About Charles Valentine Riley

The characteristic of Riley as a “whole-picture” person is reflected in the precepts and goals of the Riley Memorial Foundation.

Riley Memorial Foundation

The Charles Valentine Riley Memorial Foundation (RMF) is committed to promoting a broader and more complete understanding of agriculture and to building upon Charles Valentine Riley’s legacy as a “whole picture” person with a vision for enhancing agriculture through scientific knowledge. RMF, founded in 1985, recognized that agriculture is the most basic human endeavor and that a vibrant, robust, food, agricultural, forestry, and environmental-resource system is essential for human progress and world peace.


The theme for the various RMF program activities is “to promote a broader and more complete understanding of agriculture as the most basic human endeavor and to enhance agriculture through increased scientific knowledge.”



Pursuing a Unifying Message

Overview. A major activity of RMF is a collaborative effort to pursue a unifying message among many stakeholders towards a goal of elevating food, agricultural and natural resources research as a national priority. The unifying message efforts have been led by RMF and Iowa State University, along with partners that include Mississippi State University, the Soil and Water Conservation Society, Texas Tech University, Colorado State University and the American Society of Plant Biologists. An overview of activities and partnerships from 2013 to 2016 is available.


Position Statement. The RMF’s position statement outlines the critical importance of increasing public investment in food, agricultural and natural resources research, and 7 key points the RMF supports in moving forward with a unifying message. Read the RMF Position Statement.


NEW REPORT: A Food, Nutrition and Health Perspective. In October 2016, the newest unifying message report was completed — Pursuing a Unifying Message: Elevating Food, Agricultural and Natural Resources Research as a National Priority. A Food, Nutrition and Health Perspective. The report summarizes a roundtable discussion held in May 2016 with 22 leaders representing public and private research interests in food, nutrition and health.


Report: A Scientific Society Perspective. In March 2016, the unifying message partnership’s newest report was completed — Pursuing a Unifying Message: Elevating Food, Agricultural and Natural Resources Research as a National Priority. A Scientific Society Perspective. The report, which is the third in a series focused on the unifying message, summarizes a roundtable discussion held in December 2015 with invited leaders from 23 American scientific societies.


Report: A University Perspective. In June 2015, RMF released its second unifying message report, Pursuing a Unifying Message: Elevating Food, Agricultural and Natural Resources Research as a National Priority. A University Perspective. The report summarizes a roundtable discussion with 23 invited leaders of universities, university associations. An announcement of the report is available.


Original report. The partnership’s original report, Pursuing a Unifying Message: Elevating Food, Agricultural and Natural Resources Research as a National Priority, was released at the National Press Club on December 5, 2014. The report documents that the U.S. is in danger of losing its prominence in the scientific research upon which our food, agriculture, and natural resources systems depend and presents a case for many organizations working together toward a common goal at a time when global challenges require additional investment in agricultural research. Watch the archived webcast on the report’s release. View Iowa State University Dean Wendy Wintersteen’s presentation (PDF document). Read the release announcing the report and view the day’s program. View an infographic summary of the report.


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