With a career spanning more than four decades with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Agency for International Agricultural Development (USAID), Dana Dalrymple is both a product of and proponent for the Land-Grant Mission, whose work documented the economics of agricultural science as a public good.
While an undergrad, an agricultural geography course taught by the late professor Herrell DeGraff opened Dalrymple’s eyes to the field that would become a source of lifelong fascination for him: combining biology with policy and economics, with an international focus. He started his career in extension at the county, state and federal levels and was a senior science adviser and agricultural economist with the USDA on detail to USAID for international work from 1972 until his 2008 retirement. An expert in Soviet agriculture, the adoption of high-yielding green revolution crop varieties, and the impact of international agricultural research, in retirement he completed a book on science, tradition and public policy with regard to Artemisia, a medicinal plant used in Africa for treating malaria.
With his late wife, Helen, Dalrymple was a cofounder and later co-president of the Friends of the Palisades Library in Washington, D.C. Dalrymple has participated in the Class of ’54 alumni organization and the Alpha Zeta agricultural fraternity. Dozens of members of his extended family have attended Cornell, including his father, Daniel Dalrymple ’27, who was given an outstanding alumni award in 1985. He lives in Washington, D.C., and is father to sons Daniel and William Dalrymple ’97 and grandfather of three.