Many invasive diseases threaten our trees, some we are living with and others have yet invade California. Department of Agriculture works to identify the greatest threats and prevent their spread to California. In the event of invasion, a rapid response is necessary if control or management is feasible.
A graduate of Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, Kathy Kosta has worked as a plant pathologist for 33 years. She was a technician in the California Department of Food and Agriculture, Plant Pathology Laboratory for eight years and the Nevada State Plant Pathologist for the Nevada Department of Agriculture for seven years. As the sole plant pathologist for the state, she worked on diseases of trees as well as turfgrass, landscape and agricultural crops. In 2006, Kathy accepted the position of Primary State Plant Pathologist for CDFA serving as advisor and representative of the Department on issues concerning plant diseases. In early 2012 she changed positions and now works on the disease known as Sudden Oak Death, caused by the pathogen Phytophthora ramorum, which affects many tree species and ornamental plants in the nursery trade.