I was born and raised just outside of Kansas City, MO, and my family started a retail greenhouse business when I was ten years old. It was here that I first found my interest in plants. I received my B.S. degree from Truman State University, where I double-majored in Agricultural and Biological Sciences. While at Truman, I also participated in several internships including: Bailey Nurseries (Yamhill, OR), the Center for Environmental Farming Systems (Goldsboro, NC), and the Land Institute (Salinas, KS). In 2004, I started graduate school at NC State University and received my M.S. degree in Plant Pathology in 2007. As a graduate student, I've been able to develop my skills both as a student and an educator. Below is a summary of my CV thus far. For full and printable version, click here.


  • North Carolina State University.  Raleigh, NC
    • PhD in Plant Pathology (in progress)
    • Master of Science in Plant Pathology
  • Truman State University.  Kirksville, MO
    • Bachelor of Science in Agriculture with emphasis in horticulture.
    • Bachelor of Science in Biology with emphasis in plant physiology.

Career Experience:

  • Graduate Research Assistant.  North Carolina State University.
    • “Grafting provides novel applications for host resistance in tomato”
    • Biology 181L TA and lab coordinator during 2004-05 academic year
    • Introductory Plant Pathology TA during fall 2007,08.
    • Integrated Disease Management Lab
      • Laboratory and field studies with NC crops (tomato, pepper, strawberry)
  • The Land Institute.  Salinas, Kansas (2003)
    • Interim Short-course based upon Natural Systems Agriculture and perennial crops.
  • Center for Environmental Farming Systems.  Goldsboro, NC (2002)
    • Research internship program through NCSU focusing on sustainable agriculture.
  • Bailey Nurseries Internship.  Yamhill, Oregon (2001)
    • Educational-based internship surrounding horticultural science and business.
  • Nick’s Greenleaf Gardens.  Kansas City, Missouri (1991-2000)
    • Duties include: plant propagation, transplanting, watering, pest and disease management, grounds maintenance, landscaping, and equipment maintenance.

Classroom Teaching Experience:

  • Principles of Plant Pathology (PP 315) – TA (Fall 2007, 2008).
    • Coordinated lab prep and setup with other TAs, technician, and faculty mentor.
    • Assisted with weekly lab quizzes and lab practicals.
    • Coordinated grading and online gradebooks.
    • Gave weekly introductory lectures in lab.
    • Carried out two 75-minute classes during lecture section
      • Principles of Disease Mgmnt: Introduction, Regulatory and Cultural Control
      • Principles of Disease Mgmnt: Host Resistance
    • Co-moderated two on-line Elluminate review sessions for DE section.
    • Assisted with revision of PP 315 lab notebook.
    • Assisted with lecture videotaping and conversion to “Authorpoint” presentations for DE section. 
  • Greenhouse Food Production (HS 590C) – Guest lecturer (02/15/07).
    • Reviewed basic biology of common southeastern soilborne disease in tomato and discuss grafting as an IPM technique for management.
  • Vegetable Food Production (HS 431) – Guest Lecturer (11/02/06, 11/01/07).
    • Reviewed basic biology of common southeastern soilborne disease in tomato and discuss grafting as an IPM technique for management.
    • Prepared and oversaw subsequent tomato grafting lab.
  • Graduate Teaching Assistant, North Carolina State University (08/04 – 05/05).
    • Prepared and delivered lectures to Biology 181 Lab.
    • Instructed and oversaw lab procedures during class.
    • Constructed and graded assignments relevant to lab.
    • Coordinated lab preparation and setup of 15 lab sections in spring ’05.


  • Rivard, C.L. and F.J. Louws, 2008.  Grafting to manage soilborne diseases in heirloom tomato production.  Hortscience 43:2104-2111.
  • Rivard, C.L., S. O’Connell, M.M. Peet, and F.J. Louws.  2008.  Grafting as a viable tool to manage major soilborne diseases in the SE-USA.  Proceedings from the 2008 Annual International Research Conference on Methyl Bromide Alternatives and Emissions Reductions.  Orlando, FL USA.
  • Rivard, C.L. and F.J. Louws, 2007.  Disease Management and Crop Productivity Utilizing Grafted Tomatoes.  Proceedings from the 2007 Annual International Research Conference on Methyl Bromide Alternatives and Emissions Reductions.  San Diego, CA USA.
  • Rivard, C.L. and F.J. Louws, 2006.  Grafting: An Integrated Approach for Soilborne Disease Management.  Proceedings from the 21st Annual Tomato Disease Workshop.  Fletcher, NC USA.
  • Rivard, C.L. and F.J. Louws, 2006.  Grafting for Disease Resistance in Heirloom Tomatoes.  Ag-675:  Extension Factsheet.  College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, North Carolina Cooperative Extension Services.

Meeting Abstracts:

  • Rivard, C.L., S. O’Connell, M.M. Peet, and F.J. Louws.  2009.  Grafting tomato with inter-specific rootstock provides effective management for southern blight and root-knot nematodes.  Phytopathology 99:S109
  • Rivard, C.L., F. J. Louws , S. O’Connell, and M.M. Peet.  2009.  The grafted tomato system: Are there advantages in the presence of soilborne diseases.  Hortscience 44:1111-1112
  • Rivard, C.L., F. J. Louws, M.M. Peet, and S. O’Connell.  2008.  High tunnels and grafting for disease management in organic tomato production.  Phytopathology 98:S133
  • Rivard, C.L. and F.J. Louws, 2007.  Elevation of proteinase inhibitor II (PIN II) expression in tomato as a response to grafting.  Phytopathology 97:S99.
  • Rivard, C.L. and F.J. Louws, 2007.  Grafting for soilborne disease management in organic heirloom tomato production.  Phytopathology 97:S99.
  • Rivard, C.L. and F.J. Louws, 2006.  Grafting Provides a Multi-strategic Management Tool for Heirloom Tomato Production Systems.  Phytopathology 96:S98.

Grants / Awards Received:

  • 2009 North Carolina State Graduate Student Research Symposium
    • First Place – Agricultural Sciences Division
  • 2008 Northeast Region SARE Producer Grant
    • “An Economic Comparison of Grafted Tomato Transplant Production and Utilization in multi-bay High Tunnels”
    • Technical Advisor
    • $9,976 Awarded
  • 2007 Northeast Region SARE Producer Grant
    • “Grafting Tomatoes in Multi-bay High Tunnels to Overcome Soilborne Diseases”
    • Technical Advisor
    • $5,992 Awarded
  • 2007 Eddie Echandi Award
    • “Integrated Pest Management for Tropical Plant Pathology”
    • APS Foundation Graduate Student Travel Award
    • $500 Awarded
  • 2007 Organic Farming Research Foundation Research Grant
    • “Grafting Tomatoes on Disease Resistant Rootstocks in Small-scale Organic Production Systems”
    • Co-Primary Investigator
    • $11,174 Awarded
  • 2006 Southern Region SARE Research and Education Project
    • “Grafting Rootstocks onto Heirloom and Locally Adapted Tomato Selections to Confer Resistance to Root-knot Nematodes and other Soilborne Diseases and to Increase Nutrient Uptake Efficiency in an Intensive Farming System for Market Gardeners”
    • Project Collaborator
    • $193,000 Awarded
  • 2005 Southern Region SARE Graduate Student Grant in Sustainable Agriculture
    • “Inducing Disease Resistance and Increased Production in Organic Heirloom Tomatoes Through Grafting”
    • Primary Investigator
    • $10,000 Awarded


Other Work Experience:

  • Il Spazio Restaurant and Microbrewery, Inc.
    • Head Brewer
    • Duties include all aspects of microbrewery: formulating recipes, maintaining equip. and facilities, ordering, scheduling, federal and state tax forms, brewing, bartending.
Strawberries in the garden