Anna Hayes, Ph.D. (Candidate for Director)

Anna Hayes, Ph.D., is a Lifetime Member of Phi Tau Sigma. After obtaining a B.S. in Food & Nutrition Science and a B.A. in Spanish from St. Catherine University (Summa Cum Laude, Valedictorian, 2014; St. Paul, MN), she earned her Ph.D. in Food Science under the guidance of Dr. Bruce Hamaker at Purdue University (2021; West Lafayette, IN) with dual concentrations in Foods for Health and Ingestive Behavior. Anna is currently a Postdoctoral Researcher at the University of Southern California (Los Angeles, CA), where she is expanding upon her interest in Ingestive Behavior by conducting research in Behavioral Neuroscience using rodent models. Recently named an NIH National Research Service Award Postdoctoral Fellow, Anna is studying the neurobiological mechanisms underlying Western diet-induced cognitive dysfunction. With 19 research publications to date, Anna strives to contribute to our understanding of the interplay between food components and the body by closely connecting food science with neuroscience in investigating the control of food intake.

In addition to her research pursuits, Anna has been fortunate to serve in a number of leadership, teaching, and mentorship roles. She has been Treasurer/Assistant Treasurer, Vice President, and President of the Phi Tau Sigma Hoosier Chapter at Purdue University from 2016-2020; Co-Chair of the Midwest Area Meeting for the Institute of Food Technologists Student Association (IFTSA) hosted at Purdue University in Spring 2019; Secretary, Newsletter Lead, and Student Representative for the IFT Carbohydrate Division from 2016-2021; and President of the Cereals & Grains (formerly AACC International) Student Association as well as Student Representative on the Board of Directors for the Cereals & Grains Association from 2018-2020; among other roles. Anna has also been an active member of the Phi Tau Sigma Program Committee since 2019. For the current 2022-2023 year, she is serving as Chair of the Awards Ceremony subcommittee of the Program Committee for Phi Tau Sigma as well as Chair of the IFT Carbohydrate Division.

Anna worked as a tutor throughout her undergraduate years, has given over 10 guest lectures for courses ranging from Cereal Chemistry and Processing to Neurobiology of Feeding Behavior and Obesity during her graduate and postgraduate years, and served as the instructor-of-record for an Introduction to Food Processing elective course at Purdue as a graduate student in Spring 2019. Additionally, Anna has both helped others grow and experienced personal growth by mentoring more than 10 undergraduate and graduate students. Anna also enjoys ‘paying it forward’ to the next generation of scientists by serving as a judge at youth science fairs.

Vision for ΦΤΣ:  It is both an honor and a privilege to be a member of Phi Tau Sigma, The Honor Society of Food Science and Technology, and even more of an honor to have the opportunity to run for Director. As I have become more involved in Phi Tau Sigma on both the local and national levels, I have been increasingly inspired in learning about the accomplishments of our members and the dedication of those leading our Society. When I hear “Phi Tau Sigma”, I immediately think ‘honor’, ‘prestige’, and ‘accomplished.’ Yet, with these thoughts in mind, I do think it is important for us to critically reflect upon and identify key opportunities for us to grow the Society, while maintaining our longstanding commitment to high standards of excellence and continuing to deliver value to our members. Admittedly, I do not know how to do this. However, this is where you all come in – as members of our Society. I envision us enhancing our Society together by: (1) continuing, and enlarging our efforts, to incorporate the perspectives of all our members, whether students, industry professionals, government or policymakers, or academics; (2) escalating opportunities to enable connections among our members to promote a heightened community bond and a network that can benefit members’ career trajectories; and (3) largely based on the outcomes of the first two points, expanding the opportunities that our Society provides in order to elevate the value we offer to members. This visionary framework – incorporating perspectives, escalating connections, and expanding opportunities – is the foundation of how I envision us moving forward, together, to benefit current and future generations of accomplished individuals in the field of food science and technology.