Scientific Advisory Council
In 2010, the Animal Health Institute established a Scientific Advisory Council to provide leadership and counsel as part of the Healthy People. Healthy Animals. Healthy Planet. initiative. The Council represents a cross-section of some of the world’s leading experts in the areas of veterinary science, food safety, public health, nutrition, education and research.
By fostering greater awareness and understanding that animal health is essential to human health, the Scientific Advisory Council seeks to build successful partnerships with both the public health and animal health communities, and promote science-based research that demonstrates the need to contribute to a safer food supply that will benefit both humans and animals.
In March 2011, the Scientific Advisory Council convened in Washington, DC to discuss emerging research at the nexus of human and animal health and assess the current political landscape impacting animal health and the agriculture community. Along with AHI and its member companies, the Council also hosted an intimate roundtable discussion on the “One Health” philosophy, inviting leaders in the animal and public health community, agriculture organizations, regulatory agency representatives, and academic thought leaders to participate in the conversation.
Founding Members of the Scientific Advisory Council
Gale Buchanan, PhD
Dean and Director Emeritus, College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, University of Georgia; Former Chief Scientist and Under Secretary for Research, Education and Economics, United States Department of Agriculture
Dr. Buchanan spent the first 21 years of his professional career with Auburn University in the Department of Agronomy and Soils, with primary teaching and research responsibilities in weed science. He has served as Dean and Director of the Alabama Agricultural Experiment Station, and in 1986 was appointed Associate Director of the Georgia Agricultural Experiment Stations and Resident Director of the Coastal Plain Experiment Station. In March 1995, he became Dean and Director of the College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences.
In 2005, Dr. Buchanan was nominated by President Bush to serve as Under Secretary for Research, Education, and Economics in the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and was confirmed for this position by the United States Senate in May 2006. With the passage of the 2007 Farm Bill, he assumed the responsibility of USDA Chief Scientist along with that of Under Secretary for Research, Education and Economics, where he served in this capacity until January 20, 2009. Currently Dr. Buchanan serves as Dean and Director Emeritus, College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, University of Georgia, Tifton Campus.
Peter J. Costa, MPH, CHES
Global Communications Coordinator, Alliance for Rabies Control
Peter Costa is a health communications specialist and certified health educator with specific interest in community health education. He serves as the Director of Communications for the Global Alliance for Rabies Control and is the Coordinator of the Alliance’s flagship initiative, World Rabies Day Campaign, held annually on September 28th in 135 countries. Peter is one of only a few people in the world communicating rabies prevention messages on a global basis, and currently serves as an advisor to various One-Health working groups, including the One Health Initiative (OHI) in Florida and the Scientific Consortium for Health without Borders located in Hisar, India.
Prior to his position with Alliance, he served as a Health Educator at the North Carolina Division of Public Health. In this role, Peter led the development of community-based health promotion and exposure prevention awareness programs for environmental hazards and directed state-wide educational efforts on environmental emergency response.
Michael P. Doyle, PhD
Regents Professor of Food Microbiology, Director, Center for Food Safety, University of Georgial
Dr. Michael P. Doyle is a Regents Professor of Food Microbiology and Director of the Center for Food Safety at the University of Georgia. He is an active researcher in the area of food safety and security and works closely with the food industry, government agencies, and consumer groups on issues related to the microbiological safety of foods. He serves on food safety committees of many scientific organizations and has served as a scientific advisor to many groups, including the World Health Organization, the Institute of Medicine, the National Academy of Science-National Research Council, the International Life Sciences Institute-North America, the Food and Drug Administration, the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the U.S. Department of Defense, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Dr. Doyle is a Fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology, the International Association for Food Protection and the Institute of Food Technologists, and is a member of the National Academies Institute of Medicine.
Susan Finn, PhD, RD, LD, FADA
President and CEO, American Council for Fitness and Nutrition
Dr. Finn is a recognized leader and a respected communicator in the field of nutrition and health whose efforts to promote improved health and quality of life for all levels of society have been acknowledged by her peers in healthcare and in the business world. Currently, as president and CEO of the American Council for Fitness & Nutrition, Dr. Finn leads a nonprofit organization committed to helping Americans understand the benefits of eating healthfully and being more active. She is also an advisor to many public and private organizations concerned with nutrition and health. Dr. Finn is a past president of The American Dietetic Association (ADA) and is immediate past chair of the ADA Foundation. In 1998, ADA gave her its Marjorie Hulsizer Copher Award, the highest honor bestowed by the association. Finn’s achievements have been recognized in Washington, D.C., as well, with an appointment, made by President George W. Bush, to the President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports.
Director of Food Safety Communications, International Food Information Council
As Director of Food Safety Communications at the International Food Information Council (IFIC), Tony has worked for over 13 years developing a number of food safety education and outreach programs. Additionally, he directs the development and continuation of risk / crisis communication programs among academic, government and industry stakeholders on emerging food safety and defense topics. Tony is a graduate of James Madison University, Harrisonburg, VA, where he received a BS degree in Communications. Tony is an active member of the International Association for Food Protection (IAFP), the Institute of Food Technologists (IFT), The Conference for Food Protection (CFP) and the National Center for Food Defense (NCFPD) risk communication core team.
Guy H. Loneragan, BVSc, PhD
Epidemiologist, Professor of Food Safety and Public Health, Texas Tech University
Dr. Guy Loneragan is an epidemiologist and Professor of Food Safety and Public Health at Texas Tech University. He received his veterinary degree from the University of Sydney, Australia, and his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from Colorado State University.
Dr. Loneragan is research-driven and has participated in an excess of $5 million in research projects. The primary focus of his research is epidemiological approaches to food safety and animal health. He is working to fill data gaps concerning pre-harvest ecology and mitigation of E. coli O157, salmonella in cattle, and antimicrobial drug resistance in animal production. Dr. Loneragan serves in adjunct profess or affiliate faculty roles at Colorado State University, West Texas A&M University, Kansas State University and Texas A&M University.
John Maas, DVM
Veterinarian/Specialist in Cooperative Extension, University of California Davis, School of Veterinary Medicine
Dr. John Maas is board certified in both Clinical Nutrition (ACVN) and Internal Medicine (ACVIM). His research activities over the past 37 years have focused on trace element and vitamin metabolism in ruminants and infectious diseases of cattle. He has published more than 70 scientific papers in journals and texts on topics such as selenium, copper, iron, and iodine metabolism, and he has been involved in food safety research and education at the state and national level. Dr. Maas is a member of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association Quality Assurance Advisory Board and Chair of NCBA’s Producer Education Committee. He is also a member of the board of directors of the California-Nevada Hereford Association and a cattle producer with ranching interests in Shasta County and Butte County, CA.
Roger Mahr, DVM
Chief Executive Officer, One Health Commission; former president, American Veterinary Medical Association
Dr. Roger Mahr received his veterinary medical degree from Iowa State University in 1971. After working as an associate in suburban Chicago for three years, he established, owned, and directed the Meadow View Veterinary Clinic in Geneva, Illinois from 1974 to 2005. Dr. Mahr was elected unanimously to the office of President-elect of the AVMA in 2005. In this role, he revealed a vision for a one health initiative whereby the veterinary medical profession assumed a leadership role to establish a coordinated mechanism to facilitate collaboration and cooperation among colleagues in veterinary medicine, human medicine, public health, and environmental sciences with a focus on “One World, One Health, One Medicine.” In addition to the AVMA, Dr. Mahr has held numerous leadership positions in the Chicago Veterinary Medical Association and the Illinois State Veterinary Medical Association, as well as in many community organizations. He has received the President’s Award from both the AVMA and the Illinois State VMA. Dr. Mahr has been recognized by his alma mater with the College of Veterinary Medicine Stange Award for Meritorious Service in 2004 and the Iowa State University Distinguished Alumnus Award in 2009. He continues as a small animal practitioner and currently serves as chief executive officer of the One Health Commission.
Michael Payne, DVM, PhD
Program Director, California Dairy Quality Assurance Program (CDQAP), University of California Davis, School of Veterinary Medicine
Dr. Michael Payne is a researcher and outreach coordinator at the Western Institute of Food Safety and Security (WIFSS) a center within the University of California’s School of Veterinary Medicine. Holding doctorates in both veterinary medicine and toxicology, Dr. Payne has worked as a veterinarian in extension, academics and private practice. He is director of the California Dairy Quality Assurance Program, an industry, academic regulatory partnership which promotes the health and welfare of livestock, consumers and the environment through outreach, education and research. The most active current areas are environmental regulations, carcass disposal options and dairy cattle welfare.
Peter J. Pitts
President, Center for Medicine in the Public Interest; Advisor to Obama
Administration FDA Transition Team; Former Associate Commissioner, US
Food and Drug Administration
Peter Pitts is President of the Center for Medicine in the Public Interest. From 2002-2004 A former member of the United States Senior Executive Service, Peter was FDA's Associate Commissioner for External Relations, serving as senior communications and policy adviser to the Commissioner. He supervised FDA's Office of Public Affairs, Office of the Ombudsman, Office of Special Health Issues, Office of Executive Secretariat, and Advisory Committee Oversight and Management. He served on the agency's obesity working group and counterfeit drug taskforce and is a Special Government Employee (SGE) consultant to the FDA's Risk Communications Advisory Committee where he is advising the FDA on regulatory issues in the sphere of social media. In 2010, he was named by Modern Healthcare magazine as one of the 300 "most powerful people in American healthcare." He has served as an adjunct professor at Indiana University's School of Public and Environmental Affairs and Butler University. A graduate of McGill University, he is married to Jane Mogel, and has two sons.
Rodney L. Preston, PhD
Federation of Animal Science Societies; Professor Emeritus, Texas Tech University Department of Animal and Food Sciences
R. L. Preston is a member of the American Society of Animal Science and a former member of the American Institute of Nutrition, Society for Experimental Biology and Medicine and the Plains Nutrition Council. He was Editor for the Applied Section of the Journal of Animal Science and is a Past-President of the American Society of Animal Science; this society awarded him the Animal Industry Service Award (1996) and was made a Fellow of the society (1997). He also received the Professional Excellence Award from the Plains Nutrition Council (2006). He still serves on the Federation of Animal Science Societies Food Safety, Animal Health and Animal Drug Committee. He has been a member of the National Academy of Sciences-National Research Council Committee on Animal Nutrition, Council for Agriculture Science and Technology Board of Directors, American Association for the Accreditation of Laboratory Animal Care Board of Trustees, Chairman of the Intersociety Animal Research Priorities Task Force, U.S. Office of Technology-Animal Technology Assessment Panel and many other committees. He has authored or co-authored hundreds of journal articles, paper abstracts, book chapters and more. In 2004, he co-authored “Fifty Years of Pharmaceutical Technology and Its Impact on the Beef We Provide to Consumers.”
Dr. H. Morgan Scott
Professor, Epidemiology Department of Veterinary Pathobiology, Texas A&M University
Dr. H. Morgan Scott is a 1988 graduate veterinarian of the Western College of Veterinary Medicine in Saskatchewan, Canada. He spent four years in beef cattle practice in Alberta and pursued graduate studies first in ruminant health management and then in epidemiology at the Ontario Veterinary College, University of Guelph. Dr. Scott completed his Ph.D. in 1998, and then spent a year as a post-doctoral fellow in public health at the University of Alberta. In addition to private practice, he has worked in both government (food safety surveillance) and academic settings. He was professor of epidemiology at Kansas State University 2010-2013 and is currently a faculty member at Texas A&M University. Much of his research has been on studying the factors impacting antimicrobial resistance (AR) among commensal and pathogenic enteric bacteria in food animal production systems, with a program spanning the realm from the molecular to the sociological. In particular, he is interested in applying both epidemiological and ecological approaches to quantify the emergence, propagation, dissemination, and persistence of resistant enteric bacterial strains in integrated populations of animals and humans.
Peter Silley, PhD
MB Consult Limited; Professor of Applied Microbiology, University of Bradford, UK
Dr. Silley obtained a BSc (Hons) in Bacteriology at the University of Birmingham in 1977 and earned his Doctorate in 1982, funded by ICI studying GI tract microbiology. He has held a post-doctorate position with the Department of Agriculture for Northern Ireland, and became an appointed lecturer at Queens University of Belfast. In October 1984, Dr. Silley joined Glaxo’s group of companies working in veterinary medicine as Head of Microbiology, Glaxo Animal Health and subsequently as Senior Research Leader working on the development of novel antimicrobials in human medicine. Later, he joined Don Whitley Scientific Limited and was responsible for all technical aspects of the company’s international business in microbiology, establishing a highly successful contract research business working primarily in the areas of animal and human health. In 1999, Dr. Silley formed MB Consult Limited. He has authored more than 50 publications, in addition to authoring specialist chapters in microbiology and pharmacology textbooks.
Randall Singer, DVM, MPVM, PhD
Associate Professor of Epidemiology, Department of Veterinary and Biomedical Sciences, College of Veterinary Medicine; Division of Epidemiology, School of Public Health, University of Minnesota
An associate professor of infectious disease epidemiology in the College of Veterinary Medicine and the School of Public Health at the University of Minnesota, Randall Singer’s research focuses on applying an ecological approach to a disease system, wherein host, environment, agent and other factors that influence pathogen transmission are evaluated. In the past, Singer has investigated food-borne pathogens, vector-borne pathogens and the spread of antimicrobial resistance in bacteria. His projects integrate tools and methods in a variety of areas, including molecular biology, microbiology and mathematical modeling. As an Institute on the Environment resident fellow, Singer is researching the spread of antibiotics in soil and water over space and time, and relating his findings to the amplification of specific resistance genes in bacteria, as well as the overall diversity of resistance. Singer is also the founder and director of an international summer school on public health and food safety in Latin America.