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Spotlight on Faculty Scholarship

FS-grebenok-spotlight-imageRobert Grebenok, PhD, professor of biology, is a higher plant biochemist and plant physiologist at Canisius who studies how higher plants protect themselves against insect predation. Dr. Grebenok focuses on sterol use in plant-eating (herbivorous) insects. He is one of few chemical ecologists, worldwide, who examines the role that sterol nutrition plays on herbivorous insect community dynamics. Specifically, he analyzes the chemical composition and chemical change of crop plants in an attempt to identify gut proteins that herbivorous insects use to take up particular sterol structures from their food. This work can help find ways to assist plants in stopping the function of these proteins. During the last 25 years, this form of research has provided additional protection for plants from insect attack beyond the traditional chemical pesticides. Through his research, Dr. Grebenok hopes to find additional ways to assist plants in maintaining their health, while eliminating pesticide use.

Dr. Grebenok’s research teams have been conducting research in the area of plant, insect and ecosystem interactions for the past 30 years and have authored eight grants, which have generated more than $1.5 million dollars in government support for this research. The interdisciplinary team includes faculty researchers, postdoctoral research associates, graduate students and undergraduate students at Texas A&M University, Cornell University, the Max Planck Institute in East Germany and Canisius. Local high school students and Canisius science majors actively participate in Dr. Grebenok’s research, conducting experiments, assisting with data analysis, and presenting their research results at local, regional and international symposia. Most importantly, members of Dr. Grebenok’s research team learn how to interact effectively as a vital part of an interdisciplinary international research team.

Submitted by: Sara Morris, associate vice president, academic affairs

Get to Know…

FlammerRachel Flammer came to Canisius as an admissions counselor and since that time, she has taken on myriad of responsibilities in various shades of Blue and Gold – assistant alumni director, then alumni director; assistant director of stewardship and events, now director of stewardship and events. See the pattern here?  Rachel tackles each new task with enthusiasm, intelligence and a determination to take what she has inherited to the next level of excellence.

Rachel and her team worked tirelessly to pull off another record-breaking Regents Ball in 2015. Along with Ava Carys Flammer, Canisius College Class of 2029, Chase Bradley Flammer, Class of 2032 and Gregory G. Flammer ’97, MBA ’04, the Flammer family is always a hit when attending Mass at Christ the King Chapel or other events on campus. Whether negotiating big ticket prizes for the ball or arranging for donors to spend time with their scholarship recipients, Rachel’s winning ways inspire confidence and passion for Canisius College.

Did you know…Rachel is originally from Saugerties, NY. This small town in the Hudson Valley is also the original home of Jimmy Fallon. Rachel also lived and worked in Boston, MA and New York City before venturing over to Western New York to work at Canisius. She stays busy happily chasing around her two toddlers at home.

Submitted by: Public Relations

Town Hall Meeting

President John J. Hurley will host a Town Hall meeting for faculty and staff on Tuesday, February 9 in the Grupp Fireside Lounge in the Richard E. Winter ’42 Student Center from 2:00 – 3:00 p.m.

President Hurley will give an update on the latest developments at the college and take any questions you may have.

These events have been valuable opportunities to exchange ideas, share opinions and engage in a dialogue with campus leaders about the important issues and opportunities facing Canisius. Please consider attending.

The next Town Hall will be held on Wednesday April 13, 2016.

Thank you.

Submitted by: Laura A. Montaro, executive associate, Office of the President

2016 Employee Information Update

It’s a new year and to ensure that Human Resources has the most current and accurate data, please update your personal data information. Click here to complete the Employee Data Record and return to the Human Resources Department by Monday, February 22. You can also email it to or fax to 716-888-2233.

Now might also be a good time to review/update your beneficiary(s).

TIAA-CREF (if applicable): Log onto your account at or click here to down load a paper form. If you are using the paper form, please complete and send to HR.

Guardian Life Insurance (if applicable): Click here to down load a paper form. Please complete and send to HR.

If you have any questions, please contact the Human Resources Department at Ext. 2241.

Submitted by: Linda Walleshauser, associate vice president, human resources and compliance

February “Crossroads” Now Available

In case you missed it, the February broadcast of “Crossroads” is now available on the Canisius soundcloud.

Program host Rev. Patrick J. Lynch, SJ, interviewed Rev. James M. Pribek, SJ, about Pope Francis’ role in the universal church.  The associate professor of English also reflected on popes from other countries throughout history and popes who were members of other religious orders.

“Crossroads” is a monthly radio program produced by the Network of Religious Communities.  It airs on the first Sunday of each month at 6:00 a.m. on MIX-96 (96.1 FM) and at 6:30 a.m. on JACK-FM (92.9 FM).

Submitted by: Marketing & Communication