2020, 2021 Department of Animal Science external award winners

Texas A&M University is built on six core values: excellence, integrity, leadership, loyalty, respect and selfless service. The Department of Animal Science is committed to developing these core values in current students who are training to become leaders in animal science and agriculture. In addition, the Department commends and honors its former students and friends who have led successful careers according to these same values.

In 2012, the Department of Animal Science introduced an External Awards Program to celebrate outstanding alumni and non-alumni who have brought excellence, integrity, leadership, loyalty, respect and selfless service to the field of animal science. The Outstanding Young Alumni and Outstanding Alumni Awards as well as the Animal Science Hall of Fame recognize alumni and non-alumni for their outstanding leadership and significant contributions to animal science.

Animal Science Hall of Fame

The Animal Science Hall of Fame Award celebrates outstanding individuals who, through their exceptional work and achievements, have advanced the field of animal science and made a profound difference to the productivity and sustainability of animal agriculture.

2020 – R.A. “Rob” Brown

2021 – John Beverly, Ph.D.

Outstanding Alumni

The Animal Science Outstanding Alumni Award recognizes a graduate of the Department of Animal Science at Texas A&M University who has built a distinguished career in animal science and who has brought honor to the Department of Animal Science and the field of animal science.

2020 – Chad Martin, Ph.D.

2021 – James O. “Bo” Reagan, Ph.D.

Outstanding Young Alumni

The Animal Science Outstanding Young Alumni Award recognizes a graduate of the Department of Animal Science at Texas A&M University within the past 12 years who has, early in their career, attained prominence in the field of animal science and has brought honor to the Department of Animal Science and the field of animal science.

2020 – Anne Gilmore, Ph.D.

2021 – Myriah Johnson, Ph.D.

R.A. “Rob” Brown was born in 1936, and grew up on his family ranch. He enrolled in Texas Tech University in 1954 to pursue a degree in Animal Science. While in college, he was involved in many leadership positions and was active on the livestock judging and college rodeo teams. Upon graduating from Texas Tech, Brown returned to the ranch in 1958.

Brown played a role in establishing multiple breed associations as well as introducing new hybrid breeds to the southern part of the US, South America and Australia. He has served on committees and boards such as the Texas and Southwestern Cattle Raisers Association Research Committee and the Texas Animal Health Commission and has received more awards throughout his career than can be measured.

The R.A. Brown Ranch itself has long been recognized for breeding horses that cater to the needs of working cowboys and Brown is an important part of that legacy. Playing an active role in the American Quarter Horse Association, Brown served as president in 1995 and was inducted into their hall of fame in 2004. Former AQHA Executive Vice President Bill Brewer summed up Brown’s legacy, “Rob was always a voice for ranchers and their importance to AQHA.”

Brown married Peggy Donnell in 1957 and the couple had four children, all of whom are active in agriculture. As a team, Brown and his wife have made enormous contributions to the cattle and horse industries. They have the unique ability to integrate advances in animal science with tradition and common sense.

Rob Brown has truly set a standard for beef cattle and quarter horse quality, durability and usefulness across the nation. We are proud and honored to induct him into the Animal Science Hall of Fame.

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John R. Beverly, Ph.D., enjoyed a long and distinguished 33 year career with the Texas A&M University System. His career began as a Texas Agricultural Extension Service Reproduction Specialist and concluded as a Deputy Vice Chancellor and Associate Dean, but always an educator.

Beverly had state-wide responsibility for beef cattle reproduction and was the catalyst for Extension Animal Science’s long running Artificial Insemination and Pregnancy Determination School which he initiated in 1969. He wrote or co-authored the first A&M Extension bulletin on pregnancy testing (among many others). Although it has been revised many times, it is still widely used today. Beverly was also instrumental in developing the concept of Integrated Reproductive Management (IRM) widely used and now known as Integrated Resource Management nationwide.

Beginning in 1983 as Associate Department Head for Extension, he provided leadership to and directed the efforts of 27 Extension specialists in beef, dairy, equine, sheep and goat, swine and meat science located on campus and in 14 regions across Texas. During that time, Extension Animal Science expanded or developed several new Extension programs and greatly enhanced the very popular Texas Cow/Calf Management Handbook. In 1988, Beverly was awarded the Superior Service Award for his work in Extension. He also received the Association of Former Students Excellence in Extension Award, the Deputy Chancellor’s Award in Excellence for Team Research and the Vice Chancellor’s Award for Industry Partnerships. Dr. Beverly’s promotion to Assistant Director for Extension allowed him to provide the leadership needed to plan and establish the Animal Science Teaching, Research and Extension Complex. His work was rewarded with even further promotion, ending in his appointment as Associate Dean of the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and Deputy Director of the Texas A&M Agricultural Extension Service from which he retired in 2000.

Beverly’s knowledge of the Texas and US livestock industry, organizations and individuals allowed him to play a key role in strengthening Texas A&M’s teaching, research and Extension programs and in promoting the value and successes of the Department Animal Science.

We are proud and honored to posthumously induct him into the Animal Science Hall of Fame.

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Chad Martin graduated from Texas A&M University in 1996 with a B.S. in Animal Science. From there, he launched an impressive career with Tyson Foods, starting as a Quality Assurance Inspector. He moved up the rankings and served as Vice President of Food Safety Quality Assurance, Senior Vice President and General Manager of Beef Enterprise, Chief Operating Officer and Group President of Poultry and now serves as the Head of Tyson Food Service Poultry.

In addition to his experience at Tyson, Martin has also served as the Assistant Operations Manager at Capital Land and Livestock in Schwertner, Texas. He is a member of many professional boards and associations, which includes the Texas A&M Agrilife External Advisory Board, Texas A&M Animal Science Advisory Council, Executive Committee of the National Chicken Council, Executive Committee STEC Cap Grant, Technical Committee US Meat Export Federation, FAD Committee Secure Beef, Past Chairman and Executive Committee of the Beef Industry Food Safety Council, Inspection and Scientific Affairs Committee of NAMI and the Technical Committee of the Canadian Meat Council.

We are honored to recognize Chad Martin as the 2020 Animal Science Outstanding Alumni.

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As a three-time graduate of the Department of Animal Science at Texas A&M University, James O. “Bo” Reagan, Ph.D., has established himself as a proven leader, advisor and highly-sought consultant to the meat industry. Through his visionary and innovative leadership, Reagan has successfully established and maintained relationships with key stakeholders in the meat industry that have been integral in forging dynamic and meaningful research and technologies in the areas of food safety, meat quality and sustainability.

As former Executive Vice President of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, Reagan was responsible for funding millions of dollars for research in the beef food safety and nutrition areas – research that has had a tremendous impact on the beef industry. Reagan gives unselfishly of his time and talents through participation in organizations that promote agriculture and the beef and meat industries and, more importantly, focus on educating our future leaders regarding the importance of the need to feed our world, grow our economy, improve our health and enrich our youth. Namely, Reagan currently serves as Chairman of the International Stockmen’s Education Foundation, Co-Chairman of the International Livestock Congress Program Committee, member of the International Committee for the National Western Stock Show, Chairman and Co-Founder of the Beef Industry Food Safety Council and as past Board member of the American Meat Science Association.

While Reagan’s impressive career has led him to various locations across the country, his love and passion for the Department of Animal Science, the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences and his beloved Texas A&M University have never wavered.

Reagan and his wife Marietta have two children, James Reagan Jr. and Taylor Reagan Meadows as well as two grandsons, Preston and Eli James Meadows. The Reagan’s reside in Fort Collins, Colorado where they have a commercial Dorper sheep operation.

We are proud to honor James O. “Bo” Reagan, Ph.D., with the 2021 Animal Science Outstanding Alumni Award.

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Dr. Anne Gilmore is an Assistant Professor at Pennington Biomedical Research Center. She is a doctoral level trained dietitian with a diverse training background in basic, clinical and population sciences. She completed her Ph.D. in Nutrition at Texas A&M University where she also worked as a clinical dietitian for inpatient services, including patients with cancer. She then joined the Reproductive Endocrinology & Women’s Health Laboratory at Pennington as a postdoctoral fellow in 2012. Her research in metabolism, obesity and cancer, funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and other foundations, has led to 37 peer reviewed publications, five book chapters, and 19 scientific abstracts to date. Her faculty appointment at UT Southwestern allows her to translate her research into the clinic and classroom.

Dr. Gilmore’s professional successes are built on the academic and research foundation established as an undergraduate and PhD student at Texas A&M University. In Dr. Stephen Smith’s lipid biochemistry laboratory, Dr. Gilmore worked as a PhD student performing studies that spanned the translational research spectrum.

In July of 2016, Dr. Gilmore was promoted to Assistant Professor at Pennington Biomedical. She obtained philanthropic support from private donors, secured NIH pilot funds and was awarded the Louisiana Clinical and Translational Science (LA CaTS) Roadmap Scholar award for 2016-2018 to pursue projects and extramural funding to establish herself as an independent researcher in the field of metabolism and cancer. In addition to salary and research support, the Roadmap Scholar award included course work for a Master of Science in Clinical Research, which Dr. Gilmore earned in May of 2018. Pilot grants included funding from Pennington Biomedical’s Nutrition Obesity Research Center (NORC), Centers of Biomedical Research Excellence (COBRE) and Botanical Research Center. In 2019, Dr. Gilmore was awarded a KL2 fellowship from the University of Alabama Birmingham Center for Clinical and Translational Science until her move to UT Southwestern Medical School in January 2020.

In her spare time, Dr. Gilmore enjoys triathlon training, being outdoors, and spending time with her family, friends, and animals.

We are proud to recognize Dr. Anne Gilmore’s hard work with the 2020 Animal Science Outstanding Young Alumni Award.

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After completing her doctorate in animal science from Texas A&M University, Myriah Johnson, Ph.D. secured a position at the Noble Research Institute in Oklahoma. At Noble, she led the Integrity Beef Sustainability Pilot Project, a national project designed to validate sustainability metrics developed by the US Round-table for Sustainable Beef. Her involvement in this project, her depth of knowledge, and capacity to represent the interests of beef producers placed her at the center of the beef sustainability discussion. Dr. Johnson’s value to the beef industry was recognized by National Cattlemen’s Beef Association’s leadership and she was actively recruited and hired as Senior Director of Sustainability Research in April of 2020.

As Senior Director of Sustainability Research, Johnson is responsible for working with beef industry stakeholders to create NCBA’s sustainability research priorities. She organizes the research proposal submission process and oversees the awarding of funds and completion of the actual research projects. Most importantly, she is responsible for disseminating research findings to stakeholders and policy makers. Johnson spends a significant portion of her time presenting beef’s sustainability message to consumers, helping equip producers to share beef’s story and translating science into manageable pieces of information for consumers. Since graduating, Johnson consistently takes time to speak to multiple classes about beef sustainability and has worked closely with graduate students to help them understand their role in beef sustainability. Additionally, she has served as an unofficial mentor/role model to a number of students in the program.

Johnson serves on the Lindsay Youth Supporters board which supports the 4-H, FCCLA and FFA programs as well as chairs the Staff-Parish Relations Committee at the First United Methodist Church in Gainesville, TX. Johnson and her husband, Chris Looney, reside in Lindsay, Texas, and welcomed their first child in June.

Johnson is without question, a leader in beef sustainability and the beef industry. At this early stage in her career, she is an excellent example of the outstanding graduates this department produces and their importance in feeding a growing world population with sustainable solutions. We are honored to recognize her as the 2021 Animal Science Outstanding Young Alumni.

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