Dickson Despommier, PhD, is Emeritus Professor of Microbiology and Public Health at Columbia University. From 1971-1999, he conducted NIH-sponsored research on Trichinella spiralis, the causative agent of trichinellosis. From 1986-2009, he was director of Parasitic Diseases, a required course for second-year medical students. During that period, he was elected Teacher of the Year eight times. In 2003, the American Medical Student Association honored him with their annual national Golden Apple For Teaching Excellence Award. He authored: Parasite Life Cycles, West Nile Story; People, Parasites, and Plowshares; and The Vertical Farm. Together with Dr. Vincent Racaniello, he is co-host on the popular podcasts: This Week in Parasitism, This Week in Virology, and Urban Agriculture. His web sites include: www.medicalecology.org; www.trichinella.org; www.verticalfarm.com; and www.thelivingriver.org.