A series of promotions is bringing new leadership to Ceva Animal Health's U.S. poultry team. 

Gary Baxter has been promoted to vice president of sales and marketing. He will replace Dr. Claude Dhont in this role. Dhont will be returning to Europe at the end of the summer to assume another position with Ceva as country manager in Belgium, the Netherlands and Luxemburg. Rick Van Oort will join the North American team as director of marketing.

Under the leadership of Dhont and Baxter, Ceva climbed to the No. 2 position in market share and was ranked as the top poultry sales force in the animal health industry by C.F. Grass Consulting.

"With Claude's leadership and vision, we have become one of the leading companies in the poultry vaccine market," said Craig Wallace, chief executive officer of Ceva Animal Health, LLC.  "Gary will continue to build on the structure we've put in place for future growth that will ensure Ceva is the go-to company for broiler and layer vaccines and services."

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Dhont, assumed leadership of the U.S. team in early 2012. His previous experience with Ceva includes 10 years as managing director in the United Kingdom and Ireland. 

Baxter has been with Ceva for the last three years holding positions of leadership in both sales and marketing for the U.S. poultry business. Prior to joining Ceva, Baxter spent more than 10 years in marketing for Tyson Foods, Inc. including serving as Tyson's marketing director.

Van Oort joined Ceva Animal Health in 2009 as poultry corporate range manager, where he was responsible for the layer vaccine portfolio focusing on vaccines for Salmonella, Infectious Coryza, Marek vaccines and Mycoplasma Gallisepticum.  Prior to joining Ceva, he worked at Intervet as a global product manager.

The transition to these new roles is already under way and is expected to be complete by Sept. 1.