The American Meat Science Association (AMSA) announced on June 6 the appointment of Collette Schultz Kaster as its new Chief Executive Officer.

Kaster brings more than 25 years of technical experience in areas of food safety, quality assurance, and animal welfare and executive roles managing teams across livestock industry companies and organizations. Most recently, she has served as the Executive Director of the Professional Animal Auditor Certification Organization (PAACO).

“Collette is the right leader at the right time for AMSA and its future. She has extensive industry knowledge combined with her formidable experience managing successful teams and businesses. She understands our organization and has a vision to meet member needs in this growing association and provide content and context for the science and information demands of an expanding world,” stated Dr. Eric Berg, AMSA President.  

Kaster is trained as a meat scientist, with degrees from South Dakota State University and the University of Nebraska. She has been a member of AMSA for 28 years and is a past President and holds the rank of AMSA Fellow. “I am ready and eager to take immediate strides toward the successful and secure future of AMSA. Thanks to the dedication and work of the staff and its members, AMSA is well-positioned for an even more effective leadership role in the meat industry with its volumes of cutting- edge research from the world’s leading scientists as well as a treasure trove of talent in all areas of meat science and technology,” Kaster said.

In addition to her new role with AMSA, Kaster will continue to lead PAACO as its Executive Director. To enable this dual role, PAACO has developed several highly experienced Training Specialists to meet the growing needs for animal auditor training, certification, and audit certification across all sectors of the livestock industry. Kaster said, “Working on programs that improve animal welfare in an achievable, practical way is a passion of mine. The shared/joint leadership role with PAACO and AMSA allows me to lead both organizations in areas to which I am strongly dedicated and drive positive results in two closely aligned/concentric industries.”

Kaster will begin as the AMSA CEO on July 1.