The American Meat Science Association has chosen Jennie Hodgen, Ph.D., Merck Animal Health, as one of three recipients of its 2017 Distinguished Achievement Award. This prestigious honor is bestowed to AMSA members who have demonstrated noteworthy scientific skills in muscle foods research and technology that contribute to the animal products industry.
“It is an incredible honor to be recognized by the American Meat Science Association, especially because this is an organization that has been such an integral and impactful part of my career,” says Hodgen, senior account manager and meat scientist, Veterinary and Consumer Affairs. “As a meat scientist working to educate consumers, I am able to combine my two passions every day — science and agriculture. To be recognized for exploring my passions is amazing and confirms my work, as well as that of many others, is making an impact.”
The landscape in all segments of the food chain is ever evolving with an emphasis on providing more information. “We know that we’ve got a significant challenge in front of us to help educate and communicate — with an emphasis on reaching the public,” says Judson Vasconcelos, DVM, Ph.D., executive director, Veterinary and Consumer Affairs. “Dr. Hodgen’s work in this area has undoubtedly had a positive impact on our ability to connect with consumers by helping to shape the messaging and needed transparency. Her passion will continue to drive her, as well as our commitment to being change agents to enhance and magnify the fundamental platform on which our business is built — The Science of Healthier Animals.”
At Merck Animal Health, Hodgen serves as a meat scientist, facilitating research trials, engaging in animal welfare issues and fostering relationships with our food retail service partners. Before joining the company in 2008, she worked as a consultant to assist small processors to ensure compliance with Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Points and help foodservice establishments train employees for food sanitation certifications.
Hodgen is Region One director of American CattleWomen, a member of the Indiana Agricultural Leadership Program and is active within the Indiana Beef Council, as well as a myriad of other industry organizations. Hodgen earned a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in Animal Science and Food Science from Oklahoma State University and obtained a doctorate degree from the University of Nebraska.
For more than a century, Merck, a leading global biopharmaceutical company, has been inventing for life, bringing forward medicines and vaccines for many of the world’s most challenging diseases. Merck Animal Health, known as MSD Animal Health outside the United States and Canada, is the global animal health business unit of Merck. Through its commitment to the Science of Healthier Animals, Merck Animal Health offers veterinarians, farmers, pet owners and governments one of the widest range of veterinary pharmaceuticals, vaccines and health management solutions and services. Merck Animal Health is dedicated to preserving and improving the health, well-being and performance of animals. It invests extensively in dynamic and comprehensive research and development resources and a modern, global supply chain. Merck Animal Health is present in more than 50 countries, while its products are available in some 150 markets. For more information, visit Merck-Animal-Health.com or connect on LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter at @MerckAH.