I grew up in suburban Minneapolis MN and Chicago IL. I trained in biology (BS, Eastern Kentucky), veterinary medicine (DVM, Illinois) and epidemiology (PhD, Illinois). I worked primarily as a veterinary infectious disease and public health researcher at the USDA in Nebraska and at the University of Nebraska over the past 30 years. During the past decade, I slowly converted from industrial agriculture supporter and enabler (by my research) to sustainable agriculture proponent and animal protection advocate. This was manifest by my role in 2015 as a whistleblower of livestock abuse at the USDA’s Meat Animal Research Center in Nebraska (https://www.nytimes.com/2015/01/20/dining/animal-welfare-at-risk-in-experiments-for-meat-industry.html).
My current interests include working towards more sustainable environment-people-animal friendly agricultural-food systems and improving the welfare of industrial factory-farmed livestock and of animals used in biomedical or agricultural research. I am an active animal protection volunteer with several organizations.
I taught high school science with the US Peace Corps in Togo, West Africa for two years in the 1980s. From 2007 to 2014, I was a consultant on dangerous veterinary pathogens in Azerbaijan and Armenia for the US Department of Defense.