COLLEGE STATION - The naming ceremony for the O.D. Butler Jr. Animal Science Complex at Texas A&M University will be on April 8.
The ceremony will begin at 11 a.m. at the Beef Center at 7707 Raymond Stotzer Pkwy., west of College Station.
Invited speakers include Dr. Robert Gates, Texas A&M president; Dr. Elsa Murano, The Texas A&M University System’s vice chancellor and dean of agriculture and life sciences; Dr. Larry Boleman, assistant vice chancellor for special projects; Dr. James G. Butler, son of O.D. Butler; Bethany Solomon, president of the Saddle and Sirloin Club; and a representative from the board of regents.
“O.D. Butler had a passion for serving the animal industries of the state and nation,” Murano said.
“Without a doubt, Dr. Butler was a wonderful teacher, leader, administrator, mentor and innovator. He contributed significantly to animal science, research, teaching and outreach.”
Butler, former head of the department of animal science, associate vice president for agriculture and natural resources and associate vice chancellor for agriculture of the Texas A&M system, died in 1998.
The Texas A&M board of regents approved the name change on July 22, 2004. It was formerly known as the Animal Science Teaching, Research and Extension Complex.
The center includes facilities for livestock nutrition, training about physiology and animal behavior teaching research and education. It is located on 580 acres along the Brazos River.
Following the ceremony, a luncheon will be hosted by the department of animal science on the lawn near the Beef Center. Tours of the complex also will be available.
A native of Orange, Butler rose to the rank of major while serving in the U.S. Army from 1941 until 1945. He retired as brigadier general and commander, 420th Engineer Brigade, U.S. Army Reserve, in Bryan in 1977.
He earned a bachelor’s degree in agriculture and a master’s degree in animal husbandry from Texas A&M and a doctorate in animal husbandry (meats) from Michigan State University.
He served as an instructor at Texas A&M from 1947 through 1956, and as professor and head of the department of animal science from 1956 until 1978. He was named vice president for agriculture and renewable resources in 1978 and associate deputy chancellor for agriculture in 1980. He retired in 1986.
During his tenure, many of the facilities on the campus the Kleberg Animal and Food Science Center, Dick Freeman Equestrian Center, Pearce Animal Pavilion and the Rosenthal Meat Science and Technology Center were built.
Butler helped establish the System’s Agricultural Research and Extension Centers across the state and persuaded the Texas Legislature to fund Extension livestock specialist positions at the centers. He led the university’s efforts to establish the Texas Veterinary Medical Diagnostic Laboratory and was a key player in efforts to eradicate brucellosis in the state.
His expertise and knowledge was sought by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, foreign governments, Texas governors, senators and a former president.
Butler also helped found several producer and commodity organizations.
To attend the ceremony and luncheon, please contact Grace Glenn, department of animal science, at (979) 845-1543, email@example.com , by April 1.