JBS has announced that Dr David H Baker is this year’s John B Swisher Leadership Award Winner. Dr Baker’s family accepted the posthumous award in his honour at the World Pork Expo in Des Moines.
The John B Swisher Annual Leadership Award (by JBS United) is presented to individuals exemplifying extraordinary leadership qualities and who have made an outstanding contribution to the advancement of the swine industry.
Over the 40 years of David Baker’s career he contributed to the animal and human nutrition industry. His work improved the quality of livestock feed, led to the production of chemically defined diets for use in animal research studies, and increased the understanding of diseases caused by vitamin and mineral deficiencies.
With 451 peer-reviewed publications, six major awards from the American Society of Animal Science and five from the Poultry Science Association, Baker’s lifelong commitment has fundamentally advanced the scientific community in the fields of animal nutrition.
One of Baker’s true passions was teaching. In 1967 Baker became a professor at his alma mater, the University of Illinois.
“Dr Baker was a larger than life person, with an unbelievable passion and commitment to the future of each student,” described Doug Webel, COO of Nutrition and Emerging Technologies at JBS United and a former student of Baker’s.
Baker’s work has been recognized by the University of Illinois, which named Baker a University Scholar, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture, which presented Baker with the Distinguished Service Award.
In 2005, Baker was honoured for his contribution to animal nutrition and inducted as a member of the National Academy of Sciences. His legacy lives on through the people that continue his work in the industry, people that call Dr Baker their mentor.