Without plants, life on earth would cease to exist. Plants shape our environment and provide us with food, medicine, clothing, and shelter. Today we are faced with an unprecedented series of challenges – global climate change, food shortages, rapid loss of biodiversity, and new and evolving diseases are threatening both the health of the planet as well as human health and well-being. Research in the plant sciences is greatly significant in addressing aspects of each of these issues. Through its broad-based and innovative studies of basic plant biology, the Section of Plant Biology at Cornell University is positioned to contribute real and impactful solutions to these problems at local, state, national, and global scales.