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Max Rothschild

Prof Max Rothschild

Distinguished Professor, Iowa State University

Max Rothschild is a C.F. Curtiss Distinguished Professor in Agriculture and Life Science and holds the ME Ensminger Chair in International Animal Agriculture. Rothschild received his B.S. in animal science at the University of California, Davis in 1974 and his M.S. at the University of Wisconsin in animal science in 1975. In 1978 he obtained his Ph.D. in animal breeding from Cornell University. In 1980 he joined the Department of Animal Science at the Iowa State University. From 1993 to 2013 Rothschild has served as the USDA Pig Genome Mapping Coordinator. Rothschild has devoted his research and teaching career to the field of animal breeding and molecular genetics. His research has been directed towards identifying genes controlling traits of economic importance in the pig, and several other livestock species. He has presented numerous invited papers in 60 countries and has 400 refereed publications and 12 US patents. He has many awards including being elected to the National Academy of Inventors 2017. Rothschild also has been active in reviewing and developing livestock research around the world and development projects in developing countries. He has also been associated with the Center for Sustainable Rural Livelihoods working in Uganda with families to learn livestock production.

Topic: Using genetics and genomics to design the market pig

Topic: Imagining the future of pig production

John Patience

Prof John Patience

Professor, Iowa State University

Prof John Patience is a Professor of Applied Swine Nutrition in the Department of Animal Science at Iowa State University. He earned his Bachelors and Masters Degrees from the University of Guelph and his Ph.D. in nutritional biochemistry from Cornell University. At Iowa State, his research includes three themes: energy metabolism, ingredient evaluation, and wean-to-finish feeding & management. He works closely with Iowa producers to help them maximize profits by implementing practical new technologies to take advantage of new opportunities and solve feeding problems. Over the course of his career, Prof Patience has published 123 refereed articles, 18 books and book chapters and more than 600 other publications. He has presented more than 400 invited talks at academic and industry conferences across the US and Canada, as well as 15 other countries in South America, Asia and Europe. In the past 10 years at Iowa State University, he has supervised or co-supervised 15 graduate students and currently supervises 3 Ph.D. and 2 M.S. students. His former students are employed in various sectors of the field of nutrition, primarily within the pig and feed industries. Prof Patience has been President of both the Canadian Society of Animal Science and the Midwest Section of the American Society of Animal Science. In 2015, he was awarded the FASS-AFIA New Frontiers in Animal Nutrition Award (Federation of Animal Science Societies/American Feed Industry Association) and in 2018, he was named Honorary Master Pork Producer by the Iowa Pork Producers Association.

Topic: Feeding and management for antibiotic reduced/free pork production

Nick Gabler

Dr Nick Gabler

Associate Professor, Iowa State University

Dr Nicholas Gabler obtained his Bachelors of Agricultural Science from La Trobe University, Melbourne, Australia. In 2005, he received his Ph.D. degree in Animal nutrition and physiology also from La Trobe University. Upon completion of his Ph.D., he conducted postdoctoral research in the USA at both Purdue and Iowa State Universities. Here he worked on evaluating sources of n-3 fatty acids (docosahexaenoic acid and eicosapentaenoic acid) in nursery-finisher pig production and using the pig as a biomedical model. In 2008 he joined the Animal Science Department at ISU as an assistant professor in fundamental swine nutrition and metabolism. Presently, Dr Gabler has an active and diverse research program that focuses on understanding and improving swine feed efficiency, nutrition by health, and intestinal physiology of pigs. He utilized both basic and applied, cellular and whole animal approaches. His research program can be divided into four areas: (1) Understanding the physiology and molecular pathways that define feed efficiency differences in swine; (2) Gastrointestinal physiology (integrity and function) of swine; (3) Using the pig as a biomedical model or dual purpose research (livestock and human application); and (4) Understanding the impact of disease and poor health on metabolism, nutrient requirements and tissue accretion. This later research has been using enteric and respiratory pathogen challenge models to study how health challenges alter pig productivity and nutrition. He is also working on finding alternatives to sub-therapeutic antibiotic growth promotants. Over the last eight years, Dr Gabler has graduated six M.S. students and five Ph.D. students from his program. He has been active as an author and co-author and has published over 60 peer-reviewed journal articles and review papers. Further, he has published over 70 meeting abstracts at regional, national and international meetings since joining the faculty. His research is making important scientific contributions to swine production and science.

Topic: Efficacy of dietary alternatives to growth promoting antibiotics

Anna Johnson

Dr Anna Johnson

Professor, Iowa State University

Dr Anna Johnson is a Professor in the Department of Animal Science at Iowa State University with a 50% research, 25% teaching and 25% extension appointment. Johnson earned her doctorate degree in animal welfare from Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas, her bachelor’s degree in animal science from Reading University and a master’s degree in applied animal behavior and animal welfare from University of Edinburgh. Dr. Johnson teaches both undergraduate and graduate level animal behavior and welfare classes. Johnson’s research interests include pig health, pain and euthanization, caretaker-pig interactions, on-farm assessments and audits and sow productive lifetime. Johnson serves as a resource for livestock industries’ by creating and delivering educational livestock welfare material for example Pork Quality Assurance Plus and the Common Swine Industry Audit. Johnson serves on numerous state, national and international committees. She is a professional reviewer for several leading welfare journals (Applied Animal Behaviour Science, Animal Welfare and Journal of Applied Animal Welfare Science). Prior to joining ISU, Dr. Johnson was the Director of Animal Welfare for the National Pork Board. Johnson developed and implemented Checkoff-funded swine welfare and welfare-related research within the Science & Technology Department. Johnson was instrumental in the formulation and launch of the Swine Welfare Assurance Program. Dr Johnson is active in the International Society for Applied Ethology and is a reviewer for international journals in the field of livestock behavior and welfare.

Topic: On-farm swine welfare: The basics!

Billy Flowers

Dr Billy Flowers

Distinguished Professor, North Carolina State University

In 1987, he joined the faculty in the Animal Science Department at North Carolina State University where he currently is a William Neal Reynolds and Alumni Distinguished Professor with a teaching and research appointment. He teaches undergraduate, graduate, and veterinary classes in reproduction and swine management. His research program focuses on improving male and female fertility. Dr Flowers has published over 170 peer-reviewed journal articles and book chapters and more than 450 popular press / extension articles dealing with swine reproductive physiology and artificial insemination. In addition, he has given 188 invited presentations and has served on or is currently a member of 58 editorial boards, study sections and review panels. He has received several national and international awards for his teaching and research programs including the Food and Agricultural Sciences Excellence in College and University Teaching Awards sponsored by the USDA (2005); being named a Hog Industry Master by National Hog Farmer Magazine (2011); and the American Society of Animal Science’s Distinguished Teacher Award (2017).

Topic: Managing sows and boar for lifetime productivity: Recent developments in reproduction and A.I.

Benny Mote

Dr Benny Mote

Assistant Professor, University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Dr Benny Mote was born and raised in Happy, Texas on a small family farm, which primarily consisted of a 100 sow farrow to finish operation. From the time he was in the fifth grade until he left for the Army, he was solely responsible for processing all baby pigs in the farrowing house which was in addition to other general farm chores. Benny received his BS degree in Animal science from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 2002 and his Ph.D. in Animal Genetics at Iowa State University. While at Iowa State University his primary research focuses on identifying candidate genes that affect the length of a sow’s productive life. Upon the completion of his Ph.D. degree he joined Fast Genetics and was their primary geneticist until 2015 when he joined the faculty at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln as an assistant professor and Swine Extension Specialist. His research concerns sow longevity, genetic control of production traits and precision farming.

Topic: Genetic improvement of sow longevity and its economic impact on commercial pork production

Christy Bratcher

Dr Christy Bratcher

Professor, Auburn University

Dr Christy Bratcher is a professor of meat science in the Department of Animal Sciences in the College of Agriculture at Auburn University. Bratcher investigates the safety of processed meats, pre- and post-harvest meat animal food safety, and consumer acceptance of niche market products. She is currently leading a USDA-funded project to identify gaps in food safety and security procedures among local and regional animal producers and processors who sell directly to consumers and farmers markets. The end goal is a certification program designed to give local and regional operators added credibility in the hopes of stimulating rural economies. Bratcher is also investigating novel ways to introduce both natural and synthetic antimicrobials as pre-processing technologies to reduce microbial load on the surface of meat. She teaches and mentors both undergraduate and graduate students, and has won several awards related to education. In 2018, she received the Leischuck Endowed Presidential Award for Excellence in Teaching, the highest teaching honor given by Auburn University. On the outreach side, her activities include helping processors throughout the state address issues related to food safety, processing, and business opportunities in meat as well as working with the Alabama Cattlemen’s Association and the Alabama Cooperative Extension System to deliver educational programs to chefs, students, and meat industry representatives. Bratcher is also director of the Auburn University Food Systems Institute, which provides an infrastructure for promoting interdisciplinary research, outreach, teaching, and training opportunities relating to food systems. The institute works with everyone from faculty in academia to food industry personnel and consumers in the general public. Prior to Auburn, Bratcher worked in the meat industry as food safety and quality assurance director at a meat company. She received both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees in animal science from the University of Florida before going on to earn her doctorate in animal science from the University of Missouri.

Topic: Antemortem factors and postmortem processing impacts on pork quality