Behring receives 2017 Achieving Women Award

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Deanna Behring, assistant dean and director of international programs for the College of Agricultural Sciences, is the 2017 recipient of the Commission for Women's Achieving Women Award in the administrator category.

Behring was named assistant dean of international programs for the College of Agricultural Sciences effective January 2017. Prior to this appointment, she had served as the director of international programs for the college since 2000, establishing and growing an inclusive, broad-based international program portfolio across disciplines and the college's missions.

In addition to growing offerings, funding and enrollment for international programs in the college, Behring has been a leader in establishing the college's Gender in Agriculture, Energy and Environment Initiative, a network of interdisciplinary scholars and researchers that initiate and respond to new opportunities for research, instruction and evidence-based outreach that address the intersections of gender with agricultural and environmental sciences.

Also notable among her achievements is the creation of a dial-title graduate degree program, international agriculture and development.

"I am truly honored to be one of the individuals recognized with the Achieving Women Award," Behring said. "I would like to thank the commission for years of dedication and service working for women’s empowerment, diversity, and new and creative ways to accomplish a better life for our communities; to my colleagues in the office of International Programs for the nomination and for their hard work; and to my family and friends, particularly my two wonderful daughters, for their support and inspiration."

The Commission for Women's Achieving Women Award recognizes Penn State women who have shown notable leadership and accomplishment in their fields, and have gone beyond the requirements of employment duties and responsibilities in their support of the University's diversity efforts, promotion of equal opportunity or contribution to human causes and public-service activities.

Eligible women are current employees and students of Penn State. One award is typically given per category of faculty, staff exempt, staff nonexempt, administrator, technical service, undergraduate student and graduate student (which includes postdoctoral fellows and scholars).

"In addition to her academic and institutional achievements, Dr. Behring's dedication to mentorship is equally impressive," said Paige Castellanos, research associate in the college's Office of International Programs. "She is the rare person who combines vision and interpersonal skills to get faculty, staff and students to buy in across disciplines and actualize great ideas."

During her career, Behring has served with the U.S. Agency for International Development in upgrading primary health care to promote maternal and child health in Asia, Africa and Latin America; analyzed international trade and finance issues for the Central Intelligence Agency; worked in the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy and for the National Security Council; served as international consultant to the Under Secretary for Technology at the U.S. Department of Commerce; and chaired the International Agriculture Section of the Association of Public and Land-Grant Universities.

Behring received her doctoral degree in communication arts and sciences from Penn State, a master's degree in international economic development from Ohio University, and a bachelor's degree in economics from Albion College.

The Commission for Women is a part of the Office of Educational Equity and serves as an advisory group to the President of the University on the status of women at Penn State, advocates for women's concerns and recommends solutions. Undergraduate students, graduate students, faculty, staff and administrators are all eligible to join the commission.

Last Updated April 18, 2017