The American Meat Science Association (AMSA) has announced that Dr. William Benjy Mikel is the recipient of the 2017 Intercollegiate Meat Judging Meritorious Service Award. The award is sponsored by Food Safety Net Services and Agri-West International. Dr. Mikel will be honored at a special awards banquet at the AMSA 70th Reciprocal Meat Conference on Tuesday, June 20, 2017 in College Station, Texas.
For over 35 years, Dr. Benjy Mikel has supported the Youth and Intercollegiate Meat Judging Programs in an effort to enhance critical thinking, decision making and communication skills of our future industry, academia and governmental leaders. His career in meat judging began at Auburn University and moved to Mississippi State University and University of Kentucky. Perhaps his biggest impact was resurrecting and revitalizing the meat judging programs at these three institutions.
While at the University of Kentucky in the late 1990s and early 2000s, Dr. Mikel took on the task of hosting the Southeastern Meat Judging Contest when no other options were available, single-handedly providing all the products and garnering the corporate support necessary to keep the event available to teams throughout the eastern U.S. Also under his watch, the first ever RMC Meat Processing clinic was held.
After leaving academia, Dr. Mikel spent time consulting as a trainer, auditor, processing expert authority, and technical advisor to many companies and non-government organizations. He has an outstanding international and national record of achievement in food and meat science, extension and industry service in agricultural and food security capacity. He is currently the Chief Business Development and Sales Officer for John R. White Company, a food ingredient distribution company based in Birmingham, Ala. He has recently served as the President of the American College of Animal Sciences, President of the AMSA, President of the Intercollegiate Meat Coaches Association, and President of the Southern Association of Agricultural Scientists Department.