Follow #TeamVERO at the Texas A&M CVM VERO Facebook page.
Dr. Dee Griffin serves as a clinical professor and the director of #TeamVERO. He has a joint appointment between the Texas A&M College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences (CVMBSS) and the Paul Engler College of Agriculture & Natural Sciences at West Texas A&M University (WT).
Raised on a small cow/calf operation, he has focused his career on cattle. He received his DVM from Oklahoma State University and his MS from Purdue University. He is also a professor emeritus at the University of Nebraska, Great Plains Veterinary Educational Center (GPVEC).
Before his time with the CVM, Dr. Griffin received the American Association of Bovine Practitioners (AABP) national award for Excellence in Preventive Medicine (their national award for Institutional Teaching, Research, and Service Excellence) in 1985, and later received their Mentor of The Year award in 2017. In 2005 and 2006, he was a recipient of the Nebraska Cattlemen’s and the Nebraska Veterinary Medical Association’s Distinguished Service Awards, eventually becoming a 2016 inductee of the Nebraska Hall of Agricultural Achievement, and a recipient of the Distinguished Alumni Award from his alma mater. The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) named him their inaugural Beef Quality Assurance (BQA) Educator of the Year in 2012, and in 2013 he was honored by The Bovine Veterinarian as one of the industries VIPs for his contributions to the feedlot industry and as one of their “Top 20 Most Influential Veterinarians.” He is also the past president of the Academy of Veterinary Consultants (AVC) and winner of the AVC’s Veterinary Consultant of the Year award in 2015. Most recently, Dr. Griffin was inducted into the Cattle Feeders Hall of Fame and was the first veterinarian to receive their Industry Leaders Award in 2017.
Dr. Griffin currently serves on the NCBA’s BQA Advisory Board, a program which he helped pioneer in the 1980s, the NCBA’s Health and Well-Being Committee, the Board of Directors of both the Professional Animal Auditors Certification Organization (PAACO) and the American Association of Bovine Practitioners (AABP), and the Food & Drug Administration’s (FDA) Veterinary Medical Advisory Committee and Minor Species Drug Use Committee.
He and his wife started dating in a small high school where his mother-in-law and father-in-law represented 50% of the faculty. 4-H was the magnet that brought them together, and family is the bond that keeps them secure.
Dan Posey, DVM
Dr. Dan Posey is a clinical professor and the academic coordinator for #TeamVERO. He holds a joint appointment in the Department of Large Animal Clinical Sciences (VLCS) in the CVMBS and the Paul Engler College of Agriculture & Natural Sciences at West Texas A&M University (WT). He was in private, general veterinary practice in rural Madison County, Texas for 20 years before starting his career in academia. Dr. Posey has been certified in beef cattle production management through the Great Plains Veterinary Educational Center in Clay Center, Nebraska since 1997. He joined the CVM in 2002 and is boarded by the American Board of Veterinary Practitioners (ABVP) in beef cattle practice. He served as the Chief of Food Animal Medicine in VLCS from 2003 to 2008. In 2009, he joined the CVMBS's Professional Programs Office as director of special projects and then served as director of student affairs from 2014 to 2016, when he joined VERO and moved to Canyon, Texas. Dr. Posey is the veterinarian for the WT Research Feedlot and the Nance Ranch in addition to advising the Pre-Vet Club at WT. He is an active member of the Texas Veterinary Medical Association (TVMA), having served on the Bovine and Membership committees, the Board of Directors, and the Executive Committee. He is also a past president of the TVMA.
Paul Morley, DVM, PhD, DACVIM
Dr. Paul Morley is a professor and director of food animal research for #TeamVERO through the Department of Large Animal Clinical Sciences (VLCS) in the CVMBS. He is an epidemiologist and veterinary internal medicine specialist who studies infectious diseases affecting people and animals. Major emphases for his professional activities include investigating the ecology of antimicrobial resistance in animals and food production systems, using analytical epidemiology to improve our understanding of diseases in animals and people, and improving infection control and biosecurity to manage health risks that are important in veterinary medicine, agriculture, and public health. His research has used shotgun metagenomics to investigate the influence of production practices in intensive agriculture systems on the antimicrobial resistance and microbial ecology as these affect human, animal, and ecosystem health.
Sarah Capik, DVM, PhD
Dr. Sarah Capik is an assistant professor of ruminant animal health. She holds a joint appointment with Texas A&M AgriLife Research and #TeamVERO through the Department of Veterinary Pathobiology (VTPB) in the CVMBS. Her research interests include the characterization, transmission dynamics, diagnosis, and control of Bovine Respiratory Disease (BRD). She has been involved in bacterial challenge studies and natural disease models, investigating potential methods to mitigate stress in cattle, the use of behavioral monitoring to identify sick cattle, and evaluating diagnostic sampling strategies for BRD. She is also a member of the Academy of Veterinary Consultants, the American Association of Bovine Practitioners, the High Plains Veterinary Medical Association, and the Panhandle Livestock Professionals.
Benjamin “BJ” Newcomer, DVM, PhD, DACVIM, DACVPM (Epidemiology), DABT
Dairy Cattle Veterinarian
Large Animal Clinical Sciences (CVMBS)
As the son of a high school agriculture teacher, Dr. Newcomer was raised around cattle for much of his childhood, spending time on the dairy farms of his uncles and grandfather. This love of farming and cattle was fostered throughout his formative years growing up in rural central Florida and led to his desire at a young age to pursue veterinary medicine as a career. Dr. Newcomer received his DVM from the University of Florida in 2002, then practiced dairy production medicine for several years at a large dairy practice in central California with more than 200,000 milking cows in the practice’s care. During this time, he also served with Christian Veterinary Mission in the Central African Republic for two years assisting pastoralists and small farmers with their cattle. Dr. Newcomer joined the faculty of the Auburn College of Veterinary Medicine in 2008 as a Clinical Instructor in the Food Animal section of the Department of Clinical Sciences while pursuing a PhD in bovine infectious disease and seeking specialized training in herd health, internal medicine, and toxicology. He joined #TeamVERO program in the fall of 2020 and currently serves as the Dairy Cattle Veterinarian with a special interest in training students in the practical aspects of dairy science and dairy production management.
Jenna Funk, DVM, MS
Beef Cattle Veterinarian
Large Animal Clinical Sciences (CVMBS)
Dr. Jenna Funk was born and raised in a small town in east-central Illinois. She received her DVM from Iowa State University in 2015. After a year in a private cow-calf practice in Nebraska, she returned to Iowa State University to complete a beef cattle residency and Master’s degree program. In January of 2019, she moved to Ontario to join Metzger Veterinary Services. She will join #TeamVERO program in the spring of 2020. Her main veterinary interests are feedlot production medicine and health record data collection and analysis.
Jaye Hawkins is the administrative coordinator for #TeamVERO through the Department of Large Animal Clinical Sciences (VLCS) in the CVMBS. She has more than twenty years of experience working within university systems and agricultural organizations serving as an executive director and administrator. She has been associated with the WT College of Agriculture & Natural Sciences since 2009.
Established in 2009, VERO is the partnership between the Texas A&M University College of Veterinary Medicine & Biomedical Sciences (CVMBS)
and the West Texas A&M University (WT) Paul Engler College of Agriculture & Natural Sciences
to bring Veterinary Education, Research, & Outreach to the Texas Panhandle.