Three Animal Science Professors Receive National Honors

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Aug. 23, 2013

LINCOLN, Neb. — Three faculty members with the University of Nebraska-Lincoln's Department of Animal Science received national awards recently.

Rodger Johnson received the American Society of Animal Science’s Morrison Award, Dennis Brink received the ASAS’s  Fellow Award and L. Dale Van Vleck received the American Dairy Science Association's Fellow Award.

Johnson, professor emeritus, studies swine genetics and his research has improved swine health and production worldwide. Some of his recent research could help producers combat a disease called porcine reproductive and respiratory syndrome. In recent experiments, he studied alternative approaches to evaluating immunity and genetic resistance to PRRS. This disease costs U.S. pork producers about $560 million annually.

Throughout his teaching career, Johnson has assisted 41 graduate students in earning their degrees.

Brink, professor, began teaching in 1978 and has taught nutrition, management and physiology classes at UNL. Currently, his primary teaching responsibility is a course on animal physiology and one for new animal science students.

Brink also is current president of the UNL chapter of Gamma Sigma Delta, an honor society that recognizes faculty and students in agriculture and related sciences.

The ASAS Fellow award is presented to animal scientists who have made excellent contributions to the animal industry and have had continuous membership in the ASAS for a minimum of 25 years.

The ASAS Morrison Award is awarded to animal scientists who have made a meritorious scientific contribution or discovery in research in the field and is the organization's most prestigious award.

Van Vleck, emeritus professor, is recognized as a pioneer in developing innovative quantitative and computational approaches devoted to the goal of genetic improvement. Van Vleck has chaired supervisory committees of 49 doctoral and 29 master's graduate committees and worked with 14 postdoctoral students and research associates, many of whom now hold important positions at universities and research institutions worldwide.

Van Vleck has authored or co‐authored 380 peer-reviewed scientific papers, 275 abstracts, 14 books, 11 chapters in books, 111 contributions to proceedings of numerous conferences and 120 articles for farm and extension publications.

The purpose of the ADSA Fellow Award is to recognize Dairy Foods Division and Production Division members of the American Dairy Science Association who have given distinguished service to the dairy industry over 20 years or more.

Larry Berger, Ph.D.
Professor and Department Head
Animal Science
Dan Moser
IANR News Service

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