Texas A&M University faculty and students from the Department of Animal Science will accept awards during the 2020 American Society of Animal Science’s virtual annual meeting and trade show July 19-23.
The meeting is jointly presented by the American Society of Animal Science, ASAS; the Canadian Society of Animal Science, CSAS; and the Western Section – American Society of Animal Science, WSASAS. These organizations foster the discovery, sharing and application of scientific knowledge concerning the care and responsible use of animals to enhance animal and human health and well-being.
“The Department of Animal Science at Texas A&M University is proud to have outstanding faculty and graduate students who are receiving national recognition for the remarkable work they are doing to advance the field of animal science,” said Cliff Lamb, Ph.D., head of the Department of Animal Science.
Animal Growth and Development Award
Luis Tedeschi, Ph.D., animal nutrition professor, is the recipient of the Animal Growth and Development Award, which recognizes an individual who has contributed and published research in the last 10 years in the field of animal growth and development. This award is sponsored by DSM Nutritional Products, Inc.
Tedeschi has garnered international recognition for integrating growth and development concepts into applied decision support tools to assist stakeholders in the feedlot business.
In the late 1990s, Tedeschi studied the effects of different feed supplementation regimens on the growth curves of beef cows. He gained advanced knowledge of the composition of growth while studying for his master’s degree and by collaborating in a series of studies to assess energy expenditure of beef cattle using the comparative slaughter technique. This research had a tremendous impact on his ability to comprehend the bioenergetics of growth.
In the early 2000s, his work in this area led him to mathematically postulate the relationship of an animal’s body gain composition to its efficiency of use of energy deposition in tissues of beef cattle. His work changed the paradigm of determining the efficiency of use of energy derived from dietary components to focus on the composition of the gain.
FASS-AFIA New Frontiers in Animal Nutrition Award
Tedeschi also will be recognized with the New Frontiers in Animal Nutrition Award by Federation of Animal Science Societies and the American Feed Industrial Association.
His award states his credibility and usefulness in the animal sciences have earned the highest level of recognition in the field.
American Society of Animal Science Meats Research Award
Chris Kerth, Ph.D., meat science assistant professor, will receive the Meats Research Award, which recognizes an individual who has shown outstanding research in the last year in the field of meat science. This award is sponsored by Elanco Animal Health.
Kerth was raised on a cattle and wheat farm near Collyer, in rural northwest Kansas. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Kansas State University and his master’s and doctorate degrees from Texas Tech University.
Kerth joined the faculty of the Animal and Dairy Science Department at Auburn University, upon completion of his doctorate. During his time at Auburn, his research focused on animal nutrition impacts on meat quality and consumer acceptability, mostly using forage-finished beef as a model.
In 2009, he was awarded the Fulbright Senior Scientist to study beef production and processing systems in Uruguay. In 2010, Kerth joined the faculty at the Texas A&M, where his research has focused on flavor chemistry and the development of aromas and flavors in meat, food and beverage products.
Kerth has developed grants of nearly $8 million and published 62 manuscripts, 97 abstracts, five book chapters and three edited books. He also has developed a nationally and internationally recognized research program in meat flavor chemistry.
Animal Management Award
Reinaldo Cooke, Ph.D., beef cattle production associate professor, will receive the Animal Management Award. Cooke has developed an internationally recognized academic program, resulting in management to improve efficiency of beef operations based on Bos taurus and Bos indicus cattle.
Through excellence in research and educational ventures, his accomplishments are leading to the discovery, dissemination and application of management systems that advance beef cattle production in the U.S. and across the globe.
To date, Cooke has published 130 peer-reviewed journal articles, delivered more than 200 scientific and outreach presentations across the globe, secured more than $5.5 million in funding, and mentored several undergraduate, graduate and postdoctoral students.
Cooke also serves as Section Editor for the Journal of Animal Science and is serving as president for the ASAS Western Section. He received the ASAS Early Career Achievement Award in 2018, ASAS Western Section – Extension Award in 2017, and the ASAS Western Section – Young Scientist Award in 2016.
Wettemann Grad Scholar in Physiology Award
Kelsey Schubach will receive the Wettemann Grad Scholar in Physiology Award, sponsored by the Robert Wettemann Appreciation Club.
Schubach, who started her doctoral program in 2017 at Texas A&M, is investigating the impacts of nutritional management during gestation and early life on permanent alterations in physiological and productive responses in beef cattle.
During her graduate career, Schubach has published 21 journal articles, eight peer-reviewed proceedings and 15 research abstracts. She also played a significant role in securing extramural funding and contributed to several teaching and outreach efforts related to beef cattle physiology.
Schubach received the WSASAS – Young Scholar Award in 2017 and placed first in the 2018 SSASAS Graduate Competition in the doctoral category.
She earned both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Oregon State University, where her thesis focused on stress and reproductive physiology of beef heifers.
Joseph P. Fontenot Travel Scholarship Award
Audrey Earnhardt will receive the Joseph P. Fontenot Travel Scholarship Award, sponsored by the Joseph P. Fontenot Appreciation Club.
Earnhardt is currently working with Thomas Welsh, Ph.D., and Ron Randel, Ph.D., as a graduate research assistant and doctoral student in physiology of reproduction. She is the recipient of the Animal Science Department Excellence Fellowship in the Department of Animal Science.
Her doctoral research focuses on the physiological genomics of stress and the immune system in Brahman cattle, as well as determining the significance of a “sire effect” on the age at first calving in Brahman heifers.
In addition to serving as a teacher’s assistant for the undergraduate reproductive physiology course in the department, she is also the treasurer for the Texas A&M Animal Science Graduate Student Association.
Earnhardt earned her bachelor’s degree from North Carolina State University in 2017, where her work as an undergraduate research assistant led to her interest in research and academia. She then worked as a research intern for Smithfield Premium Genetics while completing her master’s at North Carolina State University. Her research focus was on the genetics of functional teats in swine.