click on CDFA's web page at

California Department of Food and Agriculture
1220 N Street, Suite 100, Sacramento, California  95814