Picture of Peta Bonham-Smith

Peta Bonham-Smith BSc, PhD Dean College of Arts and Science, Department of Biology

Arts 226


Peta Bonham-Smith is Professor of Biology and Dean, College of Arts and Science at the University of Saskatchewan. Peta received her Ph.D. from the University of Calgary where she studied plant responses to abiotic stresses. This research interest was further cultivated during her early tenure in the Department of Biology, with a focus on plant responses to temperature extremes and drought. Her current research focus (in collaboration with Drs. Yangdou Wei and Chris Todd) is on the molecular biology of clubroot disease in canola. To identify pathogen effectors that provide the ‘masking’ effect for Plasmodiophora brassicae in a host plant cell.

From 2000 to 2002 Peta was the inaugural Director of the Virtual College of Biotechnology; 2008 to 2010 the head of the Department of Biology; 2010 to 2015 the Vice Dean Science and since July 2015 the Dean of the College of Arts and Science. Peta also served as a director with the Saskatchewan Research Council for twelve years (2002-2014) and 2013-2014 was chair (acting) of the board. She has previously served on the SIAST Biotechnology Program Review Committee 2004-2009 and the board of Genome Prairie between 2002-2005. Since 2004 she has been an Associate Editor for Botany (previously Canadian Journal of Botany). She enjoys watching Huskie sports teams compete and currently sits on the Huskie Athletics Board of Trustees.


  • Ph.D., University of Calgary – Plant Stress Physiology
  • B.Sc., Wolverhampton Polytechnic (UK) – Animal Physiology and Biochemistry

Work Experience


  • Dean, College of Arts and Science
  • Professor, Department of Biology


  • Vice Dean Science, College of Arts and Science
  • Head, Department of Biology
  • Professor
  • Research Associate, Biomira, Edmonton – NRC Saskatoon
  • Post-Doctoral Fellow, University of Calgary
  • Post-Doctoral Fellow, University of Arizona


  • YWCA Woman of Distinction for Leadership and Professions, 2016
  • YWCA Woman of Distinction for Science, Technology and the Environment, 2002
  • Teaching Excellence Award, Division of Science, College of Arts and Science, 2009
  • Teaching Excellence Award, University of Saskatchewan Student’s Union, 2000-01

Research Interests

  • Determining the role of ribosomal proteins in ribosome function and heterogeneity, and how expression of ribosomal proteins is regulated and coordinated
  • Clubroot disease in canola