The President's Advisory Committee

The President's Advisory Committee (PAC) was inaugurated at NIR-91 in Aberdeen. It exists to carry out a number of specific functions in addition to a providing general advice to the Chairman on various issues. Foremost among the defined functions is the annual election of the Tomas Hirschfeld Award winner. The original rules governing the composition and election of CAC members were modified at a meeting in Chambersburg in 1998.


The PAC currently comprises the following:

  1. Immediate Past President of ICNIRS - this person acts as president of the PAC
    Ana Garrido
  2. Immediate Past President of the PAC
    Pierre Dardenne
  3. Foundation members
    Karl Norris
  4. Convenors of the last two ICNIRS conferences 2015 & 2017
    Celio Pasquini and Soren Engelsen
  5. Executive Committee members
     Tom Fearn, Steve Holroyd, Sirinnapa Saranwong
  6. Eight elected members 

          Elected members 2013-2017: Philippe Vermeulen, Roger Meder, Chris Piotrowski and Soren Engelsen,

          Elected members 2015-2019: Kerry Walsh, Nada O'Brien, Satoru Tsuchikawa and Jean-Michel Roger


Ana Garrido-Varo, PAC president (2017-2019)

anaAna Garrido-Varo has a PhD in Agriculture Engineering (University of Córdoba, Spain). Since 1980 she has served as instructor and teacher in the Faculty of Agriculture and Forestry Engineering (ETSIAM). Currently, she holds the position of Professor in Fundamentals and Technology of Livestock Production and in Non-destructive Spectral Sensors for Quality, Safety and Traceability of Agro-Food Products. She has over twenty years experience in the field of Near Infrared Spectroscopy (NIRS). She leads the Non-Destructive Spectral Sensors Unit (NDSSU) at her Faculty. She held the position of Head of NIRS activities at the Centralised NIRS-Sample Bank Unit of the University of Córdoba, from 1990 until 2000. Currently, the Unit has several NIRS and NIR-imaging instruments and it is providing scientific and technical support to many scientists with rather different academic backgrounds. In 2001, she and other colleagues, encouraged the creation of the spin-off  NIRsoluciones founded by four postdocs specialising in NIRS. At present, NIRSoluciones, as an independent technological company, acts as the "NIRS knowledge transfer arm" of the NDSSU Unit. She has experience in the scientific co-ordination of several national R + D projects for the implementation of NIRS technology in the Spanish Food and Feed Industry and since 1990 she has participated as Workpackage coordinator in different NIRS R & D projects supported by the European Union. She dedicates great efforts to promote the growth and development of at-line and on-line NIRS analysis, in the Spanish food and animal feed industry, through targeted Research & Training Initiatives. She has chaired the Education Group of the International Council for Near Infrared Spectroscopy (ICNIRS) since 2007, and she became Chair-Elect of ICNIRS in 2009. She is also a member of the Editorial Advisory Board of the Journal of Near Infrared Spectroscopy. In 2005 she was honoured by ICNIRS with the Tomas Hirschfeld award. She has published more than 150 journal papers, book chapters, conference and refereed workshop papers and she has supervised more than 30 MSc and PhD theses related to NIRS, NIRS-microscopy and NIRS-imaging.

Email :  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Pierre Dardenne, Immediate Past PAC President (2017-2019)

pierre bangkok2

Pierre Dardenne is Agronomy Engineer from Gembloux Agricultural University. In 1980, he was employed by the Walloon Agricultural Research Centre (CRA-W) to lead research in Near Infrared Spectroscopy (NIRS), which he continues to do. In 1991, he obtained his PhD in Agronomic Sciences at Gembloux Agricultural University in the field of spectroscopy and chemometrics. He has 30 years experience in the development of agronomic and agro-industrial applications in NIRS. He is involved in many European programs. 

Since 2000, he has led the department, extended and renamed on 1st January 2010. " Valorisation of agricultural products". He leads other groups of scientists working on feed and food chemical composition, contaminants (heavy metals, antibiotics), milk microbiology and GMO detection. Authenticity, anti-fraud and food safety are keywords in many research programs of his department. 

- 1989: Co-organiser of the 3rd International NIRS Conference held in Brussels

- 1990-1994: member of the FLAIR-QUEST Concerted Action (Quality established by spectroscopic techniques) 

- 1990-2001: As result of NIRS expertise, particularly in instrument standardisation, invited as speaker and chairman to different international NIRS Conferences 

- Referee of Journal of Near Infrared Spectroscopy

- Chairman of NIR working group for the BIPEA (Bureau Interprofessionnel d'Etudes Analytiques , France )

- Tomas Hirschfeld awardee 2002 for contribution to NIRS.

- Coordinator of EU project :  STRATFEED.


Email :  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



Karl N. Norris, Permanent Founding Member


Karl Norris pioneered the development of Near Infrared Reflectance technology for the simple, accurate, rapid, and inexpensive testing of many quality characteristics of food and grains. This technology, which has been widely adopted in the world grain marketing system, has revolutionized the way the system determines grain quality. He has also made pioneering contributions to research into fundamental aspects of photobiology, by developing the technology and the instruments to analyze the pigments in plants without destroying the sample. His instruments made it possible to detect, for the first time, the pigment (later named Phytochrome), which senses light to control most of the morphological changes in plants. The techniques developed by Karl are now being applied wherever it is important to analyze the composition of a sample, and he is now serving as a consultant to expand these applications. Karl retired as Research Leader of the Instrumentation Research Laboratory, of the USDA's Agricultural Research Service in 1989, after more than 38 years as an internationally recognized authority on instrumental methods of measuring the quality of agricultural products. He holds several patents, and is the author or co-author of more than 100 research papers. He has received many awards including election to the National Academy of Engineering in 1980, and an honorary Doctorate from Wilson College in 2006.

Email : This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Celio Pasquini, Conference Chairman for the past ICNIRS Conference (2015)

Dr. Célio Pasquini is a full professor of the Department   of Analytical Chemistry of the Chemistry Institute of the State University of Campinas (UNICAMP), Campinas - SP - Brazil ( and has been a member of the staff for 23 years. He started working in the field   of near infrared spectroscopy about 10 years ago. His interests   in the field are in the development of new and portable instruments and in the development of analytical methods for   agriculture (forestry industry), petroleum and fuel derived from   petroleum. Recently his efforts have also been directed towards the development and application of a NIR emission spectrometer based on an acousto-optic tunable filter.

The opportunity to become a correspondent for the ICNIRS website in South America is welcomed in view of the work yet to be done in this region of the globe. The first step is to ensure that people interested in NIR spectroscopy from academia and industry work together to disseminate information about NIR technology, starting from undergraduate courses in Chemistry.

Academia in the region has only made a modest contribution to this important field of research while most of the information on NIR spectroscopy is passed to people in the industries by instrument vendors. Sometimes, the prevalence of a commercial   point of view has inhibited the spread of NIR use in industry and agriculture in Brazil. On the other hand, the lack of information in the subject of NIR technology for our undergraduate students (future employees) closes a dangerous circle, which, in my point of view, inhibits the development of NIR spectroscopy in our country.

I hope the work as an ICNIRS correspondent in South America can help us to enhance our contribution to the global community dedicated to NIR spectroscopy, increasing the number of contacts with foreign researchers and sharing NIR developments that have been occuring in America below the Equator.

Email :      This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.



Soren Balling Engelsen, Conference Chairman for the current ICNIRS Conference (2017)

SorenEngelsen Søren Balling Engelsen is Professor and head of the section for Spectroscopy & Chemometrics at the University of Copenhagen, Denmark. He has a PhD (1992) in vibrational spectroscopy and molecular modelling from the Technical University in Denmark including one year stay abroad at Cornell University (US) to study molecular dynamics simulations. From 1992 to 1995, he worked as a post-doctoral fellow at Ingénierie Moléculaire, INRA-Nantes (France). Since 1995 he was employed as assistant professor in ”Spectroscopy and molecular modeling” in the research group of Professor Lars Munck and started to use NIR spectroscopy for diverse applications within high-throughput non-invasive industrial quality control and academic food and health research. Since 2004 he has been professor in Biospectroscopy and been heading the Spectroscopy & Chemometrics group at University of Copenhagen (now approx. 40 persons). The research focus is on the development- and application of multivariate high-throughput quantitative spectroscopic methods for biological samples in quality control, process analytical technology, foodomics and metabolomics. He has authored and co-authored more than 170 peer-reviewed scientific papers and been granted two patents.

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Tom Fearn, Chair-Elect (2015-2017)


Tom Fearn is Professor of Applied Statistics at University College London, UK, where he is currently Head of the Department of Statistical Science. Before joining UCL in 1989 he worked for the Flour Milling and Baking Research Association (FMBRA) at Chorleywood, where he first began to calibrate NIR instruments (a 6-filter InfraAlyser 2.5) in1978. His interest in NIR and in chemometrics more generally has continued to the present. As well as 140 or so papers his publications include joint authorship of the books Practical NIR Spectroscopy, with Osborne and Hindle, and A User Friendly Guide to Multivariate Calibration and Classification, with Næs, Isaksson and Davies. He is chemometrics editor of the Journal of Near Infrared Spectroscopy and writes the Chemometric Space column in NIR News.He received the Tomas Hirschfeld award for contributions to near infrared spectroscopy in 2001.   

Email : This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Steve Holroyd, Treasurer (2013-2017)


Steve Holroyd is a technical manager for Fonterra based in New Zealand . His role is to manage a team of analytical chemists, microbiologists and microscopists evaluating and developing analytical technology that is used to support Fonterra's milk harvesting and processing business worldwide.

He completed a PhD in chemistry at Auckland University , New Zealand in 1991. Then he undertook postdoctoral studies at Cambridge University (UK) from 1991 to 1993, investigating drug-substrate interactions via spectroscopy. From 1993 to 1998, he worked as an analytical spectroscopist in the oil industry in the UK and Europe. Returning to NZ, he commenced work at Fonterra Research Centre in 1998 where his main area of research has been the development and use of infrared spectroscopy for the rapid quantitative and qualitative analysis of milk and milk products. This has included the introduction of networked NIR instruments and global calibration solutions. He was on the organising committee for the NIR 2005 conference in Auckland , NZ and served as a co-editor for the proceedings from that conference. He is currently secretary of the New Zealand NIR Spectroscopy Society. 

Email : This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Sirinnapa Mui Saranwong, Secretary (2013-2017)


Sirinnapa Saranwong, aka Mui, is an NIR/Process Application Scientist with Bruker Optics, Tokyo, Japan. Mui obtained her Ph.D. in Biology from Chiang Mai University at the age of 25 in 2003. Her thesis project involved measuring the maturity of on-tree mango fruit with a hand-held NIR instrument. During her doctoral studies she was admitted to the prestigious Royal Golden Jubilee Ph.D. program and invited to work in Sumio Kawano’s lab at the National Food Research Institute (NFRI) in Tsukuba, Japan, where she studied NIR basics and applications to perishable products. After graduation, Mui continued working as a researcher with Dr Kawano for eight years. During that time, she conducted NIR research not only on fruit, but also milk, blood, meat and other commodities At NFRI, Mui had the opportunity to welcome prominent researchers from around the world, giving her access to the NIR network worldwide. She has been deeply involved in the Japan Council for Near Infrared (JCNIRS) as well as the Asian NIR Consortium, helping to organize the annual Japanese NIR Forum since 2003, the Japan-Thailand Joint Symposium on Nondestructive Technology in 2004, the Japan-Korea Joint Symposium on Near Infrared Spectroscopy in 2006 and the biannual Asian NIR Symposium since 2008. Mui is most recognized as the Secretary for the 14th International Conference for Near Infrared Spectroscopy, held in Bangkok in November 2009. For the international society, Mui attended her first ICNIRS meeting in 2001 (Korea) and has attended every subsequent meeting. She became Asian Editor for NIRNews in 2006 and has been a member of ICNIRS Management Committee from 2007 to 2013.

Mui has authored a number of peer reviewed publications, as well as a Book chapter on NIR spectroscopy. She has been invited to present her work in many countries, including Thailand, USA, Australia, Germany, and the Philippines. Since 2011, Mui has worked to support the sales team at Bruker Optics, not only for R&D or QC applications but extending her expertise to online/inline applications.

Email : This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Philippe Vermeulen, Elected member (2013-2017)

PhV2 Ir. Philippe VERMEULEN is research engineer at the Valorisation of Agricultural Products Department at the Walloon Agricultural Research Centre (CRA-W, Gembloux - Belgium). He got in 1988 his Engineer degree in Agricultural Sciences from the Catholic University of Louvain. During ten years, he worked in a breeding private company (Hybritech-Monsanto) on a European research program in hybrid wheat. Since 2001, he works in CRA-W, inside Food and Feed Quality Unit. He is involved in the development of spectroscopic methods for the control on-line of agro-food products and feed. He is working in several studies on kernel by kernel analysis and on contaminants detection in cereals. He is also involved as dissemination officer through several European projects (Stratfeed 2001-2004; Trace 2005-2009; Conffidence 2008-2012) and networks (ICNIRS 2008-2013; EURL-AP 2007- ; Feedsafety 2007- ).

Email : This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Roger Meder, Elected member (2013-2017)

Roger Meder Roger Meder has a BSc and MSc in chemistry from Otago University in New Zealand. He completed his PhD with Prof Sir Paul Callaghan at Massey University (New Zealand) in the field of physics, specifically magnetic resonance imaging and spectroscopy. He spent 16 years at the NZ Forest Research Institute where he first started using IR, NIR and NMR spectra to predict wood quality in order to provide rapid non-destructive measurement of end-use performance.

Upon moving to Australia in 2001, he spent a brief period at Queensland University of Technology and then joined the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) where was the Group Leader of several groups including the Forest Genetics, Genomics and Phenomics group within CSIRO Agriculture Flagship, which is located in Brisbane and Canberra. Due to severe government budget cuts the entire forestry group was disbanded and so Roger now has two roles as an independent consultant (Meder Consulting) in the broader forestry and agricultural sector and as an Adjunct Professor in the Forest Industries Research Centre at the University of the Sunshine Coast. His current interest is the application of NIR spectroscopy to allow non-destructive, in-forest, rapid phenotyping of thousands of individuals within tree breeding trials to provide tree breeders with additional measures of wood quality (other than growth and density) to improve breeding selection.

He is an editor of the Journal of Near Infrared Spectroscopy and has guest edited two Special Issues dedicated to Applications of NIR Spectroscopy to Wood and Wood Products. He holds positions within the International Union of Forest Research Organisations (IUFRO) as a Deputy Coordinator of Division 5 (Forest Products) and the Coordinator of Research Group 5.06 (Characterisation and Utilisation of Plantation Wood). He is a member of the Chairman’s Advisory Committee of the International Council for NIR Spectroscopy, and is Chair of the local organizing committee for NIR-2019 to be held on the Gold Coast, Australia.

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Chris Piotrowski, Elected member (2013-2017)


Chris Piotrowski has worked in the NIR industry since 1978. His early years werespent gaining knowledge and skills as an analytical chemist. By the late 1980s he was tasked with introducing an NIR network to the 10 feed mills of J Bibby & Sons. Following this successful implementation he returned to running both the analytical and NIR divisions of Central Laboratories. In 1995 Central Laboratories was set up as a commercial laboratory serving the food and feed industries. The laboratory grew rapidly covering a diverse range of techniques, including analytical chemistry, microbiology and NIR spectroscopy. In 2008 the decision was made to sell the analytical division of Central Laboratories to AB Agri allowing Chris and the team to focus on the core activity of NIR under the new name of Aunir.

Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Kerry Walsh, Elected member (2015-2019)

KerryWalsh2015redProfessor Kerry Walsh has a BSc hons from the University of Queensland (Australia) and a MSc and PhD from Queens University (Canada).  The PhD work, in the mid 1980s, on the physiology of legume nodule function included fibre optic based assessment of the oxygenation status of leghaemoglobin in in situ legume nodules, representing his first exposure to short wave near infrared spectroscopy.  Upon return to Australia in the late 1980s he was enticed by local horticulturalists to recommend technology for the non-invasive assessment of fruit soluble sugar levels, to prove to the market the superiority of local fruit.  This led to an increasing involvement with near infrared spectroscopy, supporting the adoption of this technology into both pack-line systems and hand held instrumentation for use in orchard.  This work has extended to assessment of defects such as internal browning in apple, and has also involved whole of system context, e.g.. change in agronomic practice and decision support systems.  Uptake of such technology is exemplified by the Australian mango industry, in context of assessment of fruit maturity and the decision to harvest.  This work support his progression to a personal (professorial) chair at Central Queensland University in 2008.  His career total includes over 100 refereed publications and 9 book chapters, with a Scopus H index of 23.  He has supervised 26 postgraduates to completion and assisted the progression of numerous post doctoral fellows through employment on grants, and has held a range of University administration posts (e.g. Associate Dean of Faculty, Associate Dean Research, Research Institute Director).  He continues to lead a group focussed on the development of non-invasive technologies for assessment of fruit quality, primarily involving the application of near infrared spectroscopy.  Kerry was co-chair of the International Horticultural Congress Symposium on Non-destructive assessment of fruit attributes (2014), ran a workshop on non-invasive technologies for mango production at the International Mango Conference (2015) and is on the local organising committee for NIR-2019 to be held on the Gold Coast, Australia.  

Email : This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Nada O'Brien, Elected member (2015-2019)

Nada O BrienNada O’Brien is a Manager at Oculus Research, Facebook, developing next generation head mounted displays for consumer applications. Nada has 20 years of experience in product development in the field of optics. Prior to joining Oculus, she has held engineering, product development, and product management roles at Viavi (previously JDSU) in Telecommunications, Display, Defense, and other newly created product lines based on disruptive technologies like the MicroNIR™ spectrometer and form-birefringent optical components. Nada earned her Ph.D. degree in Materials Science and Engineering from the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Chemical Engineering from Trine University in Indiana. She is an inventor on 10 patents in the fields of miniature spectroscopy, electrochromic technology and nanotechnology optical fabrication.

Email : This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Satoru Tsuchikawa, Elected member (2015-2019)

TsuchikawaSatoru Tsuchikawa graduated from the School of Agriculture and the Graduate School of Agricultural Sciences, Nagoya University, Japan, in 1987 and 1989, respectively. His academic career started in 1990 as an Assistant Professor at Nagoya University. He earned a Ph.D. in Agricultural Sciences from Nagoya University in 1998. In 2004, he was Professor at Nagoya University. Since 2016, he is Vice Dean at the Graduate School of Bioagricultural Sciences, Nagoya University. His main research area is the application of NIR spectroscopy to wood and various agricultural products. He has been involved in this sort of studies for over 25 years, and published more than 100 papers. He has won several awards, including the Buchi NIR Award (2003) and the PerkinElmer Award (2003). He is secretary-general of Asian NIR Consortium (2013 -) and Japan NIR Consortium (2011 -). 

Email : This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Jean-Michel Roger, Elected member (2015-2019)


JMRogerJean-Michel Roger is Rural and Forestry Engineer from AgroParisTech french school. In 1995, he obtained his PhD in bioprocess sciences and he specialized in data processing and knowledge management. In 1998 he joined the team of Pr Véronique Bellon-Maurel who studied NIR spectrometry for agro-food products. He developed chemometrics methods for the design of embedded and hand held NIR sensors. He focused is research on the robustness problem. He has been stongly involved in many European projects dedicated to fruit quality assessment by NIR spectroscopy (SHIVA, VISHNU, GLOVE, ISAFRUIT). In 2003, simultaneously with Pr Tom Fearn, he proposed a new generic method called External Parameter Orthogonalization (EPO) which permits to eliminate specific spectral effects from the NIRS calibration and thus to solve certain problems of robustness. Some specific methods and applications were derived to address the problems of calibration transfer, drift compensation online,inter seasonal adjustment or compensation of the moisture effect for NIR based characterization of soil.

Jean-Michel Roger was also involved in the design of portable or online spectrometers using filters technology. This design requires to select the most relevant variables of the spectra. A lot of methods exist, but none are really suited to the case of multi responses NIR calibration. That is why he developed a method that responds to this problem (CovSel). This method has been extensively applied to set up waste sorting machines. Hundreds of these machines are now running worldwide.

Jean-Michel Roger is invested in the management of HelioSPIR, a French speaking society devoted to NIRS. He is vice president of this structure. He participates to the organization of the yearly conference of this society. He is invested in the management of the French Group of Chemometrics and participates to the organization of the yearly conference of this society. He was chairman of the CAC2008 Conference (Chemometrics in Analytical Chemistry), held in Montpellier, France. He was closely associated to the chair of the NIR2013 conference, held in La Grande Motte, France.

Email : This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Date online : 3 August 2018