Animal agriculture leaders from Cohort 3 begin their training in Chicago

Cohort 3 of NIAA’s Advanced Training for Animal Agriculture Leaders launch their experiential leadership program

The third cohort of the National Institute for Animal Agriculture’s (NIAA) Advanced Training for Animal Agriculture Leaders completed their first in-person leadership training session in Chicago, Illinois.

In January, NIAA announced the selected participants in the third cohort of the Advanced Training for Animal Agriculture Leaders. During their time in Chicago, Dairy Management Inc. (DMI) hosted cohort participants as they explored the group’s strengths from CliftonStrengths, outlined their desired leadership experience and curriculum on the first day of the leadership training session. Kaitlin Briggs MBA, PhD, Vice President Animal Health & Sustainability Research at DMI spoke to the group about the organization and her role and the sustainability goals and progress in the dairy industry.

On the second day of the leadership session, Cohort members met Jamie Calvetti, president of Calvetti Meats and founder of Calvetti Culinary Creations. Calvetti Meats was established in Chicago in 1939 and Jamie is the second generation of owner management. The company specializes in custom food products, including ready-to-eat, sous vide and vacuum packaged ready-to-cook food products.

Midan Marketing’s Principal, Michael Uetz finished the day with Cohort members with a discussion about the latest protein research, current market trends, and consumer attitudes. Midan is an independent agency with an extensive knowledge of the meat industry and consumer insights.

“My expectations have expanded following our first gathering as Cohort 3,” said Hanna Robbins, Butterball, LLC and cohort member. “The opportunity to mesh with such a diverse, interdisciplinary group that is collectively passionate about all facets of agriculture is unique to many of us. I’m looking forward to further developing our relationships, conversations, and opportunities over the next 14 months and beyond.”

The third cohort of the Advanced Training for Animal Agriculture Leaders represents a range of agricultural sectors to advance animal agriculture’s role in today’s food system. Participants include Johnna Baller-Granville – Genus ABS, Ryan Bennett – U.S. Roundtable for Sustainable Poultry & Eggs and International Poultry Welfare Alliance, Kristi Block – North American Meat Institute, Sarah Coleman – The Kentucky Horse Council, Rose Digianantonio – State of Wyoming Livestock Board, Will Fiske – Neogen Genomics, Chelsea Good, JD – Livestock Marketing Association, Rita Harkless – Perdue Foods, Blaine Johnson – Texas Tech University School of Veterinary Medicine, Tanner King – Neogen Genomics, Ashley Kohls – Minnesota Turkey Growers Association, Jennifer Koziol – Texas Tech School of Veterinary Medicine, Rahul Kumar – Zoetis, Inc., Megan McCullough – North American Meat Institute, Emmanuel Okello – University of California, Davis, Kelli Payne – Oklahoma Cattlemen’s Foundation, Hanna Robbins – Butterball, Dakota Thomas – Professional Animal Auditor Certification Organization (PAACO), Jackson Tolle – United Producers, Inc., Hattie Webb – Centers for Disease Control and Prevention


To learn more about the leadership program and its sponsors, visit the Advanced Training for Animal Agriculture Leaders page of our website.




Speakers Announced for NIAA’s 13th Annual Antibiotics Symposium in Atlanta

Farmers, ranchers, veterinarians, allied industry professionals, human health specialists and environmental experts will explore collaboration opportunities to derive One Health solutions for antimicrobial resistance and stewardship.


Kansas City, Mo. (October 5, 2023) — The National Institute for Animal Agriculture will host the 13th Annual Antibiotics Symposium in Atlanta, Georgia from November 7-9, 2023. This year’s theme for Symposium is Thriving in a Changing Landscape.


NIAA serves as a contractor to the Cattlemen’s Beef Board and the Antibiotics Symposium is made possible in part by the Beef Checkoff. This year’s Symposium program comes on the heels of NIAA’s Kentucky Farm Tour collaboration with Kentucky Cattlemen’s Association, Kentucky Pork Producers Association, Cattlemen’s Beef Board and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that served to bridge the gap between animal agriculture, human, and environmental health. This program is also made possible by Beef Farmers and Ranchers.


Symposium topics will include an industry report on the current state of antibiotic stewardship from producer to processor to grocer, information on the latest antimicrobial stewardship and resistance research, the multi-dimensional aspects of antibiotic stewardship and AMR, regulatory updates, One Health collaborations, and more. Confirmed speakers include:

  • Ken Opengart – Tyson Foods,
  • Alex Rinkus – Health for Animals,
  • Chris Gambino – The Breakthrough Institute,
  • Terry Lehenbauer – University of California Davis,
  • Collette Kaster – Professional Animal Auditor Certification Organization
  • Andy Bishop – Cattlemen’s Beef Board,
  • Chelsey Shivley – USDA APHIS,
  • Catherine Rockwell – USDA FSIS,
  • Susan Jennings – EPA,
  • Karen Smith – Association of State & Territorial Health Officials (ASTHO),
  • Cameron Bess, PhD – Biomedical Advanced Research & Development Authority (BARDA),

and more. See the full list of speakers here.


In addition to the Symposium program, NIAA will be leading a tour on Tuesday, November 7 before the opening reception. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will host a tour limited to 30 people. More details will be released at a later date.


To register for the 13th Annual Antibiotics Symposium and book your hotel stay in Atlanta, please visit Hotel room block and early bird rates for registration are active until October 15, 2022. For assistance, please contact Morgan Young, Director of Communications and Outreach for the National Institute for Animal Agriculture at




About NIAA
NIAA is the leading resource for the animal agriculture industry and provides value to all stakeholders involved in providing safe and healthy food for the world. NIAA is a non-profit organization that is dedicated to providing programs to work towards providing solutions for disease, while promoting a safe and wholesome food supply and the best practices of environmental stewardship, animal health and well-being.


About the Beef Checkoff
The Beef Checkoff was established as part of the 1985 Farm Bill. The Checkoff assesses $1 per head on the sale of live domestic and imported cattle, in addition to a comparable assessment on imported beef and beef products. States may retain up to 50 cents on the dollar and forward the other 50 cents per head to the Cattlemen’s Beef Promotion and Research Board, which administers the national Checkoff program, subject to USDA approval.

National Institute for Animal Agriculture Launches Policy Review Panels


NIAA will offer unbiased, third-party reviews to organizational policies related to animal agriculture.


The National Institute for Animal Agriculture (NIAA) has launched a new program to review organizational policies and positions specific to animal agriculture as a third-party reviewer.

As the protein value chain works to continuously improve, new animal agriculture policies and positions are often adopted by organizations. Access to third-party subject matter experts through NIAA ensures the latest science and information for practical animal handling and husbandry practices are applied. Review panels span all species and sectors of the animal agriculture value chain.

As a convener of interdisciplinary leaders to explore, discuss, and learn about specific topics and issues, NIAA’s mission is put into action through this program. NIAA Animal Agriculture Policy Review Panels are assembled upon request by animal agriculture stakeholders to review a specific organizational policy or position statement. The Policy Review Panels are comprised of subject matter experts (SMEs) and serve to:

  • Determine if the policy follows the latest scientific research;
  • Assess if the policy encourages continuous improvement;
  • Review the policy for practical application;
  • Evaluate if the policy is balanced to allow for species, regional, cultural, and other differences in production practices and models; and,
  • Offer feedback and counsel that the requesting organization can implement into the policy.

NIAA provides the panel of SMEs with the proposed policy text with no distinguishing language or branding to prevent bias. Feedback from the panel is aggregated into a final report by NIAA staff and includes the credentials of the SMEs. NIAA does not share confidential review panel reports. However, reports may be shared by the requesting organization if they choose.

“We look forward to continuing to serve the animal agriculture community as policies and positions on a variety of animal agriculture topics are developed or revised,” said Eric Moore, NIAA board chairman and director of technical services – North America of Norbrook, Inc. “A NIAA Policy Review Panel just completed its first report, and the requesting organization shares the practical feedback was ‘well received’ and will be applied to their final position statement.”

To learn more about NIAA’s Animal Agriculture Policy Review Panels, contact NIAA’s executive director J.J. Jones or visit

2023 Annual Conference: Climate-Smart Animal Agriculture Recap

Last week the National Institute for Animal Agriculture (NIAA) welcomed members and guests to Kansas City for the 2023 Annual Conference: Climate-Smart Animal AgricultureMore than 140 guests joined the conference and receptions to connect with fellow animal agriculture leaders to explore, discuss, and develop solutions that encourage continuous improvement in animal agriculture.

NIAA’s Annual Conference featured dynamic speakers that discussed the current state of climate-smart initiatives and collaboration across the agriculture industry.

The speaker and panelist list included:

  • Joe Leathers – 6666 Ranch
  • Anne-Marie Roerink – 210 Analytics
  • Amy Skoczlas Cole – Farm Journal’s Trust in Food
  • Hansel New – Dairy Farmers of America
  • Kirsten Nickles – Certified Angus Beef
  • Billy Gascoigne –Ducks Unlimited
  • Burke Griggs – Washburn University, School of Law
  • Paul Hishmeh – Field to Market

“We’ve received great feedback from attendees saying there wasn’t a session where they didn’t learn something worth taking back to the workplace,” said J.J. Jones, Executive Director of NIAA. “We’re already in the planning stage for next year and look forward to seeing our members and guests at the 13th Annual Antibiotics Symposium in Atlanta, GA in November.”

Animal agriculture benefits from those who consistently go above and beyond for the industry and each year at Annual Conference, NIAA recognizes those outstanding professionals. The Chairman’s and President’s Awards recognize animal agriculture leaders who have been especially supportive, inspiring, and trusted by leaders within NIAA and have contributed significantly to its success. For more than a decade, NIAA has honored leaders in animal agriculture who engage with all angles of the value chain, from gate to plate. These Animal Agriculture Advocates use their voice and platforms to push animal agriculture forward. The longest standing award – first presented in 1965, is the Meritorious Service Award. This award is presented to animal agriculture leaders who have invested their career to advancing our sector.

The 2023 honorees include:
Chairman’s Award:
Dr. Megin Nichols; Deputy Division Director for the Division of Foodborne, Waterborne, and Environmental Diseases at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

President’s Award:
Jared Wareham; North American NuEra Business Development Manager at ABS Global

Advocates for Animal Agriculture Award:
Ryan Goodman; Director of Communications and Community Engagement at Certified Angus Beef
Dr. Tera Barnhardt; Consulting Veterinarian and Owner of Animal Welfare Consulting & Research

Meritorious Service Award:
Dr. Lanny Pace; Mississippi Veterinary Research and Diagnostic Laboratory at Mississippi State University College of Veterinary Medicine

2023 honorees

During Annual Conference, NIAA recognized outgoing leadership and confirmed new board members during the annual membership meeting. NIAA thanks the retiring board members for their service:

  • Dr. Leonard Bull – retired professor at NC State University
  • Dr. Lucas Pantaleon – Ogena Solutions/Pantaleon PLLC
  • Dr. Lanny Pace – Mississippi Veterinary Research and Diagnostic Laboratory at Mississippi State University School of Veterinary Medicine

Retiring Board Members

NIAA welcomes the following new board members:

  • Adam Brock – Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin
  • Dr. Kaitlyn Briggs – Dairy Management Inc.
  • Dr. Megin Nichols – Centers for Disease Control & Prevention
  • Dr. Tera Barnhardt – Animal Welfare Consulting & ResearchNew board members

To learn more about the award honoreesboard members, or to access media passes to the 13th Annual Antibiotics Symposium in November, please visit or contact Morgan Young, Director of Communications and Outreach for the National Institute for Animal Agriculture at

Weekly Bulletin December 15: New Rule will Determine How or If You can Buy Antibiotics